wonderful playground

You make some interesting points, Holger. I would still maintain that Esperanto is essentially a bureaucratic scheme though, since as you rightly point out it is not rooted in any natural speech community. A ‘wonderful playground’, yes; but is it more meaningful than a clever crossword puzzle or other extrinsic wordplay? I think not, since a ‘language’ without a natural speech community is like a stream without a source. Bottled water, preserved in a flat and insipid state for all time, may be fine in a desert - but give me natural language that dropeth as the gentle rain from heaven!

As Mencken said, “A living language is like a man suffering incessantly from small haemorrhages, and what it needs above all else is constant transactions of new blood from other tongues. The day the gates go up, that day it begins to die.” This kind of vitality, I suggest, can only be found when responsibility for a mother tongue’s changing usage is vested in a wide and diverse group of individuals. Take this Board, for instance… we rarely agree on anything except our common love of language!