View Poll Results: What languages can you speak?

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  • English

    88 94.62%
  • French

    29 31.18%
  • German

    52 55.91%
  • Other European language such as Welsh, Scots, Irish etc.

    20 21.51%
  • Icelandic

    2 2.15%
  • Swedish

    11 11.83%
  • Norwegian

    12 12.90%
  • Italian, Spanish, Portuguese

    18 19.35%
  • Other

    17 18.28%
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Thread: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

  1. #291
    Senior Member Blutgräfin's Avatar
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    German is my native language and I speak and understand English. In school, I had Spanish and French, but I can speak only a little bit.

  2. #292
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    I took German but I didn't have a good teacher and I didn't study/apply myself.
    More or less my story. My elementary school teacher in German was mediocre at best and it was from her that I got the impression that German was a useless, boring, "uncool" language. I instead poured all my time and effort into English.
    My Gymnasium teacher in German was a lot better but the damage to me was already done and she was unable to undo it in time. I dutifully attended classes but only gave a mediocre performance.
    In retrospect it is one of my biggest regrets about my Gymnasium time: Had I known what I know now of the world I would have studied diligently and sought to become fluent in German.

    I really love the sound of the German language and would like to study it, but there's not much use for it in California. And I doubt I'll ever make it back over to Germany anyway.
    German book culture is filled with interesting authors of just about any genre you care to mention. In addition, German is the second most used language for peer-reviewed academic papers (English of course being number one). That is one of my motivations for attaining fluency in German.
    Besides, a few weeks in Berlin is by no means an expensive vacation and could prove rewarding for anyone interested in Germanic affairs.

  3. #293
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    I speak fluent French and my German is not bad (although I sometimes think it looks better on Skadi than it sounds in real life )

    Actually, I had German cracked in the 1980's - in a Schwäbisch kind of way - but then I split up with my girlfriend in '86 and didn't speak the language again for over 20 years. I didn't even realise I'd forgotten it all until I arrived in Cologne in 2007 and thought ... WTF??

    So I'm now learning it for the second time, almost from scratch. I do enjoy a good challenge, although my wife has some misgivings about me finding a German girlfriend this time around

    Had I known what I know now of the world I would have studied diligently and sought to become fluent in German.
    Yes, Sindig_og_stoisk, that's a very good point and I agree with you entirely!

  4. #294
    Senior Member TrvePest's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blutgräfin View Post
    German is my native language and I speak and understand English. In school, I had Spanish and French, but I can speak only a little bit.
    100% the same by me.

    Additional ich speak Suomi (Finnisch) fluent.

  5. #295
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    When I was very young and in my first year of secondary school, we were taught Latin and French. Our schoolmaster told us that if we learnt Latin and practised hard to perfect our grammar and fluency, learning another Romance language, he was thinking specifically of French, would be made much easier after perfecting Latin. I guess there is a grain of truth in that.

    As far as Germanic languages are concerned, if one were to learn Standard German (High German) which has a large, though regular, grammar, and perfected it to the best of one's ability, then would learning another Germanic language, such as Danish or Dutch, be greatly facilitated by one's knowledge of German? Do you think, German-speaking multilinguists, there is any truth in this contention that having a good working knowledge of Standard German would make learning another Germanic language significantly easier?

  6. #296
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    When I was very young and in my first year of secondary school, we were taught Latin and French. Our schoolmaster told us that if we learnt Latin and practised hard to perfect our grammar and fluency, learning another Romance language, he was thinking specifically of French, would be made much easier after perfecting Latin. I guess there is a grain of truth in that.
    Definitely. I had one year of Latin in Gymnasium for the same reason, although only at a light level. Experiments with Interlingua (an artificially constructed language like Esperanto, but much more Romance in its grammar and stem vocabulary) have showed that it was a useful step towards learning any Romance language. For this reason I have considered learning a least some of Interlingua as a step towards later learning either French or Spanish.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interlingua

    Do you think, German-speaking multilinguists, there is any truth in this contention that having a good working knowledge of Standard German would make learning another Germanic language significantly easier?
    As part of improving my German vocabulary I have used a space repetition system named Anki. I was continually astounded by how similar words in Danish and German were and I made rapid progress because of the familiarity. As for Dutch, well, I have lived in dormitory with Dutch exchange students and would occasionally overhear their talks and try to understand them. It went a little like this:

    At first I recognise a phrase or a few words as being the same as it would be in Danish. Then I would vaguely be able to see a grammatical similarity to German. But then I would be overwhelmed by increasing amounts of incomprehensible gibberish until I would just give up. But the first limited understanding was clearly born from a close relationship between related Germanic languages. So yes, I am sure that me being a native Danish speaker with a modest grasp of German would be a great help should I ever decide to learn Dutch or Frisian.

  7. #297
    Senior Member Alfadis's Avatar
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    First of all, of course, I speak German. In school I learned English, Russian and Latin.
    If possible, I want to learn Swedish, too.

  8. #298
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    English and a very, very basic understanding of French which I learned at high school and attained a 'Higher' qualification in. I'd like to become fluent in many more languages though, such as the Scandinavian languages (including Old Norse) German and Gaelic (even though the latter serves little practical purpose in modern times).

    At my school, students were (and sadly, probably still are) offered only one foreign language to study. I don't there is anywhere near enough emphasis placed on the value of foreign languages in the school curriculum in Britain, why is why the vast majority of Brits today are monoglots.

  9. #299
    Senior Member hyidi's Avatar
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    I don't there is anywhere near enough emphasis placed on the value of foreign languages in the school curriculum in Britain,
    I think the main reason why Is because Britain's native language Is the world language.

    But with all this multicult and native whites bending down to migrants ways, I can see British being force to learn multiple 3rd world languages in the near future, If things don't change for the better.

  10. #300
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    I'm ashamed to say I'm a typical monolingual American. I've tried my hand at a few languages, but I just don't have a knack for it. I'm thinking about maybe picking up some of my ancestors' languages. Dutch in particular, but it's something I keep putting off. I guess I shouldn't.

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