Definition of modern language in English:

modern language


  • A living or modern-day language as a subject of study, as contrasted with classical Latin and Greek.

    ‘pupils were allowed to choose whether or not to take a modern language’
    • ‘he studied modern languages at Trinity College’
    • ‘The son of a postman, he was a Cambridge University graduate in modern languages (German and French).’
    • ‘He also praised the advances the University had made in subjects such as Arabic, modern languages such as French, Spanish and Italian, mathematics and science.’
    • ‘This consisted of humanist subjects such as English, history, classical and modern languages alongside ‘realist’ or practical vocational subjects such as mathematics and science.’
    • ‘He entered this school in 1891 and there he studied religion, Latin and modern languages, history and geography, and mathematics and science.’
    • ‘Every generation, poets and scholars try their hands at translating Homer from ancient Greek into modern languages.’
    • ‘She left Glasgow when she was 18 and went to study English and modern languages at university in London.’
    • ‘It is incredibly worrying because maths and modern languages are subjects that the country needs.’
    • ‘The gendering of the curriculum, with physics and maths being seen as boys' subjects and modern languages as girls', is also apparent in the pattern of subject choice reflected in examination passes.’
    • ‘Instead, he wants teachers to offer more vocational classes within the school system but linked to colleges and the world of work, as alternatives to subjects such as modern languages.’
    • ‘In 1900 he went to Budapest to study modern languages at the university and composition, with Hans Koessler, at the Academy of Music.’
    • ‘But maths, science subjects and modern languages increasingly are taught by people who have not specialised in the subjects.’
    • ‘He was born in Dublin, where he studied modern languages at Trinity College, 1933-7.’
    • ‘He found the discipline too constraining, however, and switched his undergraduate studies to modern languages.’
    • ‘Saskia is doing GCSEs, and Allegra is studying modern languages at Magdalen College, Cambridge.’
    • ‘It was this racism that postulated a single language from which all modern languages were derived.’
    • ‘Born in Sheffield, she grew up near York and went to Oxford to study modern languages.’
    • ‘The school's modern languages department offers pupils courses in Chinese, French, German, Spanish, Italian and even business language competence in French and German.’
    • ‘The language has changed little since medieval times compared with other modern languages.’
    • ‘These can be taken in place of subjects such as history, geography and modern languages.’
    • ‘The University of the Third Age has more than 1,000 members in York on more than 90 courses, from philosophy, modern languages and classics to film history, music and bridge.’


modern language

/ˌmädərn ˈlaNGɡwij/ /ˌmɑdərn ˈlæŋɡwɪdʒ/