"compared the tree to the last speaker of Manx"

Manx is a Gaelic language spoken by the Manx people, who originate from the Isle of Man, a self-governing British Crown Dependency in the Irish Sea between Great Britain and Ireland. Manx was thought to have died out after its last native speaker, Ned Maddrell, died in 1974. Manx had acquired a low status in comparison with English, so the language was not passed down to children. In recent decades there have been efforts to revive Manx, a task made easier by the fact that the language was well recorded (for instance, there was a Manx Bible). These efforts have included bilingual road signs, radio broadcasts and the teaching of Manx in schools. Since 2003, a Primary school on the Isle of Man has taught its curriculum entirely in Manx, and it is now thought that there are some children who speak Manx as their first language and there are around 600 speakers altogether. However, the UN still declared Manx an 'extinct' language in 2009.

Learn Manx online