Archive for the Category: Language

La plume de ma tante

I wrote a new song last week based on the phrase ‘la plume de ma tante‘ (My aunt’s quill/pen/feather). This phrase cropped up in a conversation I had with friends a few weeks ago when we were talking about learning languages, and how languages are taught. According to Wikipedia this phrase possibly appeared in French […]

Also posted in English, French, Language learning, Music, Songs 4 Comments

Language quiz

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…

Also posted in Quiz questions 8 Comments

Little donkey bridges

I learnt an interesting word in Dutch today – ezelsbruggetje (“little donkey bridge”), which means a mnemonic, which associates words and other things you want to remember with images. A number of possible origins for this word are given on ezelsbrug.nl, my favourite of which is that when donkeys were commonly used in the countryside […]

Also posted in Dutch, English, Words and phrases 3 Comments

Quatschen

I came across an interesting German word today – quatschen – which means to gab; to piffle; to talk rubbish; to chew the fat; to shoot the breeze; to blab; to yak; to squelch; to squidge [source]. It appears in a blog post in the sentence: Aber da fragt auf dem Gathering auch niemand mehr, […]

Also posted in English, German, Words and phrases 6 Comments

Ceceando (lisping)

Last night there was some discussion between some of my Spanish and Colombian friends about why the letters z and c (when followed by e or i) are pronounced /θ/ – like the th in thin – in most of Spain, apart from in Andalusia and the Canary Islands, and as /s/ in the rest […]

Also posted in English, Spanish 5 Comments

Jacob’s join

Yesterday I discovered a term for a potluck meal (one at which each guest contributes some food or drink) which I hadn’t heard before – Jacob’s join. My mum used it, and told me that it’s commonly used in Lancashire, where she lives. I don’t remember hearing this when I was growing up there, but […]

Also posted in English, Words and phrases 6 Comments

Language quiz

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…

Also posted in Quiz questions 6 Comments

Social aspects of language learning

In a paper I read recently – The Contemporary Esperanto Speech Community by Adelina Solis – the idea that female language learners tend to prefer going to language classes, as this gives their studies a social aspect, and that male language learners are more likely to learn on their own, is discussed. This was based […]

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Polyglot Gathering Berlin 2015

I got back from the Polyglot Gathering in Berlin about an hour ago. I took the train all the way from Berlin to Bangor, via Cologne, Brussels, London, Crewe and Chester, leaving Berlin just before 7am this morning, and arriving in Bangor just after 9pm this evening. On the way there I also travelled by […]

Also posted in Breton, Chinese, Cornish, Czech, Dutch, English, Esperanto, French, German, Irish, Italian, Japanese, Language learning, Manx, Portuguese, Scots, Scottish Gaelic, Serbian, Sign language, Slovak, Spanish, Swedish, Taiwanese, Welsh 3 Comments

Language quiz

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…

Also posted in Quiz questions 2 Comments
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