Language quiz

Here’s a recording in a mystery language.

Can you identify the language, and do you know where it’s spoken?

This entry was posted in Language, Quiz questions.

12 Responses to Language quiz

  1. TJ says:

    Moroccan Arabic or Berber.

  2. prase says:

    Sounds semitic. To pick a random guess, Mehri.

    TJ, I thought you are an Arab. I am surprised that you are unable to tell Moroccan Arabic apart from Berber.

  3. Trond Engen says:

    I suppose the answer is already given, but aren’t there too few initial t’s for Berber? If I were answering this in a vacuum I’d probably offer something like Mehri too, but now I’ll try Hassaniya (Mauretanian Arabic).

  4. sda says:

    It sound like Mongolian.

  5. Andrew says:

    Other people are saying Semitic/Arabic and…I can see that, and it might be, but honestly to me it sounds more like an indigenous American (North or South I’m not sure, though I’m leaning towards North American) language.

    I frequently fail these spectacularly, so I’ll not be surprised when I found out it’s African or West Asian or something…


  6. d.m.falk says:

    Not Berber, since it’s not a Semitic language, and this clearly is. I’ll go with TJ and say Maghrebi Arabic (Morroccan, Western Saharan, Algerian- Somewhere in that part). Maghrebi Arabic is not as easily understood by eastern Arabs, being that it developed more in isolation from the main eastern Arab parts of the Arab world.


  7. TJ says:

    prase: Moroccan (colloquial) Arabic is hard to understand for people who are not from that region (like me). If the talk was in standard Arabic, yeah, I would understand it (whether from Morocco, Algeria, Syria and so on). And as d.m. falk said, the language(s) in the Arabian west developed somehow in isolation somehow by the time of the raise of the Abbasids (Abbasids couldn’t control the west and Andalusia, and they remained Umayyad or Umayyad-like until the exodus of Arabs).

    However, I can’t understand the details, but the general meaning is about Jesus (The Messiah) and like someone is inviting others to talk or to narrate to them the story of Jesus.

  8. TJ says:

    Correction: sorry … it is telling the nativity story according to the Bible.

  9. Simon says:

    The answer is Moroccan Arabic (الدارجة), a variety of Maghrebi Arabic spoken in Morocco.

    The recording comes from the GRN.

  10. TJ says:

    ah yes … Daarjah دارجة means “colloquial” or “common (dialect)”

  11. prase says:

    TJ: I know it can be difficult to understand, but I was interested just in recognition. I can, as a Slavic speaker, relatively easily tell apart e.g. Bulgarian from Turkish spoked in Bulgaria, although I understand neither. But with the latter, I would have even no idea what it was being about. So I was surprised that you could think it might be Berber when you have basically understood the topic. But perhaps Berber has adopted so much from Arabic that it became partly intelligible…

  12. TJ says:

    Prase: ah in that case, I can say it is because I’m not exposed so much to the western Arabian culture, and for that, it is kind of hard for me to tell apart (because I don’t have knowledge about Berber already). As you said, I’m not sure if Berber and Moroccan Arabic there are like mutually understood by speakers and I don’t know how much Berber is affected by Arabic.

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