What is the difference between a dormant language and an extinct language?


Both extinct languages and dormant languages no longer have any fully-proficient L1 users.  The Ethnologue makes a distinction between the two, however, to reflect the differences that exist in the sociolinguistic status of these languages without users. Although a dormant language is not used for daily life, there is an ethnic community that associates itself with a dormant language and view the language as a symbol of that community's identity.  Though a dormant language has no proficient users, it retains some social uses. In contrast, an extinct language is no longer claimed by any extant community as the language of their heritage identity. Extinct languages are lacking in both users and societal uses. Some extinct languages, such as Latin, may continue to be used as second-languages only for specific, restricted, often vehicular, functions, that are generally not related to ethnic identity.