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Everything posted by Antiquarian

  1. The silliest (and by far my most favourite) way of learning a language is by listening to my favourite Latin, Ancient Greek or gibberish songs. Then replace their lyrics with vocabulary or sentences I'm currently learning... then sing them aloud with passion. The lyrics then do not make sense, but it is entertaining, effective and addictive! Silly as it may seems yet there is fun and deep memorization taken place as I re-sing my favourite songs' lyrics with the words I am currently learning. Sincerely, The Antiquarian.
  2. The answer is both a Yes and a No. If you move to another country and speak their language, and not using your previous languages in daily life at the same time, then you'd lose your previous languages. Simply because the old languages are not a part of your current life anymore. And if this continues for many years, then previous languages could be lost over time as they are being replaced by newer languages. However, if you keep thinking or speaking in your previous languages, then those old languages can still be preserved. Even though you are in a new land with new people and new speech, you can still maintain your previous languages if you still think or speak in them. And if you meet new people who understand your previous languages, then this is an extra bonus. You can talk in your old languages to new people. If you teach it, then you can spread the old languages. It depends whether or not you choose to maintain and discontinue your previous languages. Regards, The Antiquarian.
  3. Yes it does. Many of our consonants and indeed complex words rely on the tongue heavily. Without the tongue, people won't be able to pronounce various words that have an intricate or complex sound to them. Especially words with heavy "r" and "d" pronunciations. The tongue is a primal communications tool and without it, we would have a complicated time pronouncing various words. The tongue is also important in languages with powerful consonants and words that have an assertive tone. Also, without the tongue, people won't be able to sing or chant well either. The tongue is important to language, music and religious ceremonies. Regards, The Antiquarian.
  4. My goal is to be able to master basic conversational Japanese, since I have been in this country for 3 years and 2 months already. Together with that, I intend to polish my Nihon Shuwa (Japanese Sign Language) abilities while also able to converse in Japanese slang In addition, I also plan to leave Japan and relocate to another country. I like to re-polish my Cantonese, Sinhala and when I have spare time (and spare motivation), I'd like to start memorizing the Sanskrit and Ancient Greek alphabets again. Tis' my goals for 2014. Happy Holidays, Antiquarian.
  5. A main reason would be that when it comes to reading foreign languages, a completely new writing system and unfamiliar pronunciations would be involved. Speaking is essentially mimicking the vocals and tones by using the mouth. Learning by hearing and talking is an archaic and primal talent we all have. Reading and writing on the other hand is learnt usually later than listening or speaking. Reading and writing an alien language is similar to deciphering an entirely new form of script - kind of like solving a puzzle game or secret code. And if the person was reading a foreign language whose alphabet is nowhere related to the reader's mother tongue, then the reader has to tackle new characters and new forms of communications from scratch. Like a baby and learning the language again through baby steps. Regards, The Antiquarian.
  6. Brilliant! I do like the idea of an Ancient Languages section where Latin, Ancient Greek as well as Sanskrit could be learnt, discussed and exchanged. Doing so would enable to understand root words of many today's languages while it will also give us insight to the cultures of forgotten cultures. Likewise, I also suggest to have a forum titled Origins of Languages where people can gather and provide information, research or personal opinions on the origins of Language itself. Furthermore, people can also compare and contrast ancient languages to find common base words as well as discovering the original language. People could even share documentaries or research links relevant to finding the foundations of human languages. For example, by having the Ancient Languages forum, people who know Latin, Ancient Greek or Sanskrit can compare their words and find out about their common ancestor (Proto-Indo-European). The Origin of Languages section can provide theories and research finds from academic sources... and if the section is successful, we can have a solid discussion from linguists who could contribute startling discoveries. Regards, The Antiquarian.
  7. For me it is by associating the words with pictures, objects, events or even with food or certain people. Other ways include mnemonics or by listening and singing to a favourite song, then replacing the lyrics with the words that are currently being learnt. Association, Mnemonics and Singing are also fun for me to better understand words. Cheers, The Antiquarian.
  8. I have many words in mind that could stir up a giggle in me. Words like buffoon, infidel (when said in an exaggeratedly comical tone), doofus as well as other informal or vulgar words. I find vulgar (or even swear) words to be hilarious sometimes. Obviously not always but when combined with comedy or entertainment then do such words can provide laughs. However, to me it matters more on who's speaking the words. For instance if an uninteresting university professor says the word boring then it will not spark any emotion in me. But if Homer Simpson or King Harkinian of the infamous Youtube Poop Series say the exact same word with their unique and comical mannerisms, then it will make me laugh tenfold. Funny words + funny people = Gold comedy. In addition, Slang Words = Comedy treasures that could make one laugh with golden showers. Cheers, The Antiquarian.
  9. As far as accuracy of translations are concerned, a native human speaker always trumps an instant machine translator. The native speaker is the User - the Master - of a Language whilst machinery only match and identify a Language. Furthermore, human native speakers can give extra tips, provide better translations or give sound advice while the capacity of a translating machine is limited based on its programming. Best way to get things translated well? Find a reliable, trustworthy native speaker who most importantly understands your Language... and who can adjust your Language with his/hers/its. Regards, The Antiquarian.
  10. Google Translate is not 100% accurate. Often times the results would be comical translations, especially if one is translating from complex languages. I wouldn't recommend relying on Google Translate in terms of accuracy but it is efficient enough to be able to translate individual words or simple sentences. The site is also helpful when learning new words or translating basic meanings. However, I give kudos to Google Translate for two benefits it has viz. i.) Google Translate provides multiple synonyms for a word and ii.) Google Translate offers Romanizations or Roman alphabet versions of foreign script such as Chinese, Japanese, Greek etc. The site is useful for those who can't read foreign writing as the viewers can read the Romanized forms and same time learn the script via Roman alphabet. Tis' my take on Google Translate. Regards, The Antiquarian.
  11. I got mad love for many English accents. However, probably the number one in the list is Australian English. It's been my lifelong favourite and also my accent of choice when communicating with other fellow English speakers. Australian Accent is fun, vibrant, dynamic and at times crazy. Aussie slang is definitely of entertainment value. Overall, Australian English is witty and sharp but also welcoming and intimate. It makes me feel refreshed when speaking the slangs! Keeps me awake and revived like a bushman's clock, mate!
  12. When it comes to the Greek alphabet, it took me a day to learn everything... and it took me a week to forget almost everything. I started to forget almost all of them once I used the alphabet less in my life. I need to revisit them and re-learn the letters. I still have interest in the Greek alphabet as well as Greek culture and thought. Sincerely, The Antiquarian.
  13. Oh yeah, I do. English is my base language; my native tongue and communications template. However, I lived in many different countries. I would often mix English with their native languages to establish better communications. In China, I spoke Chinglish. In Sri Lanka, Sringlish. In Denmark, Denglish. Back then when I was able to communicate in Spanish, I did enjoy my moments of Spanglish But I've forgotten the language now. Ay caramba! Olvido! Now that I am in Japan, I would speak Jingrish. And Japanese itself has many English loan words that's incorporated to daily use - both casual and formal. Regards, The Antiquarian.
  14. Salve! Music is indeed a powerful and fun way of learning a language. Especially if that language is dead like Latin. It is because of music or songs that I was able to better grasp the Latin language. I have many songs that I like which are sung in Latin, but my favourite musical group that uses the Latin language to their lyrics would be Lesiem. Lesiem is a New Age band based in Germany, and their Latin accents have a Germanic touch into them. Nonetheless, their singing is magnificent and their lyrics are helpful in learning the language. Many of their songs also reflect the lifestyles and ideals of the Ancient Roman Empire. Here are some samples of their songs viz. i.) Pater Patriae ii.) Justitia iii.) Poeta iv.) Liberta v.) Lesiëm Regards, The Antiquarian.
  15. By thinking about your preferences together with advanced English speaking, I recommend the following: i.) Dan Brown (Angels & Demons, The DaVinci Code) ii.) Terry Pratchett's Discworld series (combines Action, Mythology, Comedy, Fantasy and Mystery), iii.) Mystery/Crime-Genre queen Agatha Christie (Death on the Nile, Poirot) iv.) Robert Doherty's Area 51 series (Mystery, Action, Historical, Sci-Fi) or v.) Arthur C. Clarke's Space Odyssey series (Epic, Sci-Fi, Thriller). Happy reading. Regards, The Antiquarian.
  16. Ask yourself what motivates you. What interests you. Seek and search the topics that draws or attracts you. Then based on that, you can make up a list of interests and find books relevant to your choices. If you're not a fan of lengthy words but if you have the desire to still read books, then I recommend getting picture books or photography books. Use Pictures to assist you in Reading and use the short sentences or paragraphs in the book to help you explain the Pictures. I'll conclude this post with a quote I earned from my travels - Pictures speak louder than Words. Pictures are worth a thousand Words. Sincerely, The Antiquarian.
  17. Writing and Reading are the Hardest. Speaking is the easiest for me. Writing and Reading will become a great challenge if you're learning an entirely new alphabet with a completely different writing system and character series. Speaking is easier for if you are skilled at talking or with vocals, it is easy to mimic sounds and practice them. Speaking is also a natural response as a human being. We begin to speak when we begin to play with sounds. The other aspect which makes Writing difficult is that sometimes you have to know strokes or orders when writing characters - especially when it comes to Chinese script. Reading will become difficult if the alien or foreign words become too complicated that you won't be able recognize them since the characters have become fused to create complex sentences - as in the case of Ancient Greek or Sanskrit texts. So in order of Easy to Hard for me, it would be ----> Speaking, Writing, Reading. Regards, Antiquarian.
  18. "Other Languages" sounds crystal-clear and fine to me People can identify the category easily and people would be interested in the languages available that are previously not mentioned. The title may not sound fancy but at times, Simple is Better and Simple is Powerful :grin: I endorse this idea. Regards, The Antiquarian.
  19. For my case, Japanese is more of a challenge as far as speaking is concerned. Writing-wise, I find Chinese much harder. It will vary upon person to person. For me, Chinese is easier to grasp in terms of Speaking compared to Japanese. Reason is because Japanese is comprised of various speaking styles. Styles include honorifics/polite speech as well as separate forms of speech between men and women. Japanese is also filled with indirect nuances, intricate formalities and words with a myriad meanings. Chinese - especially Cantonese - on the other hand is more direct and straightforward. Clear, harsh at times but immediate. Chinese characters (Kanji in Japanese, Hanzi in Mandarin) however are much harder. Even Japanese people themselves have a hard time mastering and memorizing all the Chinese scripts. Chinese people themselves too, especially the younger generation nowadays, have a difficult time writing their own characters fluently thanks to typing, computers and phone buttons (i.e. the gradual fading of writing ability). To summarize it all up, Japanese is harder to learn as a Language while Chinese is harder to learn as a Writing System. Again it will be different between people to people. This is from my take and personal encounters. Lastly, I happen to be a Japanese who doesn't speak Japanese but who speaks Mandarin. Grew up abroad all my life and it was 3 years ago that I came to Japan and experience my supposed homeland. Sincerely, The Antiquarian.
  20. Sometimes I can distinguish between an Australian and British or between a Canadian or American. Each nationality has their own unique style of speaking, and it is these styles which enables me to tell who's who. However, as far as regional accents are concerned, that one gets a bit tricky - especially if I am not a resident in their country who hasn't experienced their lands. For instance, I haven't lived in the United States so I won't be able to distinguish between a Philadelphian accent, a Floridan accent or even an Oregonian accent if there is such one. However, as I have grown up with both Canadian and American peers, I can tell who's who by hearing them. As far as Canadians go, they have their own way pronouncing the words about, aloud or out. Not to mention the trademark "eh?" Between British and Australians, I find British English more mild in tone and tempo while Australian English is more vibrant and upbeat. I also have fun mimicking both British and Australian English (gotta love Aussie slang). When speaking in a British accent, the speech is almost harmonized while when speaking in Australian English, I often get a feeling of excitement. If a country has different peoples and cultures such as China or India, then there is bound to have different accents even if they speak a common tongue. When I lived in China, I spoke Mandarin but I lived in Guangdong where Cantonese is predominant. In that area, I encountered both Northern Chinese migrants and local Cantonese. I spoke Mandarin to them and they spoke Mandarin to me. I can distinguish who's who by the way they talk and certain mannerisms. Sincerely, The Antiquarian.
  21. The next languages I would like to learn (provided that I have time and consistency to do so) would be the following viz. i.) Ancient Greek ii.) Latin iii.) Pali iv.) Sumerian Cuneiform v.) Egyptian Hieroglyphics vi.) German and vii.) Tamil The reasons vary but in a nutshell, it is my passion to delve and research into lost civilizations. One can gain good insight in the cultures of ancient people by learning their languages. As a scholar and philosopher myself, Pali was the language of the Buddha and this language is related to Latin and Ancient Greek. Ancient Greek culture also had influences to ancient Indian civilization. Likewise, the languages of Europe, India and Central Asia arose from a common ancestor: PIE (Proto-Indo-European). By finding common root words and etymologies between Latin, Ancient Greek, Pali and related languages, I can gradually piece them together as if I'm letting myself involved in solving a Proto-Indo-European puzzle. Proto-Indo-European connects many world cultures than I previously thought, and I hear uncanny similar sounds in words from the West to the Far East. Here are examples of similarities I found: English = Eel *Ancient Greek: Egkelys *Latin: Anguilla/Anguis *German: Aal *Sanskrit: Jalavyala/Ahi *Sinhala: Aandha *Mandarin: Mang Yu *Japanese: Anago/Unagi *PIE: Angwhi or English: Crab *Ancient Greek: Karkinos *Latin: Cancer *German: Krabbe *Sanskrit: Karkata *Sinhala: Kakuluwa *Mandarin: Pang Xie *Japanese: Kani *PIE: Gerebh/Gerbh More research is needed on the similarities of words found in diverse cultures. I included Ancient Egyptian Hieroglyphics and Sumerian Cuneiform as they are the world's archaic forms of writing. These forms of script are unique in their own right. Ingenious, mysterious and full of symbolism, it is also of my interest to decipher them and get to know more about humankind's unknown origins. I like to try to learn German because I love the sound of the language. And once again, German has close linguistic similarities with Sanskrit and other Indian languages. I also have German friends so I'd like to practice Deutsche with them at some point Lastly, I like to learn Tamil as this language is currently one of the world's oldest surviving classical/ancient languages. Tamil is also a language with its own system and I was told that this language is very close to the speech of Sumeria and even Sub-Saharan Africa where humankind's origins might have began. Sincerely, The Antiquarian. PS. I also like to learn the clicks and sounds of Bushmen speech
  22. My reason: I'm Japanese but I don't speak the language I have to learn it for as long as I am in my Home That I Never Got To Know: Nippon Many people here do not understand English (or even reluctant to have English conversations) so I have to learn Japanese for survival and to complete my identity as a Japanese. I plan to relocate to another country at some point, but before I leave Japan my goal is to learn Basic Conversational Nihongo at least. That way people abroad won't have to make fun of me for being a Japanese that doesn't know anything about Japan :wacky: I'm not really into Japanese anime (except for Studio Ghibli) nor dramas nor movies (except Kaiju films). However, I get great help from learning Japanese proverbs (the Philosopher inside me enjoys them) while I also grow my Nihongo vocabulary by learning Japan's myths and legends. In addition, I get help from my real-life friend Gimmeaflakeman (Youtuber in Japan who makes Japanese Language videos). Regards ~ Antiquarian.
  23. When it comes to learning new languages, I start with Speaking and Pronunciation First then Reading/Writing the last. That way I can focus more on communicating by Word of Mouth so I can communicate with the People faster. And when it comes to Japanese, I have great challenges in mastering honorifics, grammar and all the other nuances. Also, I noticed that in Japanese, the language isn't very straightforward so I have to deal with many turnarounds too. Regards, The Antiquarian.
  24. I get frustrated when learning Japanese, for the language has many different styles of speaking. In Japanese, you have Formal Speech where you are required to speak with politeness and utmost elegance. Then you have separate speaking styles reserved for men and women only. In Japanese, women and men have their own style of speaking - which makes it even more complex. And the tricky thing is that if your language teacher is a female, and if you end up speaking Japanese like a female would, then locals would find your Japanese curious and mistake you for being feminine In addition, there are many cases where you cannot get direct translations from English to Japanese. Because in Japanese, one word can have a multitude of meanings. Another language which I get frustrated on is Sanskrit. Sanskrit itself is considered to be an ancestor of formal grammar - and grammar can get really, really complicated. To make situations harder, Sanskrit is an extinct language not spoken by many today. Vice versa, Japanese people get frustrated when learning English. They would complain that English pronunciations (especially consonants) are hard and they feel pressured when talking fast in English Lastly, I always get frustrated when learning another language's alphabet. Bah. Regards, The Antiquarian.
  25. If we simplify the definition of "Language" as a form of communication, then Telepathy can be considered a language. Let's think about this matter in both realms of Fiction and Reality. Now in Fiction, an alien race, supernatural creature or a superhuman being may not have the ability to move their mouths, but they can communicate to others with their mind. We can hear their voices and we can understand what they're trying to tell us - but they do not move their lips nor do they use speech from the voice. Or some characters do move and talk from their lips, but they're located in distant far away lands that they would be unable speak to anyone nearby. Hence they use Telepathy as a means to communicate to anyone they choose over vast distances. We hear their voices not through their mouth... but through Thought. Examples of such characters include Death from "Discworld", Sapphira from "Eragon", The Sorceress from "He-Man & The Masters of the Universe" and Professor X from "X-Men". To the works of fiction, Telepathy can be seen as a form of alternate (or even advanced) language. In addition, according to some legends from Indian villages, it is stated that Telepathy was the original language of Humankind, until humans became more separate from Nature, began making civilizations and started new codes and speeches to spread cultural advancement. Now in Reality, Telepathy isn't as prominent in our lifestyle. However, there are accounts of people with personal experiences involving this unseen phenomenon. For those people, telepathy is their choice of language - their choice of communications. There's also a theory called "animal magnetism" involving the harnessing and utilization of Thoughts naturally - but it has yet to receive full support from the scientific community. However, as I grew up in the wilderness before, I observed animals that communicated with each other without making any sound. In the wilderness of South Asia, as I meditated there during my training with Buddhist monks, I saw some dogs that identify with each other without using any barks, grunts or gerowls. Scent may have involved, but I've known dogs that communicated and identified one another in long distances as if they're contacting through thought. I also noticed of crows flying away before kids meters and meters away would try to approach them. Perhaps the animals have a hidden advantage where they that can sense our thoughts and emotions. When I was feeling sad once, I remember my dog approaching to me and comforting me... and I didn't even call my dog's name. Just by thought, my dog arrived. Had a similar encounter with a monitor lizard too. Monitor lizard was at my garden, but it got chased away. In my mind I wanted to see the lizard again, and next day... the lizard was in the middle of the garage... only to be chased away again I have no conclusions regarding the absolute nature of Telepathy. More insight is needed... but for me, Telepathy can be considered a variation of Language. Sincerely ~ Antiquarian.
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