Philippe Wolff’s short, fascinating survey covers the period from the Roman Empire to the beginnings of printing, a period when most of the languages spoken in Europe today fragmented and coalesced into separate entities. It illustrates how the chaotic history of the period, encompassing barbarian invasion, mass religious conversion and the origins of the modern nation state, is still legible in the words we use today.
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Published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson History
03 July 2003