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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This entry was posted in Language, Quiz questions.

9 Responses to Language quiz

  1. Rauli says:

    I really have no idea, but it sounds like what the daughter of a Chinese man and Indonesian woman would speak :D

  2. Daniel says:

    A lot of Mandarin vocabulary (yiqi, ranhou…) and tones, but some Korean-sounding diphthongs and syllable-ending consonants (yeong) that you can’t find in Mandarin.

    Maybe Sichuanese Mandarin?

  3. David Eger says:

    There’s obviously some semblance of pitch accent in there, but it doesn’t sound like a tonal language in the Chinese sense. I wouldn’t recognise Mandarin vocabulary, but I hear some Chinese vowel sounds in there.

    The overall sound of the language it, to my ear, somewhere on the Korean-Japanese continuum. I’d hazard a guess that it is a Korean dialect, or related language, spoken in a neighbouring region of China.

  4. Christopher Miller says:

    It sounds to me like one of the Japonic languages of the Ryukyu archipelago.

  5. David Eger says:

    @Christopher: Your suggestion seems quite likely – mine is just a wild guess. It definitely sounds closer to Japanese that to anything Chinese or Indonesian.

  6. Petréa Mitchell says:

    Well, it sounds way more like Mandarin than Japanese to me. I don’t think that’s anything actually spoken in Japan. I would definitely guess it’s a minority language of China.

  7. No, I don’t think it’s Ryukyuan. I hear aspiration, tone, nasal consonants… I think it’s something spoken in mailand Southeast Asia-ish, but I can say that it’s not Khmer, Vietnamese, Thai, or Lao. My guess is Hmong. If not then, maybe Burmese. And if not that, then maybe Tibetan.

  8. Chris Waugh says:

    I’ll say definitely Sinitic. I would guess from the number of words near-identical to standard Mandarin that it’s one of the further-flung Mandarin dialects, though for some reason I doubt Sichuan. Wild stab: Somewhere in southern Jiangsu on the north bank of the Yangtze.

  9. Simon says:

    The answer is Gan, (赣语/江西话), a variety of Chinese spoken in mainly in Jiangxi province (江西省) in China.

    The recording comes from Phonemica.

    To me it sounds like badly pronounced Mandarin with bits from other varieties of Chinese.