Funny Facts

Heard any good language-related jokes, stories or puns lately?

Funny Facts

Postby Anoran » Thu 25 Oct 2012 6:18 am

This is both a bit of a funny fact, and an open question for anyone that feels they have an idea.

In almost every language in the world, especially Indo-European languages, the m sound is associated with mothers, and fathers with d, f, or p. There are a few exceptions, of course, like Hungarian or Indonesian, which stem from entirely different language families... And then there's Georgian.

Mother is დედა (deda) and Father is მამა (mama). It's backwards!

It makes you wonder, was there some sort of screw up in translations back when the language was developing?

Feel free to add your own unusual facts about languages, or provide insight into why something might be.
Native: English
Fluent: C++, C, Javascript
Non-Fluent: Spanish
Conlangs: Elysiani, Melkovin, Solmeia, Sorone, Tartaran
Current Projects: Multiple conlangs & conscripts, Voynich Manuscript translation
User avatar
Anoran
 
Posts: 63
Joined: Fri 21 Sep 2012 8:14 am
Location: The Land Down Under The Land Down Under

Re: Funny Facts

Postby Yaziq » Sat 27 Oct 2012 4:18 pm

Words for father and mother most likely originate from the babbling of infants. In some ways natural languages seem to be affected by a collective roulette wheel which operates beyond our awareness. BTW, I'd like to know more about your work on the Voynich Manuscript. I wasn't aware that any translations had been accomplished.
Yaziq
 
Posts: 112
Joined: Tue 19 May 2009 5:58 pm

Re: Funny Facts

Postby Dan_ad_nauseam » Sat 27 Oct 2012 7:59 pm

Yaziq wrote:Words for father and mother most likely originate from the babbling of infants. In some ways natural languages seem to be affected by a collective roulette wheel which operates beyond our awareness. BTW, I'd like to know more about your work on the Voynich Manuscript. I wasn't aware that any translations had been accomplished.


The tendency to front nasals and stops in mother and farther words probably does reflect early development of these phonemes.
Dan_ad_nauseam
 
Posts: 219
Joined: Sat 18 Apr 2009 5:25 am

Re: Funny Facts

Postby Anoran » Sat 27 Oct 2012 8:29 pm

Yaziq wrote:Words for father and mother most likely originate from the babbling of infants. In some ways natural languages seem to be affected by a collective roulette wheel which operates beyond our awareness. BTW, I'd like to know more about your work on the Voynich Manuscript. I wasn't aware that any translations had been accomplished.


That is a common hypothesis, yes. I still find it amusing that the Georgian language (and some of its related tongues from the Kartvelian family) have the words swapped around, compared to the other 80% or so languages of the world.

As for my work on the Voynich Manuscript, well, there's a reason it says current projects in my signature. I've spent some time identifying various plants on the pages, some with certainty, others with doubt, and the rest of my work on it has been trying to sort out the morphology of the script.

And yes, Dan, it does seem like nasals are used for mother, and fricatives or plosives (not stops, from what I've seen) are used for father.
Native: English
Fluent: C++, C, Javascript
Non-Fluent: Spanish
Conlangs: Elysiani, Melkovin, Solmeia, Sorone, Tartaran
Current Projects: Multiple conlangs & conscripts, Voynich Manuscript translation
User avatar
Anoran
 
Posts: 63
Joined: Fri 21 Sep 2012 8:14 am
Location: The Land Down Under The Land Down Under

Re: Funny Facts

Postby Tikolm » Sat 10 Nov 2012 10:50 pm

Anoran wrote:fricatives or plosives (not stops, from what I've seen)
I have nothing to say, but what do you mean by "plosives but not stops"?? Plosives are stops.
Native: English
Fluent: français
Basic: Cymraeg
Really basic: Español, lingua latīna
Conlangs (current): tikolmil, llyffws, Arliks, dilir
(Website is at http://risteq.net/ if you ever want to visit. It's supposed to be in 4 languages.)
User avatar
Tikolm
 
Posts: 399
Joined: Mon 10 Aug 2009 8:09 pm
Location: Sylvara, Massachusetts

Re: Funny Facts

Postby Anoran » Sun 11 Nov 2012 8:10 am

Tikolm wrote:I have nothing to say, but what do you mean by "plosives but not stops"?? Plosives are stops.


I mean that they begin the syllable rather than ending it. Y'know, as in the common definition of the word 'stop', which kind of indicates an end to something.

Obviously, it isn't always the case though. "Dad" ends with a stop.
Native: English
Fluent: C++, C, Javascript
Non-Fluent: Spanish
Conlangs: Elysiani, Melkovin, Solmeia, Sorone, Tartaran
Current Projects: Multiple conlangs & conscripts, Voynich Manuscript translation
User avatar
Anoran
 
Posts: 63
Joined: Fri 21 Sep 2012 8:14 am
Location: The Land Down Under The Land Down Under

Re: Funny Facts

Postby Elijah » Sun 11 Nov 2012 10:55 pm

You mean the distinction between closed and open syllables?
Native: American English
Learning: Mandarin, Burmese, Japanese
Want to learn: Cantonese, ASL, Basque?
Elijah
 
Posts: 96
Joined: Sat 28 May 2011 7:24 am
Location: Colorado in the US

Re: Funny Facts

Postby Anoran » Sun 11 Nov 2012 11:38 pm

Yup. I guess mixing jargon with colloquialisms doesn't work too well here. :roll:
Native: English
Fluent: C++, C, Javascript
Non-Fluent: Spanish
Conlangs: Elysiani, Melkovin, Solmeia, Sorone, Tartaran
Current Projects: Multiple conlangs & conscripts, Voynich Manuscript translation
User avatar
Anoran
 
Posts: 63
Joined: Fri 21 Sep 2012 8:14 am
Location: The Land Down Under The Land Down Under

Re: Funny Facts

Postby ConnorRobertM » Wed 09 Jan 2013 9:40 pm

A funny poem found on this website - http://www.ahajokes.com/index.html

The English Language

Have you ever wondered why foreigners have trouble with the English Language?

Let's face it
English is a stupid language.
There is no egg in the eggplant
No ham in the hamburger
And neither pine nor apple in the pineapple.
English muffins were not invented in England
French fries were not invented in France.

We sometimes take English for granted
But if we examine its paradoxes we find that
Quicksand takes you down slowly
Boxing rings are square
And a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.

If writers write, how come fingers don't fing.
If the plural of tooth is teeth
Shouldn't the plural of phone booth be phone beeth
If the teacher taught,
Why didn't the preacher praught.

If a vegetarian eats vegetables
What the heck does a humanitarian eat!?
Why do people recite at a play
Yet play at a recital?
Park on driveways and
Drive on parkways

You have to marvel at the unique lunacy
Of a language where a house can burn up as
It burns down
And in which you fill in a form
By filling it out
And a bell is only heard once it goes!

English was invented by people, not computers
And it reflects the creativity of the human race
(Which of course isn't a race at all)

That is why
When the stars are out they are visible
But when the lights are out they are invisible
And why it is that when I wind up my watch
It starts
But when I wind up this observation,
It ends.

This very true right? :lol:
Fluent- English (Native)
Basic- French
Future- Danish, Icelandic, Czech, Welsh

Conlangs- Hanske, New Norse, and other silly ones made in five minutes.
User avatar
ConnorRobertM
 
Posts: 16
Joined: Sun 20 Feb 2011 9:19 am
Location: Canada

Re: Funny Facts

Postby ConnorRobertM » Wed 09 Jan 2013 9:43 pm

ConnorRobertM wrote:This very true right? :lol:


*This is very true right? :P
Fluent- English (Native)
Basic- French
Future- Danish, Icelandic, Czech, Welsh

Conlangs- Hanske, New Norse, and other silly ones made in five minutes.
User avatar
ConnorRobertM
 
Posts: 16
Joined: Sun 20 Feb 2011 9:19 am
Location: Canada

Next

Return to Language-related humour

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest