Larry Wall is a great man. And Perl was mighty force. An empire was built, and it may have crumbled, but all empires crumble.
One day you will be repeating these words, to a youngster that says the heroes of your Ruby palace, (or your conquering Pythonistas) were weak men of little vision, and laughs at you for following them. And when that day comes, I ask only that you think of me, and Wall, as I now think of one who followed Backus, and the mighty FORTRAN army.
It's not age. C is older than Perl by decades, but I think C is a lovely little language. Lisp is as old as FORTRAN (almost) and I think it's probably the most elegant language invented yet. No, my quibble with Perl is that in throwing around implicit state everywhere (in an effort to make programming languages more like human languages) Perl is just bad as a system for building complex systems. It's not unique in this regard - Perl shares its weakness with the shell scripts it was supposed to replace.
Larry Wall released Perl 1.0 in Dec 1987 - two years before Guido started writing Python. First usenet release of Python was Feb 1991, with 1.0 coming in 1994, with Java coming approx 1 more year later.