Monthly Archives: June 2007


We were practising questions and answers in class today. There are no exact equivalents of yes and no in Welsh. Instead when answering a question, you repeat the verb in the appropriate form, or in some cases you use other words. For example, responses to the question Wyt ti’n mywnhau’r cwrs ma? (Are you enjoying this course?), […]

English, Language, Travel, Welsh 5 Comments


I arrived in Lampeter yesterday evening after a long train and bus journey. After dumping my bags in my room – I’m staying in one of the university residences – I had wander around the town. There wasn’t many people about and only a few of the pubs and restaurants were open. I eventually found […]

Travel, Welsh 3 Comments

Language quiz

Here is today’s mystery language. Does it sound at all familiar? The audio file is quite large, so will probably be a bit slow to download.

Language, Quiz questions 6 Comments

Name the language

Here is a recording of a mystery language. Any ideas which language it is? This language is spoken mainly on an island, and is related to languages spoken on a nearby continent. By the way, I’ll be away for the next two weeks on the Summer Welsh course at the University of Wales Lampeter. During […]

Language, Quiz questions 12 Comments

Linguistic Human Rights

Today I came across some interesting online lecture notes by Professor Peter L Patrick of the Department of Language & Linguistics at the University of Essex. The lecture is entitled “Linguistic Human Rights: A Sociolinguistic Introduction” and covers many of the issues discussed in a recent post about language use in the work place. There […]

Language 12 Comments


During the past few months only one or two constructed scripts per week have been coming into Omniglot headquarters, sometimes fewer than that. This week however, there has been a small flood of them with five new scripts so far, two of which are now online: Betacap, an alternative alphabet for English invented by Polly, […]

Writing 14 Comments

Which Mr Wang do you mean?

On the news this morning they mentioned that China is suffering from a chronic shortage of names, which leads to many cases of mistaken identity. They gave an example of one man who was arrested by mistake – it was one of his neighbours with the same name who the police were after. The ordinary […]

Chinese, Identity, Language 17 Comments

Language in the workplace

According to an article on Eurolang, the travel company Thomas Cook has requested that staff in it’s branch in Bangor “speak English when discussing work-related matters in the workplace”. This has been interpreted as a ban on staff speaking Welsh in what is one of the strongest Welsh-speaking areas. As a result, there have been […]

Language, Welsh 14 Comments

Word of the day – 衛星

The Chinese word for satellite, 衛星 [卫星] (wèixīng) means literally ‘guard(ing)/defend(ing) star’. When I came across this word the other day while working on a Chinese version of a website, it took me a few moments to work out what it meant. Eventually I deciphered it from the context and the second character, which I […]

Chinese, English, Language, Welsh, Words and phrases 3 Comments

Language quiz

Today’s mystery language is an Austronesian language spoken mainly on one island in the Pacific. Can you guess or do you know which language it is?

Language, Quiz questions 8 Comments
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