How many languages is enough?

I came across an interesting article in The Guardian today about Alexander Arguelles, who says, “I can read about three dozen languages and speak most of them fluently, and I’ve studied many more.” The headline, “Experience: I can speak 50 languages”, is perhaps a slight exaggeration of the kind that’s common in these kinds of articles. The subheading is, ‘I’m often asked what the secret is. The truth is it’s mostly down to endless hours of reading, studying and practising grammar’, which neatly sums up one approach to language learning.

Have you got to the stage where you feel you have taken on enough languages? Or are these always other languages that you’d like to learn one of these days?

Recently I’ve been concentrating mainly on 15 of my languages, and have been trying to maintain and improve my knowledge of them. There are plenty of other languages out there that I’d like to have a go at, but I’ve been resisting the temptations so far.

This entry was posted in English, Language, Language learning.

6 Responses to How many languages is enough?

  1. Jayarava says:

    Never enough! Nor enough time and energy.

  2. Jim Morrison says:

    I suppose if you like the process of learning languages, you will always keep doing it.
    I like speaking other languages but I also like learning them.

  3. MadFall says:

    Although I only know two foreign languages (French, Spanish) I am not looking to learn more. But the exception must be for Dutch which whenever I encounter it strikes me like an intriguing ghost of English. So similar in structure and the vocabulary seems somehow familiar too. I can’t help absorbing bits and pieces.

  4. It’s never ending learning, never enough.

  5. IronMike says:

    There’s always more languages out there.

  6. Lyng says:

    No, there are not enough resources on the ones I’d like to learn.

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