How Many Languages Do You Know?

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How many languages do you know? In how many languages you can speak and write? I can barely speak and write in 8 different languages. English is one of them. Unfortunately I am weakest in English among the 8 languages. However I am satisfied as I know no one speak 100% faultlessly in foreign languages.
  • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
    English only. But it would be interesting to know how speaking 8 languages affect your thought process. Do you think in the language you are speaking?

    Is it simply like you know 8 times as many words, and you just know what they all mean?

    Does it improve your understanding when listening?
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    • Profile picture of the author Horny Devil
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      Impressive, but I bet you can't speak Double Dutch, like my wife can. Or bullshit like the mother-in-law.
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    • Profile picture of the author Hossain
      Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

      English only. But it would be interesting to know how speaking 8 languages affect your thought process. Do you think in the language you are speaking?
      You wouldn't believe why I started learning languages. If you heard about Sir. Henry Rider Haggard then you may know he wrote numerous adventure novels based on Africa and Latin America specially. Within his books he depicts characters who can speak in English, Arabic, tribal African, Latin American and sometimes within some mythic languages. I am inspired a lot by reading Rider's books. I started with Arabic along with English (which was medium of study for my University course). Arabic influenced me lot to learn rest 5 other languages. I never calculate benefits I am going to get by learning foreign languages rather feeling interest to know a new one. Its one kind of hobby I can say.

      Even though it's hobby for me but still I find some benefits I get in my everyday life. Learning more than one language made me more humanist than before. Now I know even though our culture, religion, race, color, dress, foods even line of thinking are different but we all are from same source. Our basic feelings are same. A girl is naturally more emotional than a boy even if she an American or European or Arabian or Indian or Chinese no matter from where she is. An Indian girl is basically same by mentality as an American girl. To be honest nothing to difference between them except dress, color, race, culture etc. Now I hate war more than before. Now I respect outlandish culture more than before. Another benefit is now I can read books in more than one language. Which helped me a lot to discover new worlds of literature. Even though feelings of love is almost same but a Chinese poet depicts love in his own way and a Persian poet in his own way. Both of they will use parallelisms but one may compare his beloved with peahen and another will compare his beloved with Jasmin flower. Another benefit is now I have some friends in China, India, Pakistan, Iran, Yemen, Russia (I am still learning it), Australia, America, Tunisia, Brazil etc. And I am planning to visit those countries as my friends want to meet me and also come to my country too.


      Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

      Is it simply like you know 8 times as many words, and you just know what they all mean?

      Does it improve your understanding when listening?
      My age is 31, started learning when I was 25. So still learning. If I were a doctor I would have learned more quickly than now. Unfortunately I am an engineer so I am lazy to learn and memorize words. lol

      Of course. If you learn more than 2 languages you will feel little bit sharper than now. In English we usually use verb after subject like "I eat rice" but in Bengali we say "I rice eat". Subject then object and then verb. If you know both of these languages possibility is higher your understanding skill will grow up. Now if a Chinese say "I scorpion bite but eat they test poison" you will easily understand speaker wants to say, Even though scorpions are poisonous but still we eat theme and these are delicious! :p
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan Riffle
    Your English seems fine to me. Further, I highly doubt there's anyone who speaks flawlessly in their native language.
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    • Profile picture of the author Hossain
      Originally Posted by Dan Riffle View Post

      Your English seems fine to me. Further, I highly doubt there's anyone who speaks flawlessly in their native language.
      I agree with you. (Y)
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  • Profile picture of the author bravo75
    I speak 3. English, German and Dutch.
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    • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
      Eight's impressive. I can just about manage three, including a rusty French and even rustier German, although like most Brits I've completely mastered the art of speaking English slowly and loudly in a whole variety of foreign accents.

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  • Profile picture of the author thunderbird
    I struggle just to speak English (my first language) like normal people do, lol. But I can speak three languages -- English, Spanish, Mandarin, and have unintentionally fooled people on the phone into thinking I'm native.

    I'm pretty sure I could learn a conversational level of any language within three months, though I'm not actually good at languages. Most people are smart enough, but don't apply their intelligence. Someone needs to be somehow psychologically driven to learn something, and the vehicle being driven (aka IQ) is actually of secondary importance. Rick Hansen traveled across China on a wheelchair.
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    • Profile picture of the author bravo75
      Originally Posted by thunderbird View Post

      Rick Hansen traveled across China on a wheelchair.
      ... and Ringo Starr became a multi millionaire.
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    • Profile picture of the author Hossain
      Originally Posted by thunderbird View Post

      I struggle just to speak English (my first language) like normal people do, lol. But I can speak three languages -- English, Spanish, Mandarin, and have unintentionally fooled people on the phone into thinking I'm native.

      I'm pretty sure I could learn a conversational level of any language within three months, though I'm not actually good at languages.

      You will struggle a lot and withdraw your words once you will start learning Arabic or Hindi. The main reason is you will find sentence structures and words are completely different than English. You know Mandarin so you might learn Japanese, Malay etc. language quickly. But I heavily doubt you can do so for middle eastern languages too. However Chinese seems difficult one to me. You did a great job. (Y) (Y)
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      • Profile picture of the author thunderbird
        Originally Posted by Hossain View Post

        You will struggle a lot and withdraw your words once you will start learning Arabic or Hindi. The main reason is you will find sentence structures and words are completely different than English. You know Mandarin so you might learn Japanese, Malay etc. language quickly. But I heavily doubt you can do so for middle eastern languages too. However Chinese seems difficult one to me. You did a great job. (Y) (Y)
        I just might take you up on the challenge.

        Spoken Mandarin actually has no resemblance whatsoever the Japanese. English speakers usually pronounce spoken Mandarin better than Japanese people do (assuming they're all learning the language). I'll never forget a train trip to Shanghai when Japanese tourists were using me as an interpreter (English>Mandarin) in a conversation with a Chinese man and how he kept on looking at them, then me, as if he couldn't believe his eyes and we were playing some kind of trick. It'd be like if a dog started talking to you -- you'd be looking for a hidden camera and speaker.

        Mandarin, Japanese, Malay are completely different language branches as well, one not resembling the other.

        Here a weird language factoid:
        -- The language of the Ainu minority in Japan resembles Basque so much that it could not be a coincidence.
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        • Profile picture of the author Hossain
          Originally Posted by thunderbird View Post

          I just might take you up on the challenge.

          Spoken Mandarin actually has no resemblance whatsoever the Japanese. English speakers usually pronounce spoken Mandarin better than Japanese people do (assuming they're all learning the language). I'll never forget a train trip to Shanghai when Japanese tourists were using me as an interpreter (English>Mandarin) in a conversation with a Chinese man and how he kept on looking at them, then me, as if he couldn't believe his eyes and we were playing some kind of trick. It'd be like if a dog started talking to you -- you'd be looking for a hidden camera and speaker.

          Mandarin, Japanese, Malay are completely different language branches as well, one not resembling the other.

          Here a weird language factoid:
          -- The language of the Ainu minority in Japan resembles Basque so much that it could not be a coincidence.
          Hm. Chinese seems always difficult one to me as I mess with pronunciation and meaning of , , mǎ and . Always. And writing in Chinese seems rocket science to me!
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          • Profile picture of the author thunderbird
            Originally Posted by Hossain View Post

            Hm. Chinese seems always difficult one to me as I mess with pronunciation and meaning of , , mǎ and . Always. And writing in Chinese seems rocket science to me!
            I actually knew a rocket scientist (literally) who was learning Mandarin. He was really struggling with it. It was hilarious. I'd tease him about it. "C'mon man, you're a rocket scientist, PhD in physics? Ok, I know, this isn't rocket science."
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            • Profile picture of the author Hossain
              Originally Posted by thunderbird View Post

              I actually knew a rocket scientist (literally) who was learning Mandarin. He was really struggling with it. It was hilarious. I'd tease him about it. "C'mon man, you're a rocket scientist, PhD in physics? Ok, I know, this isn't rocket science."
              In my University there was a 85 years old professor who was lifelong member of IEEE and wrote numerous books on VLSI design. He used to teach us Introductory Circuit Analysis from Robert L. Boylestad. My professor used to say at the end of classes "I respect fashion designers, because they can design bra! Really difficult job. Specially free size bras"

              Sorry to ladies. I couldn't restrict myself from sharing this funny statement from an old wise fox.
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  • Profile picture of the author mojojuju
    I know of many languages.
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    • Profile picture of the author thunderbird
      Originally Posted by mojojuju View Post

      I know of many languages.
      Unquestionably, the language that has the most brilliant grammatical structure, is most descriptive, of unsurpassed depth and superiority in every way, is Mojojujunese.
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  • Profile picture of the author KimW
    I speak one. I just started taking Madarin CHinese lessons.
    I am up to about 15 words and 3 or 4 simple sentences.

    As far as Dan's comment: " I highly doubt there's anyone who speaks flawlessly in their native language." , I have to say,this is probably the most flawless sentence I have ever seen.
    "All your base are belong to us. "
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  • Profile picture of the author Windzal
    Lithuanian and English. Also, I know some basic sentences in French.
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    • Profile picture of the author Hossain
      Originally Posted by bravo75 View Post

      I speak 3. English, German and Dutch.
      Originally Posted by Frank Donovan View Post

      I can just about manage three, including a rusty French and even rustier German, although like most Brits I've completely mastered the art of speaking English slowly and loudly in a whole variety of foreign accents.

      Originally Posted by thunderbird View Post

      But I can speak three languages -- English, Spanish, Mandarin, and have unintentionally fooled people on the phone into thinking I'm native.
      Originally Posted by mojojuju View Post

      I know of many languages.
      Originally Posted by KimW View Post

      I speak one. I just started taking Madarin CHinese lessons.
      I am up to about 15 words and 3 or 4 simple sentences.
      Originally Posted by Windzal View Post

      Lithuanian and English. Also, I know some basic sentences in French.
      You who have interest on foreign languages if you are not planning to learn Arabic then missing a big one. In my opinion Arabic is the richest language among all my known languages. Extremely polished language too. If you read a 200 years old English novel or a just 100 year old Hindi novel you will see difference between new and ancient language. You sometime will not be able to understand even read a sentence comfortably. But Arabic is a super one. You will be able to read and understand an 1000 year old Arabic novel easily as there are very little changes were needed for this language.
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      • Profile picture of the author KPI
        Three: English, French and Arabic

        Originally Posted by Hossain View Post

        You will be able to read and understand an 1000 year old Arabic novel easily as there are very little changes were needed for this language.
        I don't see this as a positive feature of the Arabic Language. It shows that it hasn't really evolved and I think it needs a bit of a shake up to join the modern times

        But I do agree that it is a language worth learning.
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        • Profile picture of the author seasoned
          Originally Posted by KPI View Post

          Three: English, French and Arabic



          I don't see this as a positive feature of the Arabic Language. It shows that it hasn't really evolved and I think it needs a bit of a shake up to join the modern times

          But I do agree that it is a language worth learning.
          Just because a person TODAY can read a 1000 year old document does NOT mean that a person THEN could read a document NOW.

          Steve
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          • Profile picture of the author KPI
            Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

            Just because a person TODAY can read a 1000 year old document does NOT mean that a person THEN could read a document NOW.

            Steve
            Actually in Arabic, they kind of can I still like it a lot though and its literature is really rich and amazing

            Well, I forget which one is "standard", but arabic has like one or more major dialects per country. So Jordan and egypt speak different ones. Are you saying the written language is the same?
            It's true. Dialects differ within one country and from one Arab country to the other, to the extent that in extreme cases, it might be difficult for a citizen of one country to understand what someone from another country is saying. However, the written language and grammar are almost the same (some minor differences between countries). It is called classical Arabic and this is what is taught in school and what everyone understands. Classical Arabic is never used in daily conversations though.
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            • Profile picture of the author seasoned
              Originally Posted by KPI View Post

              Actually in Arabic, they kind of can I still like it a lot though and its literature is really rich and amazing
              Well, the same COULD be said of German. A TV is called a far see. So it creates the idea of something that allows you to see something from far off. A telephone is called a far speaker. A FAX is called a far copier. Even in FRENCH a FAX is called a face same.

              Still, it loses something in the translation. Even the term DISK DRIVE has meaning but really doesn't. They may have an understanding. You may show the basic mechanism to them, and it is "YEP, that IS a disk drive!"! It is driving the disk! *****SO WHAT*****!?

              Of course, I am simply talking about technology. It is easy to show, and has meaning. But there is slang, and culture that ALSO affect meaning.

              HECK, I remember when first heard about RAM(in the 70s). I'm thinking but ROM is random access ALSO!?!?!?!? And static and dynamic? HEY, if you don't look at the electronic side, how about QUASIstatic!? I'm actually surprised quasi-static didn't catch on!

              Steve
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            • Profile picture of the author Hossain
              Originally Posted by KPI View Post

              Actually in Arabic, they kind of can I still like it a lot though and its literature is really rich and amazing



              It's true. Dialects differ within one country and from one Arab country to the other, to the extent that in extreme cases, it might be difficult for a citizen of one country to understand what someone from another country is saying. However, the written language and grammar are almost the same (some minor differences between countries). It is called classical Arabic and this is what is taught in school and what everyone understands. Classical Arabic is never used in daily conversations though.
              Here I will compare Arabic with English. Yes Arabic has dialects as English. But the difference is very little like American English and British English. Standard Arabic can be used in all different countries like Egypt, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Libya etc. with some minor changes though.
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        • Profile picture of the author Hossain
          Originally Posted by KPI View Post

          Three: English, French and Arabic



          I don't see this as a positive feature of the Arabic Language. It shows that it hasn't really evolved and I think it needs a bit of a shake up to join the modern times

          But I do agree that it is a language worth learning.

          I said in my opinion.

          Actually no change is not indicating Arabic is not up to date language. It indicates how polished and rich the language is. Also as the language is ancient one and lots of books can be found specially translated Greek, Roman and Persian books so Arabic is used as the language to keep alive the old knowledge till now.
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      • Profile picture of the author seasoned
        Originally Posted by Hossain View Post

        You who have interest on foreign languages if you are not planning to learn Arabic then missing a big one. In my opinion Arabic is the richest language among all my known languages. Extremely polished language too. If you read a 200 years old English novel or a just 100 year old Hindi novel you will see difference between new and ancient language. You sometime will not be able to understand even read a sentence comfortably. But Arabic is a super one. You will be able to read and understand an 1000 year old Arabic novel easily as there are very little changes were needed for this language.
        Well, I forget which one is "standard", but arabic has like one or more major dialects per country. So Jordan and egypt speak different ones. Are you saying the written language is the same?

        I have some arabic courses, etc... But, to tell you the truth, I haven't gone through many. I have been a bit bad about keeping up, but the ones I have studied are Danish, German, French, Spanish, Hindi. So I know, to some degree, 3 of the 5 most popular languages. The other two, of course, are chinese and arabic. Chinese and arabic have a number of things that will seem foreign to many.

        I didn't even think of this before, though it IS one reason I never really looked at them that much, but for the 5 most popular languages, outside of english and spanish, which both use the latin alphabet, they ALL have different ways of conveying the written information. I WOULD say different alphabets, but that isn't quite right. I don't know about this part of arabic, but chinese tries to convey like concepts that may be used as words or to make up words. Hindi may have different sounds tied to a given position and the position may EVEN be out of place.

        Let's say you read every symbol in the word "hindi"(the name of the language) in order. It would spell ihndi! The "letter" for the first I is understood to FOLLOW the letter it precedes! SO, though it is WRITTEN IHNDI, it is pronounced HINDI. BTW as I recall, though the BASE letters in hindi are rather modest, there are actually about 150 characters after you add all the potential changes below where the character starts. There are more ABOVE the character, but they indicate interstitial vowels, and I believe they are relatively new to hindi. Of course, by relatively new, that could be like 100years plus.

        As for learning arabic? I found it hard enough to see the nuances in highschool, and my vision was far better then. My roommate showed me his farsi(persian) textbook, and farsi uses the arabic symbols. It is hard enough with hindi where a character may change such that the sound of the whole word may be different. I guess that might be almost as bad with chinese.

        For SYMBOLS, one could say latin written languages are the easiest. There are only about 30 characters in the languages, and the differences are relatively obvious. BTW, I say ABOUT 30 characters because, though English, Spanish, Danish, German, French, Italian etc... all effectively use the latin character set, they are all slightly different. If I recall correctly, English has only the base characters and nothing else. But the other languages added several. In spanish, even ll is considered to be a different character, pronounced like Y(almost as in yolk). In danish, for example, there is an A with a ring over it, which is written as AA if the a with a ring over it isn't available. It is pronounced like a hard sharp O though. German has, among others, the esset, which is spelled with two ss' if not available. etc...

        Steve
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        • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
          Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

          Well, I forget which one is "standard", but arabic has like one or more major dialects per country. So Jordan and egypt speak different ones. Are you saying the written language is the same?

          I have some arabic courses, etc... But, to tell you the truth, I haven't gone through many. I have been a bit bad about keeping up, but the ones I have studied are Danish, German, French, Spanish, Hindi. So I know, to some degree, 3 of the 5 most popular languages. The other two, of course, are chinese and arabic. Chinese and arabic have a number of things that will seem foreign to many.

          I didn't even think of this before, though it IS one reason I never really looked at them that much, but for the 5 most popular languages, outside of english and spanish, which both use the latin alphabet, they ALL have different ways of conveying the written information. I WOULD say different alphabets, but that isn't quite right. I don't know about this part of arabic, but chinese tries to convey like concepts that may be used as words or to make up words. Hindi may have different sounds tied to a given position and the position may EVEN be out of place.

          Let's say you read every symbol in the word "hindi"(the name of the language) in order. It would spell ihndi! The "letter" for the first I is understood to FOLLOW the letter it precedes! SO, though it is WRITTEN IHNDI, it is pronounced HINDI. BTW as I recall, though the BASE letters in hindi are rather modest, there are actually about 150 characters after you add all the potential changes below where the character starts. There are more ABOVE the character, but they indicate interstitial vowels, and I believe they are relatively new to hindi. Of course, by relatively new, that could be like 100years plus.

          As for learning arabic? I found it hard enough to see the nuances in highschool, and my vision was far better then. My roommate showed me his farsi(persian) textbook, and farsi uses the arabic symbols. It is hard enough with hindi where a character may change such that the sound of the whole word may be different. I guess that might be almost as bad with chinese.

          For SYMBOLS, one could say latin written languages are the easiest. There are only about 30 characters in the languages, and the differences are relatively obvious. BTW, I say ABOUT 30 characters because, though English, Spanish, Danish, German, French, Italian etc... all effectively use the latin character set, they are all slightly different. If I recall correctly, English has only the base characters and nothing else. But the other languages added several. In spanish, even ll is considered to be a different character, pronounced like Y(almost as in yolk). In danish, for example, there is an A with a ring over it, which is written as AA if the a with a ring over it isn't available. It is pronounced like a hard sharp O though. German has, among others, the esset, which is spelled with two ss' if not available. etc...

          Steve
          Steve; Is English your native tongue? I'm being serious here. Well written post.
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          • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
            Fully, two. English and Body.

            However, I do know quite a bit of Spanish and Latin and a little French.

            I haven't mastered any of these three by any means, unlike the English and Body languages.

            Body language is pretty much universal by the way.

            Terra
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            • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
              Originally Posted by MissTerraK View Post

              Fully, two. English and Body.

              However, I do know quite a bit of Spanish and Latin and a little French.

              I haven't mastered any of these three by any means, unlike the English and Body languages.

              Body language is pretty much universal by the way.

              Terra
              Terra; Your lips say "No", but your body language says "Hell No!, I'm calling the cops!"

              I learned years ago that knowing the definition of a vast number of words helps in understanding. The more "meanings of words" you know...the more you know. I'm assuming knowing more languages is similar. Is it? Anyone?
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              • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
                Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

                Terra; Your lips say "No", but your body language says "Hell No!, I'm calling the cops!"
                Ha! Well what is my body saying now? :p

                Terra
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            • Profile picture of the author Hossain
              Originally Posted by MissTerraK View Post

              Fully, two. English and Body.

              However, I do know quite a bit of Spanish and Latin and a little French.

              I haven't mastered any of these three by any means, unlike the English and Body languages.

              Body language is pretty much universal by the way.

              Terra
              I started learning Latin 2 years ago but soon I decided to stop it as I was messing Modern English words with Latin words. Lol. When I will get chance I am willing to learn French and specially German. Well body language is interesting one and I red a blog post on it. I have to know from you any link or ebook that you refer to learn BL.
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              • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
                Originally Posted by Hossain View Post

                I started learning Latin 2 years ago but soon I decided to stop it as I was messing Modern English words with Latin words. Lol.
                Ha! That must have sounded funny and threw some people for a loop!


                Originally Posted by Hossain View Post

                When I will get chance I am willing to learn French and specially German. Well body language is interesting one and I red a blog post on it. I have to know from you any link or ebook that you refer to learn BL.
                I learned about body language while in college. I studied the Arts and majored in Drama and have done quite a bit of acting. You need to know body language when you are portraying a character whether it be on stage or for film because if your body language is saying something completely different than the lines your character speaks, then your character becomes unbelievable and isn't good and makes for a bad production. Anyway, that was years ago and I honestly don't remember the name of the text and materials we used. They've probably all been updated since then anyway, lol!

                That being said, also having lived quite a bit of life and worked in many different settings, these are the things you just learn to recognize. I got to the point where when I first saw a client, customer, student, patient or person in general, I knew instantly what kind of day they were having, what kind of mood they were in and which emotion was most prevalent in them at this moment and already was running through my mind how I would greet or speak with them.

                As far as recommending a book or e-book on learning it, Body Language For Dummies would be a good place to start. The link is for Amazon and not an affiliate link.


                Terra
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            • Profile picture of the author seasoned
              Originally Posted by MissTerraK View Post

              Fully, two. English and Body.

              However, I do know quite a bit of Spanish and Latin and a little French.

              I haven't mastered any of these three by any means, unlike the English and Body languages.

              Body language is pretty much universal by the way.

              Terra
              Someone REALLY ought to get body language right, etc... I was once called racist because I held my arms in a ******VERY****** common position. I bet everyone on this board has done it. Male or female, 8 or 80, alone or in a group of thousands of people. I never said ANYTHING against the two complainants. One was a white male. The other was a white male that was iraqi. I never even worked much with them. I was on a different project. I knew that he was iraqi ONLY because HE told me. I never asked. Later, one of the most respected and humble people, by EVERYONE'S estimation came in, and held his arms the SAME way as I have done EVERYWHERE, and I said something like WOW, you ought to tell him how RACIST that is! Give me a break! I had to do SOMETHING with my arms.

              BTW I have read some STUPID books on body language. They have said it means not trusting, not comfortable, not listening. I may be HORRIBLE with body language, but if that were true, EVERYONE feels the same way, so why communicate it? It said NOTHING about racism though. BTW both of those guys turned out to be jerks to the companies they worked for. Effectively taking money and breaking contracts.

              Steve
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              • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
                Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

                Someone REALLY ought to get body language right, etc... I was once called racist because I held my arms in a ******VERY****** common position. I bet everyone on this board has done it. Male or female, 8 or 80, alone or in a group of thousands of people. I never said ANYTHING against the two complainants. One was a white male. The other was a white male that was iraqi. I never even worked much with them. I was on a different project. I knew that he was iraqi ONLY because HE told me. I never asked. Later, one of the most respected and humble people, by EVERYONE'S estimation came in, and held his arms the SAME way as I have done EVERYWHERE, and I said something like WOW, you ought to tell him how RACIST that is! Give me a break! I had to do SOMETHING with my arms.

                BTW I have read some STUPID books on body language. They have said it means not trusting, not comfortable, not listening. I may be HORRIBLE with body language, but if that were true, EVERYONE feels the same way, so why communicate it? It said NOTHING about racism though. BTW both of those guys turned out to be jerks to the companies they worked for. Effectively taking money and breaking contracts.

                Steve

                Hey Steve,

                I'm not sure how I missed your post yesterday. It must have been the thought of seeing a young Kim in a toga with a mohawk, lol!

                Anyway, body language involves much more than the way you hold your arms. Your whole body needs to be taken in to account like body stance, facial expressions, posture, demeanor, etc.

                I can't for the life of me figure out how someone could "read" that you were a racist from the way you held your arms!

                For instance, if I crossed my arms in front of me, I could be bored, angry, or even cold. The whole body must be read to determine which.

                Wow! Talk about slaughtering a language!!

                Anyway, I'm sorry you had to go through that.

                Terra
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                • Profile picture of the author seasoned
                  Originally Posted by MissTerraK View Post

                  Hey Steve,

                  I'm not sure how I missed your post yesterday. It must have been the thought of seeing a young Kim in a toga with a mohawk, lol!

                  Anyway, body language involves much more than the way you hold your arms. Your whole body needs to be taken in to account like body stance, facial expressions, posture, demeanor, etc.

                  I can't for the life of me figure out how someone could "read" that you were a racist from the way you held your arms!

                  For instance, if I crossed my arms in front of me, I could be bored, angry, or even cold. The whole body must be read to determine which.

                  Wow! Talk about slaughtering a language!!

                  Anyway, I'm sorry you had to go through that.

                  Terra
                  HOW can you not say ANYTHING bad against anyone, NEVER mention race or ethnicity, help them out, etc.... And be considered "racist" for supposedly hating a group that you would know ONLY they were a part of because they once told you?

                  Steve
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                  • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
                    Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

                    HOW can you not say ANYTHING bad against anyone, NEVER mention race or ethnicity, help them out, etc.... And be considered "racist" for supposedly hating a group that you would know ONLY they were a part of because they once told you?

                    Steve
                    I'm not sure I understand your question, but I'm going to try and answer it anyway, lol!

                    The "how" would be from "ignorance" of the considerer. Like it is used in this sentence: His racist attitudes were born out of ignorance. Not you, but the accuser.

                    And again, it is completely ignorant to judge someone as a racist by the way they hold their arms.

                    Oh, and speech isn't part of reading body language.

                    Terra
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          • Profile picture of the author seasoned
            Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

            Steve; Is English your native tongue? I'm being serious here. Well written post.
            Yes, English IS my native tongue. Given your past responses, I am not sure how to take your question.

            Steve
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            • Profile picture of the author KimW
              Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

              Steve; Is English your native tongue? I'm being serious here. Well written post.
              Originally Posted by MissTerraK View Post

              Fully, two. English and Body.

              However, I do know quite a bit of Spanish and Latin and a little French.

              I haven't mastered any of these three by any means, unlike the English and Body languages.

              Body language is pretty much universal by the way.

              Terra
              Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

              Yes, English IS my native tongue. Given your past responses, I am not sure how to take your question.

              Steve
              Terra,
              I forgot about Latin because it is not considered a spoken language,but I took 3 years of it in High School. I don't know if my mother still has it,but at one time she had a high school picture of me with a mohawk in a toga.

              Steve, Cluade did say well written post,and I think he meant it.
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              • Profile picture of the author seasoned
                Originally Posted by KimW View Post

                Steve, Cluade did say well written post,and I think he meant it.
                THANKS for saying that. If so, I thank Claude as well

                Steve
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              • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
                Originally Posted by KimW View Post

                Terra,
                I forgot about Latin because it is not considered a spoken language,but I took 3 years of it in High School. I don't know if my mother still has it,but at one time she had a high school picture of me with a mohark in a toga.
                Haha! My mom had one of me in a toga too, but minus the Mohawk! :p I don't know whatever happened to that photo...

                Terra
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            • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
              Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

              Yes, English IS my native tongue. Given your past responses, I am not sure how to take your question.

              Steve
              This time it was just a question. There was no joke or hidden meaning. Thanks for replying.
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        • Profile picture of the author Hossain
          Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

          Well, I forget which one is "standard", but arabic has like one or more major dialects per country. So Jordan and egypt speak different ones. Are you saying the written language is the same?

          I have some arabic courses, etc... But, to tell you the truth, I haven't gone through many. I have been a bit bad about keeping up, but the ones I have studied are Danish, German, French, Spanish, Hindi. So I know, to some degree, 3 of the 5 most popular languages. The other two, of course, are chinese and arabic. Chinese and arabic have a number of things that will seem foreign to many.

          I didn't even think of this before, though it IS one reason I never really looked at them that much, but for the 5 most popular languages, outside of english and spanish, which both use the latin alphabet, they ALL have different ways of conveying the written information. I WOULD say different alphabets, but that isn't quite right. I don't know about this part of arabic, but chinese tries to convey like concepts that may be used as words or to make up words. Hindi may have different sounds tied to a given position and the position may EVEN be out of place.

          Let's say you read every symbol in the word "hindi"(the name of the language) in order. It would spell ihndi! The "letter" for the first I is understood to FOLLOW the letter it precedes! SO, though it is WRITTEN IHNDI, it is pronounced HINDI. BTW as I recall, though the BASE letters in hindi are rather modest, there are actually about 150 characters after you add all the potential changes below where the character starts. There are more ABOVE the character, but they indicate interstitial vowels, and I believe they are relatively new to hindi. Of course, by relatively new, that could be like 100years plus.

          As for learning arabic? I found it hard enough to see the nuances in highschool, and my vision was far better then. My roommate showed me his farsi(persian) textbook, and farsi uses the arabic symbols. It is hard enough with hindi where a character may change such that the sound of the whole word may be different. I guess that might be almost as bad with chinese.

          For SYMBOLS, one could say latin written languages are the easiest. There are only about 30 characters in the languages, and the differences are relatively obvious. BTW, I say ABOUT 30 characters because, though English, Spanish, Danish, German, French, Italian etc... all effectively use the latin character set, they are all slightly different. If I recall correctly, English has only the base characters and nothing else. But the other languages added several. In spanish, even ll is considered to be a different character, pronounced like Y(almost as in yolk). In danish, for example, there is an A with a ring over it, which is written as AA if the a with a ring over it isn't available. It is pronounced like a hard sharp O though. German has, among others, the esset, which is spelled with two ss' if not available. etc...

          Steve
          I am not saying Arabic is more standard than English or any other languages. I am not a Linguist. So I can't technically analyze what makes superior one language on other. I just said In My Opinion Arabic is the best one. As far as I know Yes written format is almost same but still I am not sure as I learned Arabic from an online course materiel and an Yemeni friend.

          Ap to bahat gun samp ho (Hindi). I fully agree with you that Chinese and Arabic are little bit different from other languages.

          I cant read and write in Hindi. Not at all. But I am good in this language even some native Hindi speakers didn't believe first time when they heard that I am not from India. I am not sure about Hindi alphabet but I think if avoid grammar (not fully) when learning English and then start with some conversations along with sentence structures and continue practicing with native speakers you will be able to learn languages more quickly.
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          • Profile picture of the author seasoned
            Originally Posted by Hossain View Post

            I am not saying Arabic is more standard than English or any other languages. I am not a Linguist. So I can't technically analyze what makes superior one language on other. I just said In My Opinion Arabic is the best one. As far as I know Yes written format is almost same but still I am not sure as I learned Arabic from an online course materiel and an Yemeni friend.
            Yeah, I can't speak to arabic, and wasn't saying anything about one being better.

            Steve
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            • Profile picture of the author Hossain
              Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

              Yeah, I can't speak to arabic, and wasn't saying anything about one being better.

              Steve
              No problem Steve.
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      • Profile picture of the author HeySal
        Originally Posted by Hossain View Post

        You who have interest on foreign languages if you are not planning to learn Arabic then missing a big one. In my opinion Arabic is the richest language among all my known languages. Extremely polished language too. If you read a 200 years old English novel or a just 100 year old Hindi novel you will see difference between new and ancient language. You sometime will not be able to understand even read a sentence comfortably. But Arabic is a super one. You will be able to read and understand an 1000 year old Arabic novel easily as there are very little changes were needed for this language.
        That to me stands as testimony of a pretty tightly knitted, isolated society with some undying normes. Language, being merely a code for our thought, always changes as society changes - an invasion can change language with startling speed. This is basically our misinformed politicians demand political correctness in the US now. They believe they will change our thought processes. I suppose it does in some form - but not in the way they were hoping it would.

        I learned French and German. German in a conversational capacity because I lived there, and I took a couple of years of French in college...........and remember very little of either. I haven't used either in over 30 years, and I never did learn them well enough to think in them so I just forgot them over time.

        I do have a degree in linguistics, though, so I can tell a lot of things about culture from their language if I know the structural pattern and have way to translate the words.

        I've been thinking more and more about learning Russian lately. I probably will learn it at least remedially. Might be a good idea for something to do this winter.
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        • Profile picture of the author Hossain
          Originally Posted by HeySal View Post

          That to me stands as testimony of a pretty tightly knitted, isolated society with some undying normes. Language, being merely a code for our thought, always changes as society changes - an invasion can change language with startling speed. This is basically our misinformed politicians demand political correctness in the US now. They believe they will change our thought processes. I suppose it does in some form - but not in the way they were hoping it would.
          Politicians are being hijacked by businessmen. And we general people are hypnotized by Politicians. Like food pyramid. Giants are on the top and we the normal people are on the bottom of the pyramid. I don't see any difference between ancient Egypt and modern countries. Ancient Egypt was ruled by Faraos and Jews were downtrodden and now our so called modern Nobel laureate politicians, businessmen, Lawyers, Technocrats, Bureaucrats are ruling modern democratic countries and we general people are fulfilling dreams of our rulers. So why should we expect anything good from the politicians?
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          • Profile picture of the author thunderbird
            Originally Posted by Hossain View Post

            Politicians are being hijacked by businessmen. And we general people are hypnotized by Politicians. Like food pyramid. Giants are on the top and we the normal people are on the bottom of the pyramid. I don't see any difference between ancient Egypt and modern countries. Ancient Egypt was ruled by Faraos and Jews were downtrodden and now our so called modern Nobel laureate politicians, businessmen, Lawyers, Technocrats, Bureaucrats are ruling modern democratic countries and we general people are fulfilling dreams of our rulers. So why should we expect anything good from the politicians?
            There is an ugly welfare situation taking place, in which tax-money is siphoned to propped-up corporations that, in turn, sponsor corrupt politicians. It is circular. It isn't much reported because these mega-welfare beneficiaries own the news media.
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            • Profile picture of the author seasoned
              Originally Posted by thunderbird View Post

              There is an ugly welfare situation taking place, in which tax-money is siphoned to propped-up corporations that, in turn, sponsor corrupt politicians. It is circular. It isn't much reported because these mega-welfare beneficiaries own the news media.
              HECK, I listened to a talk show, and this one farmer called in and, while saying he didn't want HIS subsidy taken away, he spoke against other's subsidies. FURTHER, he bashed a politician (who happened to also own a farm and therefore got the subsidy) for doing a thing to help the subsidy when he REALLY put the subsidy into a situation where, unlike decades previous, could be voted on on its OWN merits! Previous to this, voting down the subsidy would vote down part of welfare!!!!!!! It is REALLY crazy how much hypocrisy there is, and WHERE it is!

              As for the politicians being like pharoes? Yeah, only NOW we have like 600 potentials. Of course, it usually comes down to three that code negate any other.

              Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author waterotter
    English, French is rusty, Sign Language.

    I also read lips and sometimes use my fingers for signs that are not considered ASL (American Sign Language). It's amazing how effective that can be at times!
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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    @ Claude - I'd assume that knowing more languages would lead to knowing
    more about religious and cultural traditions, and native foods and customs. My guess.

    I've noticed that all my hotel guests from India speak and understand
    English much better than the majority of visitors from other countries.

    I asked an Indian guest who checked out yesterday why this might be the case.
    He explained that they learn English in grade school and that English is the
    language used in school. And, it's because the dialect varies from State to
    State so they decided to adopt a common language.

    Dan
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    • Profile picture of the author Hossain
      Originally Posted by bizgrower View Post

      @ Claude - I'd assume that knowing more languages would lead to knowing more about religious and cultural traditions, and native foods and customs. My guess.

      Dan
      Fully agree with you. Learning more languages like making tours to foreign countries. Sometime I think how lazy we are! We spend thousands of dollars to make trips in foreign tourist places but cant spend some time to learn new languages which will help us to learn more deeply about the countries. It doesn't mean I am against tourism though.
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    • Profile picture of the author seasoned
      Originally Posted by bizgrower View Post

      @ Claude - I'd assume that knowing more languages would lead to knowing
      more about religious and cultural traditions, and native foods and customs. My guess.

      I've noticed that all my hotel guests from India speak and understand
      English much better than the majority of visitors from other countries.

      I asked an Indian guest who checked out yesterday why this might be the case.
      He explained that they learn English in grade school and that English is the
      language used in school. And, it's because the dialect varies from State to
      State so they decided to adopt a common language.

      Dan
      Well, a LOT of them don't speak english well AT ALL! But there are over 30(as I recall) "official" languages. Some ARE like dialects of hindi, but others aren't. They are at the lower levels of government. For the country, there are really only two, english and hindi. Hindi is probably easier for them, etc... From what I understand, certain areas are more likely to have english as a secondary language. You have to realize though that most that go to countries like the US or great britain, etc... have at LEAST a bachelors, because of work visa laws.

      But MAN, have you seen some of the signs there? They may have several languages on them, as many use different charactersets ALSO!

      Languages with official status in India - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

      Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author Brandon Tanner
    Originally Posted by Hossain View Post

    How many languages do you know?
    Four.

    PHP, Javascript, .NET, and English.

    And I know just enough Spanish to communicate the most important things, like...

    Donde esta el bar mas cercano?
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    • Profile picture of the author Hossain
      Originally Posted by Brandon Tanner View Post

      Four.

      PHP, Javascript, .NET, and English.

      And I know just enough Spanish to communicate the most important things, like...

      Donde esta el bar mas cercano?
      .NET? Then you can add some more as .NET package contains 4 (as far as I know) languages.

      C, C++, Java, Python, PHP, Javascript, MySQL, CSS, (if you call it programming language), Assembly and 8 regular languages = 17!!! WOW!! I never thought I know 17 languages!!
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      • Profile picture of the author trizzyless
        I speak two languages. And I know a little bit about German.
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  • Profile picture of the author Alex Barboza
    Spanish (native) and English. Always wanted to learn Portuguese and Italian.
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  • Profile picture of the author mtihani
    I speak 4.

    English, French, Arabic, Spanish.
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  • Profile picture of the author PeterMFL
    I speak English, Greek and Japanese Need to keep improving my Japanese though!
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  • Profile picture of the author powerofschool
    I know, English, Telugu, Tamil, Hindi, Urdu..Little Arabic.
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  • Profile picture of the author taskemann
    Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, English, some German (which is kinda similar to the Scandi languages), HTML and CSS. I also know Binary and Morse
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  • Profile picture of the author subisa852
    I can speak two languages which are English and my national dialect which is Tagalog.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mollywhite
    Just 2 for me.
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  • Profile picture of the author maricelu
    I know Romanian, English and Russian + a bit of Ukranian
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    • Profile picture of the author Ozmagic
      Portuguese (native), english and learning spanish.
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      • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
        I speak English, and French quite fluently. I have a good understanding of Italian (4 years of Latin helped!) and I know a little Maltese - my parents were both from Malta.
        I would like to learn Spanish next. I love learning languages.
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  • Profile picture of the author TrumpiaTim
    2.5 Languages!
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  • Profile picture of the author Alexia30
    3 English, Spanish and Russian
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  • Profile picture of the author drem
    This is such an inspirational thread for me. I am currently addicted to learning Italian and would also love to expand to Maltese at some point as my family speaks it. I do have a question for all of you linguists. What is the one tip you can give to others wanting to learn a new language?
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    • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
      Originally Posted by drem View Post

      What is the one tip you can give to others wanting to learn a new language?
      find someone who speaks the language you want to learn and speak to them only in that language as often as possible, and make it as much fun to do as possible
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  • Profile picture of the author HN
    Banned
    I am late to this party, but figured to chime in anyway.
    I speak: Estonian, Russian, English, Swedish, Spanish
    understand (can read): Finnish, Norwegian, Danish, German, Italian
    Learning: Arabic (MSA), Mandarin, Icelandic, Latvian, Lithuanian, Hungarian, Greek, Hindi, Sanskrit

    As far as basic vocabulary, I know the Swadesh lists (207 words) in at least 50 different languages with about 95% accuracy.

    I can easily memorize 60-100 words per hour. So if I try really hard I can learn 500-1000 words a day. Never tried that, but could take up the challenge.
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  • Profile picture of the author David Braybrooke
    The fantastic translation tools available online allow me to know all of them.
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  • I can read, write and speak in 2 languages (English and Filipino). I truly regret not finishing my sign language classes when I was a kid. It stimulates a completely different area of the brain compared to verbal languages. I often wonder if I finished those classes and practice the language would it have made me smarter.
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  • I can speak and read three languages and English is the major one. You should be very good
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  • Profile picture of the author AmandaJane
    8?? Seriously? Wow!

    I know two. But I am also learning some French, since French is a common language here in Canada. We had to learn basic sentences when we first got here.
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