Esperanto
(1,388 words)

Esperanto is a constructed universalist language developed in the late 19th century by L. L. Zamenhof (1859–1917), a Jewish ophthalmologist, for use as a global second language. Zamenhof grew up in Poland under Russian occupation and experienced at first hand the linguistic, ethnic, national, and religious tensions between Jews, Catholic Poles, Orthodox Russians, and Protestant Germans. He identified problems of communication as a main cause of conflict and constructed Esperanto as the remedy wh…

Cite this page
Gotelind MÜLLER, “Esperanto”, in: Encyclopedia of Chinese Language and Linguistics, General Editor Rint Sybesma. Consulted online on 29 March 2017 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2210-7363_ecll_COM_00000146>
First published online: 2015



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