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I'm a Portuguese native speaker and I'm learning languages mostly for professional purposes (I intend to be a diplomat). I've been studying English, French and Spanish for quite some time now and I plan to keep studying them for the next 2 years until I take the civil service examination (as they are the required languages). But as I have some free time (and a certain ability to easily learn multiple languages at time) I thought I could start learning other languages I like and want to know (and then, not only for professional purposes), namely German, Dutch and Italian. I had already started studying German and Italian some years ago, but I gave up them when I entered college as in the beggining I hadn't much free time, and my priorities were English and French. I would like to know, based on the background (native languge, languages I already know, and the difficult of each specific language in question) in which order I should take these languages. I thought it would be better to start with Italian, as I have some familiarity with Romance languages, which should be easy and could help me consolidate my Latin-based vocabulary (which, though, may not be very or particularly useful when I pick Dutch and German...), and then pick Dutch (which is claimed to be easy), and only then German. But I'm not sure if that would be the most efficient sequence... (maybe Dutch first?)

Any thoughts?

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Hi there

Welcome to Linguaholic!

Italian, Dutch, German sounds like a great choice to me. Afer studying Dutch, it will be

mch easier for you to master German. German is a pretty difficult language. The Grammar is a lot of hard work.

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  • 1 month later...

I would second that, from the stand point of easing yourself into the process. I think if I were in your position, I'd want to go in order of ease of learning, that's why I voted for Italian, Dutch and lastly German. I have learnt Italian in the past, and it's a gorgeous but easy language to learn, in my opinion. I'm not familiar with Dutch and German, but from my discussions with friends, German is pretty hard. If you started with Dutch, which is considered the easier language, I feel like it could sort of give you a good foundation to learn German as I understand that there are some similarities between the two. This will probably boost your confidence and spur you on :) All the best!

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Hi there!  I agree with linguaholic, it'd be better to study dutch first, German will become even easier.  The only hard thing about dutch is the word order, but the fact it doesn't have so many articles is really good (unlike German), so if i were you I'd definitely go for that.  You can leave Italian at the end, since Dutch and German are the ones that might take some more effort at first.

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