Archive for the Category: Spanish

Sabhal Mòr Ostaig

This week I am doing a course in Scottish Gaelic songs at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, the Gaelic college on the Isle of Skye. While all the songs I’m learning are in Gaelic, the class it taught mainly in English, so I don’t get to speak much Gaelic in class. Outside class there are plenty of […]

Also posted in English, French, German, Irish, Italian, Japanese, Language, Language learning, Music, Russian, Scottish Gaelic, Songs, Travel, Welsh 1 Comment

Embracing the other

People who enjoy learning languages, travelling, learning about different cultures and/or meeting people from different countries tend to be more open to difference, and more tolerant. At least that is my experience. While other people might be more inclined to fear the different and the foreign. In UK schools the most widely-taught languages are French, […]

Also posted in English, French, German, Language, Language learning 3 Comments

Languages in Newcastle

Last weekend I went to see a friend in Newcastle, and while we were exploring the place, I was listening out for languages other than English. The only ones I heard were Mandarin and Spanish, and my friend and I spoken mainly in English and Welsh, with a bit of Czech thrown in for variety. […]

Also posted in Chinese, Czech, English, Language, Travel, Welsh 8 Comments

Awakening forgotten languages

Last night at ukulele club there was a new member from Spain, and I talked a bit with her in Spanish. It’s a long time since I’ve studied any Spanish, and I rarely use it these days, so I thought I’d forgotten most of it, but I found that I can still have a basic […]

Also posted in English, German, Language, Language learning 3 Comments

A Guide to Paisa Spanish

This is guest post written by Connor Grooms, who learned Spanish to a B1 conversational level in a month and made the film, “Spanish in a Month: A Documentary About Language Learning” about it. A few months ago, I learned Spanish to a B1 conversational level in a month while living in Medellín, Colombia. If […]

Also posted in English, Language, Language learning 1 Comment

Multilingual musicians

A Sardinian friend of mine, Elena Piras, knows six languages (Sardinian, Italian, English, Scottish Gaelic, French and Spanish) and sings in most of them, plus a few others, including Scots, Bulgarian and Georgian. Here’s a recording of a performance from earlier this year in which she sings in Sardinian, Scots, English, Scottish Gaelic and Bulgarian. […]

Also posted in Bulgarian, English, French, Georgian, Italian, Language, Music, Pronunciation, Sardinian, Scots, Scottish Gaelic, Songs 2 Comments

Multilingual New York

One thing I noticed in New York was that there was a lot of Spanish around – in bilingual English/Spanish signs at the airport, and on trains and boats. There were also multilingual signs on the subway in English, Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Korean and Haitian Creole. I heard many languages being spoken by local people […]

Also posted in English, Language 5 Comments

Polyglot Conference, New York

This weekend I am in New York for the 2015 Polyglot Conference. I arrived yesterday afternoon after an uneventful flight from Manchester. It took a couple of hours to get out of the airport, and another hour or so to Manhattan. Last night I met up with some other polyglots near the Statan Island ferry […]

Also posted in Chinese, Conlangs, English, Esperanto, French, German, Irish, Japanese, Language, Manx, Portuguese, Proto-Indo-European, Scottish Gaelic, Taiwanese, Toki Pona, Travel, Welsh 1 Comment

Súilíní

I discovered an interesting word in Irish yesterday – súilíní [ˈsˠuːl̪ʲiːn̪ʲiː] – which is a diminutive form of súil [sˠuːl̪ʲ] (eye) and means literally “small eyes”, and actually means eyelets, an aperture-sight, or bubbles. For example, uisce gan súilíní is still water (“water without bubbles”) [source]. More common Irish words for bubbles are bolgán and […]

Also posted in Breton, Catalan, Cornish, Danish, English, Etymology, German, Irish, Language, Norwegian, Portuguese, Proto-Indo-European, Swedish, Welsh, Words and phrases 7 Comments

Coasts and competitors

Sometimes when I see new words in English or other languages I can immediately break them down into their component parts and work out their roots, but other times I just accept words as whole entities without trying to work out their derivation. One such word in Welsh is arfordir, which I hadn’t tried to […]

Also posted in English, Etymology, French, Language, Latin, Proto-Indo-European, Welsh, Words and phrases Comments Off on Coasts and competitors
%d bloggers like this: