What is vernacular?

In order to understand the meaning of the vernacular term, it is necessary to first proceed to the determination of its etymological origin. In this sense, we would have to say that it emanates from Latin, from “vernaculus”, which referred to everything related to a country.

However, we cannot ignore that this Latin word, in turn, comes from “vernus”, which can be translated as “indigenous”, and this word from “verna”, which was the word used to refer to the domestic slave who had arrived. even born at home. This adjective refers to something native or domestic, especially if it is a language or a language. For example: “Scientists want to expand their knowledge of vernacular flowers”, “I apologize, but I don’t understand the vernacular”, “I still don’t master all the vernacular terms”.

Typically, the notion of vernacular is used when, in a given context, a language other than the speakers’ mother tongue is used. For a long time, Latin replaced vernaculars in the realm of religion. Therefore, religious texts continued to be written and disseminated in Latin, even in regions where other languages ​​were spoken. Masses were also celebrated in Latin, to the detriment of vernaculars. The language adopted to facilitate common understanding between people who do not share the same vernacular is known as a vehicular language, lingua franca or lingua franca. The vehicular language may vary by season or environment. Just as Latin was the vehicular language after the dissolution of the Roman Empire, over the years it has been replaced by French and German, depending on the area in question. Today it can be said that the lingua franca is English, as it is often the language of choice for those who do not have the same vernacular. Thus, it is possible for a Peruvian to travel to China and communicate in English, for example. On the other hand, we cannot ignore what is known as vernacular architecture either. It is the one that comes to identify a specific region, the one that is more traditional and significant of the place and has the peculiarity of originating when the Indians of a land find it necessary to build in order to survive. Among the many characteristics that define this type of architecture, we can highlight the following:

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• It is carried out with the use of materials and raw materials existing in the area where it is carried out.

• Constructions of this type do not have so much an ornamental purpose as a clear comfort objective. And is that what is intended is that those allow citizens to have a home with the best possible conditions in terms of lighting, air conditioning, humidity, space …

• Note that the vernacular architecture of one location is different from that of another.

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