Random language thread 6

This is our main forum. Here, anything related to languages and linguistics can be discussed.

Moderator: Forum Administrators

User avatar
Ciarán12
Posts: 3427
Joined: 2011-12-31, 15:23
Real Name: Ciarán
Gender: male
Location: Baile Átha Cliath (Dublin)
Country: IE Ireland (Éire / Ireland)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby Ciarán12 » 2019-07-20, 11:44

My wife just referred to my torso as my "tórax", which I laughed at and explained that in English (to me, at least) that's only used for insects, so it made it sound like I was some kind of insectoid alien or something :P. Apparently it can apply equally to humans in Portuguese.

User avatar
Osias
Posts: 8388
Joined: 2007-09-09, 17:38
Real Name: Osias Junior
Gender: male
Location: Vitória
Country: BR Brazil (Brasil)
Contact:

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby Osias » 2019-07-20, 12:17

Pelo menos ela não é do tipo de pessoa que fala 'peitoral'. :D

(Osias, que feio, preconceito linguístico!)
2017 est l'année du (fr) et de l'(de) pour moi. Parle avec moi en eux, s'il te plait.

User avatar
Ciarán12
Posts: 3427
Joined: 2011-12-31, 15:23
Real Name: Ciarán
Gender: male
Location: Baile Átha Cliath (Dublin)
Country: IE Ireland (Éire / Ireland)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby Ciarán12 » 2019-07-22, 22:47

Osias wrote:Pelo menos ela não é do tipo de pessoa que fala 'peitoral'. :D

(Osias, que feio, preconceito linguístico!)


Bom, não sei se é considerado incorreto ou não, mas eu uso (e ela também, acho) a palavra 'peitoral' como adjetivo com o significado de 'relacionado ao peito', mas nunca pra dizer 'peito' em si.

‐------------------

It's funny how your brain works; I was just reading a facebook post in Irish when my wife walked past and said "ファッション" ('fashon' - 'fashion' in Japanese - she likes to say random words she's learning that she likes the sound of), except she mispronounced it as 'feshon', and (I'm convinced) because I was reading a post in Irish and we're always speaking Portuguese I at first interpreted this as 'feiseann', which would be the Portuguese word 'fechar' - 'to shut' turned into an Irish verb. I though it funny how oddly natural it would sound to me to say 'feiseann sé an doras' with the meaning 'he shuts the door' :P

User avatar
Osias
Posts: 8388
Joined: 2007-09-09, 17:38
Real Name: Osias Junior
Gender: male
Location: Vitória
Country: BR Brazil (Brasil)
Contact:

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby Osias » 2019-07-22, 23:29

:hmm:
2017 est l'année du (fr) et de l'(de) pour moi. Parle avec moi en eux, s'il te plait.

User avatar
Yasna
Posts: 2200
Joined: 2011-09-12, 1:17
Gender: male
Location: Boston
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby Yasna » 2019-07-22, 23:41

A friend just shared this tweet. There's a picture of an Irish text with Japanese transliteration, and above it the comment "英語を綴りと発音が一致しない非合理的な言語だと嘆く人たちにはとりあえずこのアイルランド語の例文を読んだ感想を言ってほしい" which roughly means "If you're one of those people who complain about English being an irrational language with spelling that doesn't match the pronunciation, I'd like to hear your thoughts about these example sentences in Irish".

Image
Ein Buch muß die Axt sein für das gefrorene Meer in uns. - Kafka

User avatar
linguoboy
Posts: 23229
Joined: 2009-08-25, 15:11
Real Name: Da
Location: Chicago
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby linguoboy » 2019-07-23, 0:18

Nobody who regularly uses the Japanese writing system gets to complain about the “irrationally” of any other script ever.
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons

kevin
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 2019
Joined: 2012-03-29, 11:07
Gender: male
Country: DE Germany (Deutschland)
Contact:

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby kevin » 2019-07-23, 21:44

Ciarán12 wrote:It's funny how your brain works; I was just reading a facebook post in Irish when my wife walked past and said "ファッション" ('fashon' - 'fashion' in Japanese - she likes to say random words she's learning that she likes the sound of), except she mispronounced it as 'feshon', and (I'm convinced) because I was reading a post in Irish and we're always speaking Portuguese I at first interpreted this as 'feiseann', which would be the Portuguese word 'fechar' - 'to shut' turned into an Irish verb. I though it funny how oddly natural it would sound to me to say 'feiseann sé an doras' with the meaning 'he shuts the door' :P

Confusion about a single word with four languages involved at once is pretty impressive. :)

User avatar
Osias
Posts: 8388
Joined: 2007-09-09, 17:38
Real Name: Osias Junior
Gender: male
Location: Vitória
Country: BR Brazil (Brasil)
Contact:

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby Osias » 2019-07-23, 22:08

linguoboy wrote:Nobody who regularly uses the Japanese writing system gets to complain about the “irrationally” of any other script ever.

:yep: :yep: :yep:
2017 est l'année du (fr) et de l'(de) pour moi. Parle avec moi en eux, s'il te plait.

vijayjohn
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 24028
Joined: 2013-01-10, 8:49
Real Name: Vijay John
Gender: male
Location: Austin
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-07-24, 7:55

Eh, I'm fine with people complaining about English being irrational. English is fucking crazy, probably even worse than Japanese.
Ciarán12 wrote:Well, it seems you already have a strong opinion on him, was that formed purely from reading/hearing about him from third parties or reading what he's written?

From third parties
The impression I get is that most of his fame is derived from talks he's done and interviews he's given, so it just seems unlikely that you'd have heard of him, already have an opinion on him and yet never once actually heard him speak given how much audio and video there is of him around.

In general, you can rest assured that I don't give a shit what's popular and have very little patience for bigotry.
Yasna wrote:I'm trying to get a feel for how similar Arabic and Hebrew are. Does anyone have a good analogy, preferably using Indo-European languages?

For whatever it's worth, we've kind of talked about this before.
Ciarán12 wrote:My wife just referred to my torso as my "tórax", which I laughed at and explained that in English (to me, at least) that's only used for insects

To me also

User avatar
Ciarán12
Posts: 3427
Joined: 2011-12-31, 15:23
Real Name: Ciarán
Gender: male
Location: Baile Átha Cliath (Dublin)
Country: IE Ireland (Éire / Ireland)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby Ciarán12 » 2019-07-24, 19:26

vijayjohn wrote:Eh, I'm fine with people complaining about English being irrational. English is fucking crazy, probably even worse than Japanese.


I'd say Japanese is crazier than English, but in any case, both are crazier than Irish.

vijayjohn wrote:
Ciarán12 wrote:Well, it seems you already have a strong opinion on him, was that formed purely from reading/hearing about him from third parties or reading what he's written?

From third parties
The impression I get is that most of his fame is derived from talks he's done and interviews he's given, so it just seems unlikely that you'd have heard of him, already have an opinion on him and yet never once actually heard him speak given how much audio and video there is of him around.

In general, you can rest assured that I don't give a shit what's popular and have very little patience for bigotry.


Neither do I, but that wasn't really the point, we were discussing the phonolohical properties of his accent. Also, in general, I think it's better to make up your mind on what you think about someone based on what you heard or read them actually say rather than almost certainly biased third parties. In my case, I'm not totally sure if he's a bigot (though he could be motivated by bigotry), I don't like him because I find his style of argumentation frustratingly vague and sound-bite-y, it makes it difficult to determine what he means by what he says.

User avatar
linguoboy
Posts: 23229
Joined: 2009-08-25, 15:11
Real Name: Da
Location: Chicago
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby linguoboy » 2019-07-25, 15:46

I'm currently reading a novel by a Xhosa author and the phonetic values of Xhosa orthography take some getting used to. X, q, and c (and their digraphs) aren't bad once you figure out that each represents a series of clicks (lateral, alveolar, and dental, respectively). Using h for both aspiration and slack voice is natural enough if you're used to transliterations of Indic scripts. But it is really odd to me to see r used for both a trill and and a velar fricative. So the name of the Gxarha river is pronounced [ɡ̊ǁʱa̤xa] and not--as one might reasonably expect--*[ɡ̊ǁʱa̤r̥a] or [ɡ̊ǁʱa̤ra̤].
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons

vijayjohn
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 24028
Joined: 2013-01-10, 8:49
Real Name: Vijay John
Gender: male
Location: Austin
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-08-05, 9:00

I learned today that this atoll is in the Solomon Islands but happens to have a Malay name, apparently assigned by a Dutch guy named Abel Tasman (also the first European to visit Tasmania).
Ciarán12 wrote:Neither do I, but that wasn't really the point, we were discussing the phonolohical properties of his accent.

Well, we were talking about North American accents, and you brought him up and expressed surprise at me expressing an opinion about him without hearing him first. But anyway:
Also, in general, I think it's better to make up your mind on what you think about someone based on what you heard or read them actually say rather than almost certainly biased third parties.

Except that in this case, the "almost certainly biased third parties" are all people on this forum, and I already share their biases in general, so I don't think it's very likely that I'll develop a different bias.

In any case, people have views about other people without listening to them all the time, and they're not necessarily wrong. You don't have to listen to Gandhi or Hitler or Kim Il-sung to form a reasonably accurate opinion of any of them, for example.

User avatar
razlem
Posts: 2266
Joined: 2011-01-10, 3:28
Real Name: Ben
Gender: male
Location: San Francisco
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby razlem » 2019-08-10, 19:19

I heard a French person use /vuh/ or /vuf/ (possibly bilabial fricative) for "vous". Is that a feature of a particular dialect?
American English (en-us)::German (de)::Standard Spanish (es) Swedish (sv) Mandarin (zh)::Choctaw (cho) Finnish (fi) Irish (ir) Arabic (ar)
Image wia wi nehas-kolwatos lae angos! Check out my IAL Angos
Image Contributor to the Houma Language Project
I have a YouTube channel! I talk about languages and stuff: Ben DuMonde

User avatar
Luís
Forum Administrator
Posts: 7750
Joined: 2002-07-12, 22:44
Location: Lisboa
Country: PT Portugal (Portugal)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby Luís » 2019-08-10, 23:08

I hadn't logged in to Duolingo in quite a while. I decided to check their Arabic course today and apparently you now have to pay not to see ads. Yikes.
Quot linguas calles, tot homines vales

vijayjohn
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 24028
Joined: 2013-01-10, 8:49
Real Name: Vijay John
Gender: male
Location: Austin
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-08-11, 3:42

razlem wrote:I heard a French person use /vuh/ or /vuf/ (possibly bilabial fricative) for "vous". Is that a feature of a particular dialect?

I'm pretty sure it's not phonemic, and I don't think that's a feature that's even limited to French, let alone to a particular dialect of it. That's a process similar to word-final devoicing. I see no reason to believe it isn't cross-linguistically common. People just seem to be especially sensitive to this in the case of French for some reason. It happens with word-final [i], too.

User avatar
OldBoring
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 5897
Joined: 2012-12-08, 7:19
Real Name: Francesco
Gender: male
Location: Milan
Country: IT Italy (Italia)
Contact:

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby OldBoring » 2019-08-13, 17:02

To me French sounds like they add a "breath" after every word. :silly:

User avatar
Dormouse559
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 6543
Joined: 2010-05-30, 0:06
Real Name: Matthew
Gender: male
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby Dormouse559 » 2019-08-13, 22:46

razlem wrote:I heard a French person use /vuh/ or /vuf/ (possibly bilabial fricative) for "vous". Is that a feature of a particular dialect?

I don't know if it's dialectal, but I've noticed France French speakers sometimes add a bit of frication after their high vowels. It seems more common utterance-finally, and like vijay said, it's non-phonemic. The example I have in my back pocket is this clip from a TV show where a girl pronounces "oui" as [wiç]. Earlier in the video though, ~00:19, she pronounces it [wi].
N'hésite pas à corriger mes erreurs.

User avatar
linguoboy
Posts: 23229
Joined: 2009-08-25, 15:11
Real Name: Da
Location: Chicago
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby linguoboy » 2019-08-14, 21:12

So on the theme of "English words having very different connotations from their Romance cognates", I checked to see how the title of Die unendliche Geschichte is translated into Spanish and found it's La historia interminable. In English, The Interminable Story sounds like a story you can't for to be over. (Quoth the OED entry for interminable "(In modern use frequently exaggerative, implying impatience or disgust at the length of something.)".) Even unending and endless have a whiff of this implication, which is probably why the English translation has the title The Neverending Story. This evokes the phrase "I never want(ed) it to end!", which is praise for something highly enjoyable.
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons

vijayjohn
Language Forum Moderator
Posts: 24028
Joined: 2013-01-10, 8:49
Real Name: Vijay John
Gender: male
Location: Austin
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-08-15, 23:24

I've been getting a few online translation review tasks from two different companies. Both companies have some text in Malayalam and get someone else to translate them into English. Then they ask me to review the translation for accuracy, grammar, etc. The first company first contacted me two months ago. They had a couple of documents that were basically part of a land deed. The second company first contacted me three weeks ago. They have a collection of sentences pulled off of random sources from the Internet arranged in no particular order as far as I can tell.

In the case of the second company in particular, I seriously doubt they realize how difficult it is even just for native speakers to read the original text in Malayalam. I'm hoping that the first company at least understood that land deeds have lots of legalese and are hard for anyone to understand, plus most native speakers of Malayalam could probably understand English more easily than formal written Malayalam by now. But the problem isn't much smaller for written Malayalam on the Internet in general. If you took all the Malayalam sentences I've seen from these two companies and showed them to the entire population of Malayalam-speakers, native or otherwise, I would be surprised if more than 100 people could understand most of them without any problem.

User avatar
linguoboy
Posts: 23229
Joined: 2009-08-25, 15:11
Real Name: Da
Location: Chicago
Country: US United States (United States)

Re: Random language thread 6

Postby linguoboy » 2019-08-16, 17:21

vijayjohn wrote:I'm hoping that the first company at least understood that land deeds have lots of legalese and are hard for anyone to understand, plus most native speakers of Malayalam could probably understand English more easily than formal written Malayalam by now.

Many years ago, I was doing some German translation for my aunt and I finally had to tell her to find someone else because of all the legalese. These were official documents related to a lawsuit and while I know a fair bit of legal jargon in English (because my father was a lawyer), I knew nothing at all about the German legal system at the time so I didn't know how anything matched up.
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons


Return to “General Language Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest