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Language discussion thread

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Language discussion thread

23 Apr 2011 17:19

Descender wrote:Not a huge feat considering Dutch is basically simplified German.


I don't speak German and had it at school for 3 years.

African is simplified Dutch. German has many differences with Dutch.
Ryo Hazuki wrote:horrible. boonen just the same guy as years before and this course is too hard for him. that's why he rode like a coward there were at least 3 guys stronger than boonen today and none of them won: sagan, ballan, pozzato


The Hitch wrote:Goss will woop boonens candy a[color="Black"]ss[/color] in a sprint he cares about, any day of the week
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23 Apr 2011 17:21

El Pistolero wrote:I don't speak German and had it at school for 3 years.

African is simplified Dutch. German has many differences with Dutch.


Case in point. You couldn't learn German in 3 years but Martens learned it in two, because Dutch is much easier than German.

You take away the superficial, mainly phonetic differences and Dutch and German are basically the same.
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23 Apr 2011 17:21

Descender wrote:Case in point. You couldn't learn German in 3 years but Martens learned it in two, because Dutch is much easier than German.


Yet Dutch is by many considered one of the hardest languages to learn. Mind you, I never tried to really learn German as it's a useless language for me.
Ryo Hazuki wrote:horrible. boonen just the same guy as years before and this course is too hard for him. that's why he rode like a coward there were at least 3 guys stronger than boonen today and none of them won: sagan, ballan, pozzato


The Hitch wrote:Goss will woop boonens candy a[color="Black"]ss[/color] in a sprint he cares about, any day of the week
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23 Apr 2011 17:23

El Pistolero wrote:Yet Dutch is by many considered one of the hardest languages to learn. Mind you, I never tried to really learn German as it's a useless language for me.


To whom?

To an Italian of course it will be hard, it's very different. But German would be much harder to him. Anyone who has a hard time learning Dutch will have a much harder time learning German.

But yes, German is not very useful.
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23 Apr 2011 17:24

Stop arguing over such a stupid thing. Difficulty is entirely subjective (and Pistolero, "harder" doesn't mean "better").
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23 Apr 2011 17:30

hrotha wrote:Stop arguing over such a stupid thing. Difficulty is entirely subjective (and Pistolero, "harder" doesn't mean "better").


No, but Dutch is not simplified German. The languages differ too much for that.
Ryo Hazuki wrote:horrible. boonen just the same guy as years before and this course is too hard for him. that's why he rode like a coward there were at least 3 guys stronger than boonen today and none of them won: sagan, ballan, pozzato


The Hitch wrote:Goss will woop boonens candy a[color="Black"]ss[/color] in a sprint he cares about, any day of the week
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23 Apr 2011 17:33

El Pistolero wrote:No, but Dutch is not simplified German. The languages differ too much for that.


Yeah, it's horribly mangled to the point of almost no recognition German. :p

But i dunno, maybe it's easy to learn.
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23 Apr 2011 17:50

German and Dutch are very different, but they are also closely related languages, so if you were a German with a bit of a knack for languages (especially if you're from the North or West of the country) it would be the easiest language to pick up.

The whole thing on how "difficult" a language is to learn is relative to what you normally speak. For a German-speaker Dutch is much easier to learn than, say, Swahili.

Anyway, the whole European German zone is a continuum, from Low German through to Austro-Bavarian. In former times, many of the dialects that make up modern Dutch were part of that. But they split off and standardised a long time ago, long before German standardised in fact. So yes, a Dutch farmer and a German farmer living on the boundaries may find their dialects mutually intelligible, but if they recourse to their standard languages they won't understand each other.

Dutch isn't a simplified anything. It is a levelling and development of a group of Germanic tongues in the Lowlands. Some of the Germanic tongues in the Lowlands that were involved in the creation of a Dutch standard language are very similar to some of the Germanic tongues in present day Germany - but they are part of the organisation of two very different languages.

Paul Martens is from Rostock. So though he would likely speak or at least have some knowledge of a Low German dialect, this is north-east German, so likely to be somewhat different to those dialects closest to Dutch.

(In addition, some of the dialects of Dutch in the Maastricht area have undergone the Second Germanic Sound Shift, meaning they have a few characteristics of German (which standardised based on dialects south of the shift).
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23 Apr 2011 18:14

Libertine Seguros wrote:German and Dutch are very different, but they are also closely related languages, so if you were a German with a bit of a knack for languages (especially if you're from the North or West of the country) it would be the easiest language to pick up.

The whole thing on how "difficult" a language is to learn is relative to what you normally speak. For a German-speaker Dutch is much easier to learn than, say, Swahili.

Anyway, the whole European German zone is a continuum, from Low German through to Austro-Bavarian. In former times, many of the dialects that make up modern Dutch were part of that. But they split off and standardised a long time ago, long before German standardised in fact. So yes, a Dutch farmer and a German farmer living on the boundaries may find their dialects mutually intelligible, but if they recourse to their standard languages they won't understand each other.

Dutch isn't a simplified anything. It is a levelling and development of a group of Germanic tongues in the Lowlands. Some of the Germanic tongues in the Lowlands that were involved in the creation of a Dutch standard language are very similar to some of the Germanic tongues in present day Germany - but they are part of the organisation of two very different languages.

Paul Martens is from Rostock. So though he would likely speak or at least have some knowledge of a Low German dialect, this is north-east German, so likely to be somewhat different to those dialects closest to Dutch.

(In addition, some of the dialects of Dutch in the Maastricht area have undergone the Second Germanic Sound Shift, meaning they have a few characteristics of German (which standardised based on dialects south of the shift).


And here it is again, the truth ruining a nice story... :D

You could also add that the historical dialects of German near the Dutch border (near extinction) and Dutch on the other side are similar actually due to a Sprachbund rather than a pure dialect continuum, apparently.

And since we're at it, the reason for Dutch being "simpler" is basically the fact that it was standarised from a Low German variety, which dropped the cases, or most of them, at an earlier stage than the Middle and Upper German varieties on which Standard German is mostly based.

Dutch and German are about as similar to each other as Spanish and Portuguese. That is, a lot.
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23 Apr 2011 18:56

I have moved a few of the posts from the lbl thread into here, discussions like these seem to come up every time there is a race in holland or belgium, so now there is a home for it.
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23 Apr 2011 19:36

Descender wrote:But yes, German is not very useful.


Unless, of course, you happen to live in Germany.

As to Dutch, I have always said that with a good knowledge of German and English, you can understand a great deal of written Dutch. I can also understand a good amount of spoken Dutch, but would myself never attempt to speak it.

We live about 10 minutes from the border to the Netherlands, so that may make a difference.

Susan
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23 Apr 2011 20:44

Susan Westemeyer wrote:Unless, of course, you happen to live in Germany.

As to Dutch, I have always said that with a good knowledge of German and English, you can understand a great deal of written Dutch. I can also understand a good amount of spoken Dutch, but would myself never attempt to speak it.

We live about 10 minutes from the border to the Netherlands, so that may make a difference.

Susan
Where is that?

I live 10 minutes from the German border (Roermond)
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23 Apr 2011 20:52

Learn Sicilian.
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23 Apr 2011 21:19

rhubroma wrote:Learn Sicilian.

I'd recommend Galego.
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23 Apr 2011 21:20

Susan Westemeyer wrote:Unless, of course, you happen to live in Germany.

As to Dutch, I have always said that with a good knowledge of German and English, you can understand a great deal of written Dutch. I can also understand a good amount of spoken Dutch, but would myself never attempt to speak it.

We live about 10 minutes from the border to the Netherlands, so that may make a difference.

Susan


Which I do (and close to the Dutch border too). And certainly, that goes without saying...
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23 Apr 2011 21:55

Descender wrote:Which I do (and close to the Dutch border too). And certainly, that goes without saying...

Having at least a good passive knowledge of German is pretty important in the fields of linguistics and classics.
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23 Apr 2011 23:28

Luxembourgish is in many ways a simplified, or else slightly modified version of German. In many aspects it doesn't have the characteristics of a language and it has a small vocabulary. Often we have to borrow the same exact word from German (or French) to make up for the fact that it doesn't exist in Luxembourgish. Or else we take the word and slightly modifiy it by putting in a diphtongue. In the Moselle region, many Germans speak "Platt", which resembles Luxembourgish a lot. I could have a conversation with a German speaking Platt, and we would have no problem understanding one another despite speaking in different dialects.

I have no problem understanding written dutch when it comes to reading a menu or whatever it says on the can of peas. It would never come to my mind to read Dutch literature though as I would be hopelessly lost.

When it comes to spoken Dutch I understand isolated phrases or words but that's all.

As for German being a "useless" language - not everything has to be useful. I am very glad to speak German because there is so much amazing German literature, movies, music, articles ... might not be useful but it's amazing how much there is to discover!
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23 Apr 2011 23:39

Some linguists say Dutch is a easy language to learn, some people say it isnt, some say it is. Example: Best friend of mine migrated from Russia 9 years ago, when he was 11. Three years later he speaks fluently Dutch, except for demonstrative pronouns, because they dont have those in the Russian language.

Personally I don't find German a hard to learn language, it is looking somewhat like Dutch but to know some words you just have to learn vocabulary. Understanding the grammatical rules in German helps you out alot, Im not having troubles with them and I kinda understand how German works, thus its fun for me to learn. And willingness to learn helps you out alot.
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23 Apr 2011 23:51

Nice parody by German comedian Matze Knop of Louis van Gaal:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3qfZ4fLUaFI
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24 Apr 2011 00:17

Stupid discussion. But I do know ancient Dutch, to me, sounds a lot more like ancient English than German...
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