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The One Ring Forums: Off Topic: The Pollantir:
How many languages do you speak?
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Poll: How many languages do you speak?
Just my native language
View Results (42 votes)

Lurker in the Mirk

May 7 2014, 3:10pm

Post #26 of 48 (304 views)
Dialects? [In reply to] Can't Post

I checked 2 since I can speak 2 proper languages with any competence: English (which is my first language and the language of instruction in school), Mandarin (my mother tongue) and a very bit of Japanese (does atrophy so quickly from lack of use) so about 2.1? Smile

I can also manage 2 dialects (Cantonese and Hokkien)


May 7 2014, 10:32pm

Post #27 of 48 (300 views)
"I have also studied Italian and German and can ask simple questions in both." [In reply to] Can't Post

But can you understand the answers?....lol


May 8 2014, 12:00am

Post #28 of 48 (287 views)
That's the hardest part! [In reply to] Can't Post

When I've was in France, there were many situations in which I needed to ask a question and knew how to do it in French, but I also knew that to do so would unleash a torrent of answers that would be way beyond me!

Tol Eressea

May 8 2014, 12:13am

Post #29 of 48 (279 views)
I find Middle English easier to read [In reply to] Can't Post

if I read it fast. When I just scan through the lines, I get the idea of the passage, but when I slow down, I get bogged down on all the individual words with the weird spelling.


May 8 2014, 12:58am

Post #30 of 48 (288 views)
Well… [In reply to] Can't Post

For the sake of not sounding negative I say 172 minus 169

Yes, sometimes more is less Wink


May 8 2014, 1:17pm

Post #31 of 48 (282 views)
I'll go with 3. [In reply to] Can't Post

English and Spanish.

Wifey and I and some friends sometimes converse in Latin just for fun.

Used to be pretty good in French, German, and Hebrew but it's been years.

Also a bit in Vietnamese and Siamese but that was way back in the 70s.

In high school belonged to a Tolkien club where we only spoke Sindarin during the socializing part of the meetings.

I also remember an Esperanto club but not much.

Sometime me and others try Koine Greek in Bible studies.

So 3.


May 8 2014, 3:02pm

Post #32 of 48 (277 views)
the interesting thing is [In reply to] Can't Post

perhaps because so much of English comes from German, I find that I can often grasp what people say in German even when I can't do a word-by-word translation. I once held a lengthy conversation with a German woman in which I spoke English, she spoke German, and we understood each other just fine.

Italian, you rely on the gestures.


May 8 2014, 7:19pm

Post #33 of 48 (266 views)
Kids get on fine in any language! [In reply to] Can't Post

Back when my kids were small, we lived in Berkeley, CA. We had some good friends who were visiting professors from Germany, and had a daughter about my daughter's age (3). They played together regularly, and although neither spoke the other's language, they chattered away and got along fine.

Elanor of Rohan

May 8 2014, 7:28pm

Post #34 of 48 (256 views)
Well, it depends [In reply to] Can't Post

if you want to survive...

But Italian grammar is so difficult to master, even for native speakers..


May 8 2014, 11:12pm

Post #35 of 48 (265 views)
Well, a great many Americans have difficulty with grammar in English!// [In reply to] Can't Post



May 10 2014, 3:27pm

Post #36 of 48 (243 views)
I found studying French helped me understand English grammar much better [In reply to] Can't Post

especially verb tenses. I don't remember ever being taken through verb tenses in English beyond past, present, future. Certainly no one ever explained the future subjunctive to me until I encountered it in French class!

Grey Havens

May 11 2014, 1:46am

Post #37 of 48 (221 views)
Five [In reply to] Can't Post

I was born and educated in the US so of course I speak English. I am also fluent in Lithuanian, the language of my immigrant family. I studied French in elementary and high school for 6 years, and know it well enough to read Dumas in the original, and converse in it. I was nearly as fluent in German many years ago after spending 5 weeks living with a German family. I'd still be able to express my thoughts (albeit with execrable grammar, nowadays...) I also know enough Russian to get by in a conversation, again with lousy grammar (my ex was a Russian-speaking immigrant to the US).


May 11 2014, 2:00am

Post #38 of 48 (223 views)
Because of the specified fluency level [In reply to] Can't Post

I picked 2. I can converse on a basic level in Spanish (albeit with some grammar issues) and understand answers so long as they aren't at break-neck speed. There are some native Spanish speakers at the schools where I work and I can understand the kiddos well. The high school kids are understandable to me so long as they are brief and not too fast. For certain individuals who tend to be minimalistic in speech or slow / relaxed, I usually get what they are saying. For other individuals who vary speed with emotional emphasis, my understanding phases in and out with the speed that they are talking. I have been cursed on airplanes by Spanish folks and known fully what they were saying but I didn't react for other reasons.

I do sometimes confuse Spanish and Chinese (Mandarin) from time to time. My Chinese is really too basic to say I could hold a real conversation. I can shop, order food, introduce myself, say a few things I like, make a few comments, and ask a few key questions.

I do know a little bit of Menominee (Native American) but it is mostly just introductions, greetings, and expressions. Even those are growing a bit rusty to be honest (with disuse).


May 12 2014, 4:47pm

Post #39 of 48 (214 views)
yes, if they'd asked "what languages can you SING in" [In reply to] Can't Post

the list is much longer.

I've sung in English, Latin, Italian, German, French (the big five for classical singers) but also Russian, Spanish, Portuguese, Czech, Navajo, Salish, a native Brazilian language, Norwegian, Japanese, Hebrew, Zulu, Xhosa, Sesotho, and Hindi, as best as I can recall. I'm probably forgetting some. I learned how to do the clicks for the African languages.

Sometimes the way you sing a language isn't the same as how it's pronounced while speaking it, though.


May 12 2014, 5:13pm

Post #40 of 48 (221 views)
Yeah [In reply to] Can't Post

In Reply To
I learned how to do the clicks for the African languages.

In Reply To

I remember Miriam Makeba and the song "Pata Pata". People would ask her how she made that "noise" and she'd say "It isn't a 'noise', it's my language!"


For my part, it's kinda nice listening to a singer sing in a language I don't understand because I can more readily appreciate the voice as a pure instrument.

(Like how, to me, French poetry and Italian opera both sound better than they actually are.)

(This post was edited by Darkstone on May 12 2014, 5:17pm)


May 14 2014, 4:43pm

Post #41 of 48 (202 views)
I can speak two languages [In reply to] Can't Post

I am a French native speaker and a few years ago I had a mind to learn English. I thought it would be very useful to watch movies in the original format (and not dubbed) and also to no longer having to wait for French traduction of books.

I couldn't afford to attend classes but my motivation was great and as a self-taught person I decided to watch TV in English only, I purchased quite a few books in English and got the newspapers in this language as well every Saturday morning. It was no less than an immersion, but long and hard with the constant help of a dictionnary. Slowly but surely I was absorbing words, sentences, patterns.

4 years later here I am, able to writte this message and very proud of this accomplishment. English as a language opened doors to me, I now have acces to lots of information online, I read now mostly in English as well as watching TV, what was once an habbit to learn is now every day life and part of me.

That's my little tale, and it proves that motivation can be rewarded. If you badly want something, you'll find ways to get it.

(This post was edited by sam90 on May 14 2014, 4:49pm)

Grey Havens

May 14 2014, 6:44pm

Post #42 of 48 (181 views)
Amazing! [In reply to] Can't Post

Kudos to you. I can't imagine just trying to learn a language from books and TV, and you've clearly done a great job. (Then again, I find it easiest to learn to speak rather than read/write, a new language...)


May 14 2014, 6:53pm

Post #43 of 48 (172 views)
What an accomplishment [In reply to] Can't Post

You should be very proud.


May 14 2014, 7:36pm

Post #44 of 48 (189 views)
My native English, but... [In reply to] Can't Post

Spanish was my major in high school and college. I was pretty fluent in Spanish back then, but that was many, many years ago. Only comparatively recently have there been enough Spanish-speaking opportunities here in Indianapolis, and I didn't seek out opportunities to immerse myself in the language, so my ability is pretty much gone, although I was very good when I was at University, and I actually had a native speaker in one of my Spanish literature classes ask me where I was from, thinking I was a native Spanish speaker. I expect I could still make myself understood in the language, but I've forgotten most of it.
I also took two years of college level French, and was good enough at one point to read The Little Prince in French without the English translation next to me.Wink


May 25 2014, 3:58am

Post #45 of 48 (193 views)
Kiire Black Fox hüppas üle laisa koera. // [In reply to] Can't Post



May 25 2014, 7:59am

Post #46 of 48 (165 views)
Nice! [In reply to] Can't Post

You never told me you spoke such excellent Estonian! Impressive, Bracegirdle! Feel free to call me Must Rebane instead of BlackFox from now on. Wink

(This post was edited by BlackFox on May 25 2014, 8:06am)


May 25 2014, 3:11pm

Post #47 of 48 (148 views)
Ok Must Rebane [In reply to] Can't Post

It's funny the translator I cheated with didn't translate "Black Fox". But now I find Must Rebane with another translator. Ah well.
I shall now work on another riddle for the Suurepärane Must Rebane. Crazy


May 25 2014, 3:30pm

Post #48 of 48 (170 views)
Another riddle, you say? [In reply to] Can't Post

Can't wait! Smile

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