Monthly Archives: August 2012

Reading aloud

I heard an interesting programme on BBC Radio 4 yesterday about reading aloud. It discussed how people studied the skill of reading aloud during the 18th century, including how to stand, how to hold your head, and what to do with your hands and face. There were manuals which taught people how to read aloud […]

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English, Language, Language learning 3 Comments

Indo-European language origins

According to an article I came across today on the BBC, a study by researchers in New Zealand suggests that Indo-European languages originated in Anatolia about 8-9,500 years ago, and not in the Central Asian steppes about 5-6,000 years ago, as many believe. The researchers used methods developed to study virus epidemics to work out […]

Language 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?

Language, Quiz questions 7 Comments

Llongau gofod a selsig (Spaceships and sausages)

This is my latest little animation made using Xtranormal. It’s a silly little conversation between two robots which touches on such topics as the best way to get to the moon, a top secret Welsh spaceship, why vegetarians are at a disadvantage when it comes to local news and gossip, and ostrich sausages. The conversation […]

English, Language, Welsh 2 Comments

Bead houses

There’s a village near where I live called Betws-y-Coed [ˈbɛtʊs ə ˈkɔɨd], which means ‘prayer house in the wood’. I knew the meaning of the name, but hadn’t considered where the word betws might come from. Last night a friend told me that it comes from an English word ‘bead house’, meaning a prayer house […]

English, Etymology, Language, Welsh, Words and phrases 4 Comments

Stealth acquisitions in the insurance vertical

I received an email today from someone who apparently specializes “in stealth acquisitions of domain names for corporate end users in the insurance vertical.” I think this means that he buys domain names for insurance-related businesses. I’m not sure what stealth acquisitions are though, or what the insurance vertical might be. Any suggestions? Have you […]

English, Language 3 Comments

Best languages to study

According to an article I came across in the Daily Telegraph today, the best / most useful languages to study, for those in the UK, are: 1. German 2. French 3. Spanish 4. Mandarin 5. Polish 6. Arabic 7. Cantonese 8. Russian 9. Japanese 10. Portuguese The reasons why each language is useful vary quite […]

Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Language, Language learning, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish 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?

Language, Quiz questions 6 Comments

Ultd abbreviations

I came across the abbreviations ‘Ultd‘ today in an online add and it took me a few moments to realise that it meant unlimited. From the context it was obvious: the ad mentions Ultd texts and Ultd Internet, but without this context it wouldn’t be so obvious. Maybe they didn’t have enough space to write […]

Chinese, English, Language 8 Comments

My huckleberry friend

The phrase, my huckleberry friend, appears in one of the songs I’m learning at moment – Moon River. At a choir rehearsal last night one of the sopranos said that the word huckleberry means ‘a person who is right for a job’. I’d come across the word before but had never thought what it might […]

English, Language, Music, Words and phrases 4 Comments