Author Archives: Simon

I have worked in various parts of the UK, and in a few other countries, doing a variety of jobs in hotels, farms and offices. I currently make my living from my website, Omniglot, an online encyclopedia of writing systems and languages that makes money from adverts. I also play a variety of musical instruments, sing and write songs.

Language quiz

s

Here’s a recording in a mystery language. Can you identify the language, and do you know where it’s spoken? Like this:Like Loading…

Language, Quiz questions 8 Comments

Two wheels left here will be removed

s

If you’ve ever wonder how you would tell people not to park their bicycles in Latin and Ancient Greek, as I’m sure you have, the sign in the photo shows you. The Latin, Duae rotae hic relictae perimentur, apparently means “two wheels [cycles] left/abandoned here will be removed”. The Greek, Εηθαδε αηφθεητες δυοκυκλοι διαφθαρνσονται, apparently […]

English, Greek, Language, Latin 6 Comments

Multilingual conversations

s

At the French conversation group I go to most weeks we usually stick to French most of the time, however when the leader of the group isn’t there or leaves early, as she did last week and the week before, we often switch to English and/or Welsh. Most members of the group speak Welsh, as […]

English, French, Language, Welsh 3 Comments

Language quiz

s

Here’s a recording in a mystery language. Can you identify the language, and do you know where it’s spoken? Like this:Like Loading…

Language, Quiz questions 3 Comments

Mardy

s

The word mardy came up in conversation last night, and the friends who mentioned it, who are from Yorkshire and Lancashire, said that it could mean annoying or weak. As I hadn’t heard it before, I thought I’d find out more about it. According to Wiktionary means sulky or whinning, e.g. ‘She’s being a mardy […]

English, Etymology, Language, Words and phrases 7 Comments

One Person One Language (OPOL)

s

This post is based largely on an article by Francois Grosjean: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/life-bilingual/201504/one-person-one-language-and-bilingual-children One popular way to raise bilingual children is for each parent to speak only their native language with their children. For example the father will speak English and the mother will speak Spanish, and the children will acquire both languages. At first the […]

English, French, German, Irish, Language, Language acquisition, Linguistics, Spanish, Welsh 5 Comments

Language, accents and tourism

s

I came across an interesting article today about ways to attract tourists with regional accents and languages. It discuses moves to encourage the use of French in parts of Canada and Louisiana, and Irish in Ireland, as well as regional accents in Newfoundland and in Skane in southern Sweden. People from the regions are promoting […]

English, French, Irish, Language, Swedish, Travel Leave a comment

Language quiz

s

Here’s a recording in a mystery language. Can you identify the language, and do you know where it’s spoken? Like this:Like Loading…

Language, Quiz questions 4 Comments

Omniglot now mobile friendly

s

I think I’ve managed to make Omniglot work better on mobiles and other devices with small screens now. I know that the homepage goes a bit strange in IE when you make your browser narrow (not sure how to fix that), and there may be some other elements that are not behaving themselves, but it […]

General 5 Comments

Nebuď směšný!

s

I came across a lovely Czech word today – směšný [‘smɲeʃni:] – which means funny or ridiculous, and sounds quite funny to me. I think it comes from smích (laughter), from the Proto-Slavic *směxъ [source] Related words include: – směšnost = ridiculousness; absurdity – směšně = ridiculously – smich = laughter – smát = to […]

Czech, English, Language, Words and phrases 5 Comments
%d bloggers like this: