Monthly Archives: June 2013

Language quiz

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

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Language, Quiz questions 9 Comments

Archerien

An interesting word that came up in my Breton lesson today is archerien, which means police. It caught my attention because it has no obvious connection to the word police, and because it is completely different to the equivalent words in other Celtic languages: – Welsh: heddlu (“peace force”) – Cornish: kreslu (“peace host”) – […]

Breton, Chinese, Cornish, Danish, English, Estonian, French, German, Greek, Hindi, Irish, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Language, Latin, Manx, Scottish Gaelic, Spanish, Welsh, Words and phrases 12 Comments

Hop on a call

An email I received yesterday contained the sentence “Would be happy to hop on a call to discuss should you change your mind.” The expression to hop on a call particularly caught my attention as it’s not one I’ve come across before. In this context I would have said “to give you a call”. Have […]

English, Language 6 Comments

Pibeqɛdæ – new con-script

Here’s a script, called Pibeqɛdæ, that I constructed this afternoon based on the letter p, mainly. It has most of the phonemes used in English, and could be further extended. I put it together just to demonstate to a visitor to Omniglot how you might make a con-script. It turned out quite well, I think. […]

Writing 5 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 8 Comments

Tag questions, innit!

Tag questions or question tags are interrogative fragments (tags) added to statements making them into sort of questions. They tend to be used more in colloquial speech and informal writing than in formal writing, and can indicate politeness, emphasis, irony, confidence or lack of it, and uncertainty. Some are rhetorical and an answer is not […]

English, French, German, Grammar, Irish, Italian, Language, Manx, Polish, Russian, Scottish Gaelic, Spanish, Welsh 15 Comments

Apocope

I learned a new word today – apocope [əˈpɒkəpiː], which is the loss of phonemes from the ends of words, particularly unstressed vowels. It comes from the Greek word ἀποκόπτω (apokoptein), which means ‘cutting off’ and comes from ἀπό (apo-), ‘away’ and κόπτω (koptein), ‘to cut’. Apocope is a mechanism which erodes some inflections and […]

English, Etymology, Greek, Language, Linguistics 12 Comments

New video – The Interview

I just finished a new video which features a job interview in which one or both or the participants is having a laugh. Or are they being serious? If you fancy translating the dialogue into any other languages, just let me know, and I’ll send you the script.

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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 5 Comments

Norsk

Recently I’ve been converting cassette recordings for my Colloquial Norwegian course into mp3s. I wasn’t planing to on learning Norwegian just yet, but would like to at some point. I listened to the recordings with half an ear, and glanced at the book now and then, and found that I could make some sense of […]

Language, Norwegian 8 Comments