For something different, a bit of a challenge with history involved, I became fascinated with the language of my forebears - Old English. Not Shakespeare's English, though filtering some of Old English through the language as it was spoken in Elizabethan times can help you understand it better , and not even Chaucer's Middle English, this is the language of the Angles and Saxons who migrated to Britain in the fifth and sixth centuries AD. Echoes of OE can be heard in dialects in Yorkshire and the Scottish borders today, and of course in our modern English, at least one third of which is derived from OE. The rest of our modern version has been altered by Danish and Nordic words courtesy of Viking invasions, French via the Normans, and Latin from the Romans through to the medieval church. It is, from what I've read, of some similarity to Frisian and Dutch, the Saxons coming from that region originally. As a novice learner (leornere), it takes a bit to get used to the grammatical gender with nouns and verbs, and the different cases for nouns we don't use in modern English. I'm currently reading a couple of guides by Mary K Savelli after kicking off some web research a couple of months ago. Poems and epic sagas like the famous Beowulf sound amazing in the old language. I find it amazing to hear how the language evolved and how, in some ways, we haven't changed that much at all in our speaking in 1200 years (of course, on other ways we've changed a lot!). I wonder if anyone else on the Lounge has such an interest in old languages as well?