Vlürch wrote:Some languages have definitely been more influenced by other languages than Finnish has been by IE languages, but I don't know of any other cases where at least a third of Swadesh list words have been gradually replaced
I think this may be true of Malayalam, for example (but I'd have to check to make sure. Also, which Swadesh list? There's more than one. Incidentally, this is the sort of thing that's so problematic about the Swadesh list).
Presumably all of them. Also, remember how you once told me there's only the
Swadesh list when I mentioned "a Swadesh list"? I'm still not sure why they can't each be a
All these tongue emoticons...
Nevahööd of any of this.
Lur wrote:Wait, wait. I don't get it. Finnish nationalists want the language to be more like other languages? What?
Yeah, because a lot of "Finnish nationalists" are actually ethnic Swedes or Russians, or Finns who took Swedish (or rarely Russian) names and started identifying as "Nordic". Most Finns don't really care about nationalism, so the ones that do are often heavily influenced by Swedish and/or Russian nationalism; there are actual Finnish nationalists who don't want Finland to become more like Sweden or Russia, too, of course, but most of them are idiots as well.
Anyway, the early Finnish nationalists basically concultured modern Finland into existence. Unsurprisingly, they were mostly Swedish, German and Russian rather than Finnish... I'm fine with the fact that Finland was basically a concountry and a big part of its culture was invented by non-Finns with influences from Swedish and Russian culture, but it pisses me off that the next generation of nationalists didn't keep making shit up or looking into Turanism and instead started building a "Nordic narrative" influenced by white supremacy.
Lur wrote:Also what is that "definite article"?
The third-person inanimate pronoun se
, literally "it". It's often used like the English definite article "the", although there are subtle differences and it's obviously not the only thing it's used for (eg. it's also equivalent to "that"); I'm pretty sure it'll never be transformed into an exclusive definite article because it's informally used to refer to humans as well, so no matter how much Finnish ends up being influenced by English, it won't go that far. Still, for example "se peruna" could mean both "that potato" and "the potato" depending on the context; it couldn't mean "this potato", though. Anyway, it could be used in advertising as a tag or whatever, "se peruna", with the implication "the
potato" (as in the best
Lur wrote:(The syntax doesn't seem "English" to me from the outside, but maybe I don't know enough)
Well, technically it's possible to have completely "un-English" or even "anti-Indo-European" sentences, especially in formal writing, but informally those would sound unnatural.
Lur wrote:I just keep thinking how something like Japanese can have like two thirds of vocabulary and certains sounds of foreign origin (a situation that may be typical of small languages bordering on big, prestigious empires/languages?) but we don't think of it that way because the language has a prestige the way it is...