In this episode I discuss which languages are easiest to learn for native speakers of English, and what factors make languages easy or difficult to learn, including grammar, spelling, pronunciation, vocabulary, the availablity of resources, and so on.
In this episode I talk about, and in, Gibberish – what it is, where it comes from, how I learnt it, and possible reasons why some people find it difficult to learn.
How to speak Gibberish:
Tunes features in this episode
Dancing on Custard / Dawnsio ar Gwstard – a tune I wrote on the harp in 2016.
In this episode I bring you news from the 2019 Polyglot Gathering, an annual get-together of polyglots and language lovers from all over the world. This year the Polyglot Gathering took place in Bratislava, Slovakia for the third time – it started in 2015 in Berlin, and was there for three years, then moved to Bratislava. The next Gathering will be in Teresin, near Warsaw in Poland from 26-30 May 2020.
I was planning to interview people at the Gathering, and to keep an audio diary, but was enjoying myself too much and decided to give you a flavour of the event after I got home. So this is the story of my Adventures in Polyglotland.
My badge from the Polyglot Gathering showing the languages I speak fluently, or at least fairly well:
N = native language, C = advanced level, B = intermediate level, A = basic / elementary level, en = English, cy = Cymraeg (Welsh), zh = 中文 [zhōngwén] – (Mandarin Chinese), ga = Gaeilge (Irish), es = español (Spanish), de = Deutsch (German), eo = Esperanto, gd = Gàidhlig (Scottish Gaelic), ja = Japanese, gv = Gaelg Vanninagh (Manx Gaelic), ru = Русский [Russkij] (Russian), cs = český (Czech), sv = Svenska (Swedish), da = Dansk (Danish).
Information about polyglot events: http://www.omniglot.com/events/
Music featured in this episode
In this episode I talk about the international language, or la lingva internacia, otherwise known as Esperanto. I look into it’s history and development, and discuss the language itself.
Here are some native speakers of Esperanto (they do exist) talking in Esperanto:
How Esperanto can help you to learn other languages:
This is an original song in Esperanto:
Music featured in this episode
The Esperanto anthem, La Espero, written by L.L. Zamenhof:
Mwmpwy Porthaethwy / Menai Bridge Fancy
More information about Esperanto:
This epsiode is about polyglottery and was partly recorded at the 2018 Polyglot Conference in Ljubljana in Slovenia.
I talk about what is a polyglot, how many languages you have to speak to call yourself a polyglot, and discuss what polyglots get up to, including the Polyglot Conference and other polyglot events, such as the Polyglot Gathering and LangFest. There are also some sound bites from participants in the conference in a variety of languages.
Definitions of polyglot:
- “A polyglot is a person who speaks or understands many languages; a person with a command of many languages” [Collins English Dictionary].
- “person who knows and is able to use several languages” [English Oxford Living Dictionaries].
Definitions of polyglottery:
- “The knowledge or use of several languages, polyglot character” [English Oxford Living Dictionaries].
Other takes on polyglottery
Websites of some of the people who took part in the episode
- Foreign Language Expertise with Alexander Arguelles
- How to get fluent, with Dr Popkins
- Lindsay Does Languages. Lindsay is also co-host of the Fluent Show podcast
- The Intrepid Guide – Language Guides & Travel Tips from Around the World
- LinguaMaterna – Learn a New Language Without The complications
- Wouter Corduwener’s YouTube channel
If you took part in this podcast and have a website, blog, YouTube channel, etc that you’d like to see included here, let me know in the comments.
Videos from Polylgot events
My photos and videos from polyglot events
Tunes featured in this episode
In this first episode of the Radio Omniglot Podcast, I talk about my own language learning adventures. About the languages I’ve learned, and how and why I learned them.
You can also read about my language learning adventures on Omniglot.
If you would like to take part in this podcast, you can contact me via Omniglot.
The music in this episode is a tune I wrote in January 2018 called Apple Blossom / Blodau Afal, played on the cavaquinho: