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Old 14-05-2006, 20:57   #41
Sabeena Sabeena is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nath
May be some old French Persons don't like English mentality....but a lot of French persons are so bad in English that they just don't dare to speak it.
That's why you think they are arrogant.
hey.. im french... ... but i do know what you mean...their accent is soo funny though.. hehe
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Old 14-05-2006, 23:19   #42
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english evolves very quickly as a language. it is a simple language and far less complex than many other languages and for that, adopting it for use in business and other fields seems understandable. and because of America's geographic isolation, it is more difficult to learn a language than oh say, if a country is surrounded by many countries that use another language but remain in close proximity. it's a different culture altogether. in europe, i'm sure it is no big deal to know more than one language but in america, most people are only fluent in one. it would be more multicultural to require learning another language starting at an early age but by no means do i think only knowing english is smug. that makes no sense.
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Old 15-05-2006, 00:00   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nath
Offtop:
Shut, Patrick ....I knew that but I 've tried to avoid to be too "chauvinistic"
Offtop:
Hehe, well, i like that period of history since at the time Normandy was independant and we were at the peak of our power.

I actually regret the way things evolved later (Normandy and England separating, Normandy becoming part of France and England becoming part of a unified kingdom with the Celtic nations Scotland, Wales and Ireland for some time.
I wish Normandy and England had remained a unified state - Anglo-Normandie - like during the glorious days of William I, King of England and Duke of Normandy.
And today we would speak Anglo-Norman on both sides of the channel, an exquisite fusion of Old English and Old Norman-French.


Quote:
Originally Posted by nath
Offtop:
By the way my father is Normand...I don't remember if I told you that Pat...
Offtop:
Yeah, you mentioned it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by QueenBee
Offtop:
*amazed at how intelligent haku is*
Seriously, you pretty much know everything that ever happened in the world.
Offtop:
Haha, you make me blush.


Quote:
Originally Posted by nath
Ask to Patrick who is very good in English...when he met Olga , he needed some time to adapt himself to speak English...
Yeah, it takes me some time to switch and be comfortable orally (even though i obviously don't have any problem switching in a second in writing), haha. Last year i spent a week in Germany (for business, we communicated in English) and at first it was a bit difficult but after a few hours it comes naturally.
It's also much easier to communicate with other non-natives anyway, with native English speakers you often get the feeling that you're annoying them because your English is not good enough for their standards. But it's probably like that with the native speakers of any other language.
So English is a great language to communicate with non-native English speakers, but not so much with native speakers, LOL.
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Old 15-05-2006, 00:08   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haku
So English is a great language to communicate with non-native English speakers, but not so much with native speakers, LOL.
Offtop:
Was it that way when we spoke on mic?
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Old 15-05-2006, 00:30   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachel
Offtop:
Was it that way when we spoke on mic?
Offtop:
Not at all.


To precise my thought… I meant when you meet people you don't know (for business or whatever), when you meet Germans and Italians for example (something i did 6 months ago), everybody has a funny accent and you stick to a rather international business English, everybody is comfortable because nobody is a master of English.
But if you meet a native speaker, they speak fast, they use phrases and expressions, you often can't keep up and they 'dominate' you, and that puts you in an awkward and sometimes embarrassing position.

It's obviously totally different when you meet friends or at least people in an informal context.
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Old 15-05-2006, 05:27   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haku
[off]It's also much easier to communicate with other non-natives anyway, with native English speakers you often get the feeling that you're annoying them because your English is not good enough for their standards. But it's probably like that with the native speakers of any other language.
So English is a great language to communicate with non-native English speakers, but not so much with native speakers, LOL.
Oh I know the feeling. When I was in the States I constantly got the feeling they were all annoyed with teh fact I had to pause to think of a word to say sometimes, and how the manner in which I spoke didn't really follow their usual patterns... not to mention my harsh slavic accent... everytime I opened my mouth I felt like dying. But it got a bit easier as time went by.

I agree it's much easier speaking to non-native English speakers. We're all in the same boat so to speak.
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Old 15-05-2006, 07:15   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haku
[off]It's also much easier to communicate with other non-natives anyway, with native English speakers you often get the feeling that you're annoying them because your English is not good enough for their standards. But it's probably like that with the native speakers of any other language.
I know that feeling yeah. We went to Germany with school and we stayed in host family's.. But well, they were all German and they were (of course) fluent in German. So you feel really.. "stupid" when you speak German because you feel like they're laughing at you and think you suck and bladiebla *rambles on*
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Old 15-05-2006, 21:54   #48
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Red face

ah dont worry, there are also many languages , like russian(ive been told), in which cases if one just only tries, the native speakers DO appreciate your effort so my guess is that its more a matter of self reflection and in some cases just cultural difference.....

just my thoughts tho...
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Old 15-05-2006, 23:27   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vanik
Its clear then that spanish is wider spread around the world than french or german...
Yeah, you're right. It has increased a great deal since the last list I saw. Perhaps it was only a some languges from the whole list.

Quote:
Originally Posted by haku
However, i disagree with some of the people above, English is by far the simplest language of the Indo-European familly.
It's a unique language indeed, and not similar to any other. But because of this you'd have a hard time learning it if you had no exposure to it. English is fuuull of exceptions from rules. It's just a mix of everything. It's been losing some of the really heavy things that other languages might strive with, but english is easy almost only because of the cultural influence unto other countries.

An example; Norwegian is veeeery simple. Easy rules with few exceptions. It's not like french or german (i have no knowledge to french, and only speak from what I've heard by other) with hardcore rules and stuff. Norwegian has no casus and has a pretty standard build up of sentences. In some ways it's similar to both English and German, only it has few exceptions and no casuses. If Norwegian would influence as much as English I'm positive Norwegian would be easier to learn. Of course, I can't say that for sure Hehehe. Dutch is the most similar language to Norwegian grammatically I think.
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Old 16-05-2006, 04:14   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dradeel
Norwegian is veeeery simple.
Norwegian has so poor semantic row that before it can be adapted to the world culture it has to be transformed by adding a couple of millions words.

This is my take on the subject:

In some 50-60 years, people of all countries will be speaking at least English. It'll be a result of influence from Europe and USA. European countries have already adopted English language as a sort of "all-around" means of communication. Since economy, culture and politics are dominated by Europe and USA, there's no other way out than a complete adaptation of English.

As for the "future" English. It has to evolve a bit more. I'm sure that it will be enriched by words from another languages. Btw, there are only 27% of English-English words left in the language nowadays.

Do native speakers need to learn more languages? Why not! It won't harm an overall cultural level of the nation but on the contrary.

*forre is seldom wrong* LOL
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Old 16-05-2006, 13:18   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freddie
... not to mention my harsh slavic accent... everytime I opened my mouth I felt like dying.
Offtop:
Haha. You have a lovely accent.
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Old 17-05-2006, 01:08   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forre
Norwegian has so poor semantic row that before it can be adapted to the world culture it has to be transformed by adding a couple of millions words.
MILLIONS? People have been able to surive and have no problem using about 30-40 000 words in total. There's have no point in adding millions of words, but aye, as it's a small language it needs some new words. However, these words you could easily get from English. But either way, Norwegian is much easier than English grammatically.

Quote:
Originally Posted by forre
In some 50-60 years, people of all countries will be speaking at least English. It'll be a result of influence from Europe and USA. European countries have already adopted English language as a sort of "all-around" means of communication.
Agree. Dunno about all countries in the whole wide world, but every single inhabitant in the western world will be talking english fluently. Dunno about asians and some southern americans and africans and so on tho...
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Old 17-05-2006, 03:48   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dradeel
MILLIONS? People have been able to surive and have no problem using about 30-40 000 words in total.
I was generalizing. No offense.
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Old 17-05-2006, 11:21   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forre
In some 50-60 years, people of all countries will be speaking at least English.
Of course ! Even cats know that ....see , which one does it right , eh ? :

Cat mewing :
Danish: miav
Dutch: miauw
English: meow
Finnish: miau
French: miaou
German: miau
Greek: miaou
Hebrew: miyau
Hungarian: miau
Italian: miau
Japanese: nyan nyan/nyaa nyaa
Russian: miyau
Spanish: miao
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Old 17-05-2006, 14:07   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dradeel
But either way, Norwegian is much easier than English grammatically.
As far as i know, Norwegian (like all Scandinavian languages) has 2 or 3 grammatical genders, that disqualifies it as being grammatically simpler than English right there since English has no grammatical gender.

Grammatical genders are always a nightmare for non-native speakers of any language since you have to learn by heart the gender of every single noun. In every sentence you have to always wonder 'is this thing masculine, feminine, neuter?', that's very complicated and causes non-natives to make many gender mistakes (mistakes which sound generally ridiculous and annoying to native speakers for whom it comes naturally that a 'table' is feminine for example).
Not to mention that in some of those languages with grammatical genders, adjectives and past participles also agree in gender with the nouns they qualify, so the whole sentence become gender dependant and if you make a single mistake it just sounds totally wrong.

Obviously the fact that English has no such grammatical difficulties (nouns have no gender, adjectives and past participles are invariable) is what makes it a simple language to learn.

And to get back to Norwegian, i could also mention that Norwegian (again like all Scandinavian languages) has the particularity to have a post-positioned definite article that gets attached to the noun (and agrees in gender and number with it) and therefore pretty much acts like a declension.
Again, English is much simpler, the definite article "the" is invariable and always before a noun.

(For people who don't quite get it, when you say 'the door' in English, it becomes the equivalent of 'doorthe' in Scandinavian languages, the definite article is attached to the end of the noun and acts like a declension, and of course the definite article has to agree in gender and number with the noun it is attached to.)

Also, as far as i know, Norwegian is devided into many 'varieties' (Bokmal, Riksmal, Nynorsk, Hognorsk, and so on) with sometimes rather important grammatical differences (some have 3 genders while others only 2 if i'm not mistaken) and that doesn't exactly look like something simple from a non-native point of view.
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Old 17-05-2006, 14:12   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haku
(For people who don't quite get it, when you say 'the door' in English, it becomes the equivalent of 'doorthe' in Scandinavian languages, the definite article is attached to the end of the noun and acts like a declension, and of course the definite article has to agree in gender and number with the noun it is attached to.)
Ha-ha, a real nightmare for non-natives. I had to learn both English and Swedish from scratch and can assure you that English is more functional + simplier. It's better developed as a language too.
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Old 17-05-2006, 15:32   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haku
the particularity to have a post-positioned definite article that gets attached to the noun (and agrees in gender and number with it) and therefore pretty much acts like a declension.
“ looks at haku with eyes as saucers” Really , you are so clever , sometimes you frighten me !

On the whole I am agree with you, though nobody mentioned the tricky parts of English. Take spelling for instance. Spelling could be hideous for people trying to learn the language . Where else can you see the words with 5 , 6 , 8 letters in it and half of them is silent ? They just stand there for spelling sake , like some old chairs in the furniture store . You actually not saying them. If you see a letter *s* or *k* or *t*etc. in Russian word , you have to say them for sure , you never miss them ! You maybe never seen the word before written on the paper but you could write it just by hearing how it sounds. You may still make the mistake but not so dramatic as in English where all sense would be lost and nobody could understand what exactly you are trying to say . For every single word the beginners have to look up the dictionary and memorize . Why is womb pronounced woom and comb pronounced coam? And how about *nausea*?
That’s may be not a big deal when we just chat on the forum (look at everyday forum’s life , count the words we use on daily basis and you come up with 100 words if you are lucky ! ) Not very rich language in here , you must admit this . But if we are talking about learning REALLY good English , foreigners would have a hard time .
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Old 17-05-2006, 17:54   #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haku
Also, as far as i know, Norwegian is devided into many 'varieties' (Bokmal, Riksmal, Nynorsk, Hognorsk, and so on) with sometimes rather important grammatical differences (some have 3 genders while others only 2 if i'm not mistaken) and that doesn't exactly look like something simple from a non-native point of view.
Heh... Bokmål and Nynorsk are the only types of Norwegian. Bokmål is the new name for Riksmål. The use of Riksmål grammatics have died out really, and Høgnorsk? I don't think it has been mentioned about for quite some decades. Bokmål, or Riksmål if you like, can have 2 genders, yeah. (in the modernizing it has been added a gander, femininum (aye? heh), but you don't really have to use it. I don't use it when I'm writing bokmål, which is my main form of norwegian.) Bokmål is spoken and written by 85-90 percent of the people. You have nynorsk with 10-15 percent, and they are all situated in west-norway. Also, these forms of norwegian are extremely similar. It's actually surprisingly similar compared to the fact they are mentioned as two different forms of norwegian.

But yeah, I guess you're right. The gender-thing could be a bitch But that wasn't honestly my biggest problem when I was learning German. Cause most noun are linked to different genders according to what letter(s) they end on. So you don't have to memorize every noun, only what type of noun goes for each gender. In german you'll see that most nouns ending on 'e' is feminine. But then again you have german with all it's exceptions. It' was the casuses that messed with my brain, and also the way each words change for "who" you're talking to/about for eeevery siiingle word. That's also the case in english. Example; I am, You are, He she it is, we are, you are, they are. In norwegian it's: Jeg er, du er, han hun det er, vi er, dere er, de er. The same all over. I'd think that makes it so much easier for people. At least german was a bitch for me with all that stuff And then you have all the strong and weak verbs and what not you have to memorize.
Quote:
Originally Posted by marina
though nobody mentioned the tricky parts of English. Take spelling for instance
A very good point. Since I've been talking about Norwegian I can only say that from the mid 1800s till now the goal has been to make the language you write similar to the one you speak. Words are pronounced as they are written. The only little thing that's still haunting the language is the o (in different situations pronounced either o or å in norwegian). But it's not that important really, so yeah.. Heh.
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Old 17-05-2006, 18:42   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marina
Take spelling for instance. Spelling could be hideous for people trying to learn the language ....Why is womb pronounced woom and comb pronounced coam? And how about *nausea*?
Everybody wants to convince us that english is the easiest language but we know better! If you learn english by listening, you can't read or write, and if you learn english out of books only, you don't understand the spoken words.

An example: How would you pronounce the fictive word 'ghoti'?

gh: enou-gh ->[inu-f] gh->f
o: w-o-men ->[w-i-min] o->i
ti: na-ti-on->[nei-sh-n] ti->sh

Result: 'ghoti' is pronounced 'fish'.

English is irrational and totally strange! So let's choose norwegian (or Boknorsk or Nymal or whatsoever) as our official EU 'esperanto' language.
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Old 17-05-2006, 19:16   #60
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I don't think we are choosing here, we are facing a reality where English is becomming more of an all-around international language. Spelling could get simplier with time as we already see between British and Am. English:
Colour - color, favour - favor for instance.
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