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The Most Useful Languages


Voinjama
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So I am progressing well with my German, it is just a shame that there isn't any one around that is fluent in the language. I have always wondered how easy or hard German was in relation to other European languages. Anyone know please?

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  • 2 years later...

Thread resurrection! 

 

Seriously now thinking about learning a new language.. Spanish.

 

Firstly, how are people getting on who are learning a new language? I think Stevo was learning Spanish? Voiny, how you getting on with your German?

 

Also, what methods you using? Nightschool? Visual learning like Rosetta Stone? Audio learning (Pimsleur)? 

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When I got lost in Germany after drinking one too many jagerbombs (I tend to wander when I get drunk), I didn't know any German and managed to get to my relatives who we were staying with. Pretty much everyone spoke English and understood it. Although this was in the west, near Koln so maybe it is different in the east..

 

I would love to learn Spanish purely because it is very useful in most of South America, Mexico..

Edited by AVFCforever1991
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Thread resurrection! 

 

Seriously now thinking about learning a new language.. Spanish.

 

Firstly, how are people getting on who are learning a new language? I think Stevo was learning Spanish? Voiny, how you getting on with your German?

 

Also, what methods you using? Nightschool? Visual learning like Rosetta Stone? Audio learning (Pimsleur)? 

 

 

I gave up German at the beginning of last year and decided to switch to Spanish. As much as I like the German language and loved living their twice, I figured Spanish is more useful. I really want to go to Colombia in the next 3 years to sample the local uh delicacy :P . I am using Pimsleur which is really useful. But the problem is I am not consistent enough so my progress is not as great as it should be.

 

Spanish has very simple grammar and follows the same rules and patterns so it is an easier language to pick up then German even though the words are less similar. In my opinion everyone should know 2 languages fluently.

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Little by little I try to teach myself Dutch. My mum didn't bother to teach any of us and when I have asked her, she kind of focuses on the exact pronunciations of things a little too much for a beginner. Reminds me of this

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=457nGTf4fsQ

 

 

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As I mentioned ages ago that I love languages, I can speak (Albeit not all fluently)

 

English, Irish, Jamaican Patois (This counts :)), Spanish, French, German, Italian, Dutch, Punjabi, Hindi, Bangladeshi, Japanese, Chinese, Mandarin, Portuguese, Norwegian, Swedish and Danish.

 

I've been surrounded by different languages all of my life so have been studying a fair few of them for a long time. They have helped me out a lot with my work within the community and around the world.

 

I guess English (Americanized especially), Spanish and French are the most useful as they are spoken by a lot of people around the globe and can provide a good basis for most of the others.

 

The Asian languages are useful too as I have been able to communicate well with certain people and have been able to act as an interpreter.

 

 

Without meaning to piss on your parade, there is no language called Bangladeshi. They generally speak Sylhet or Bengali. Bengali is also spoken in the Eastern part of India.

 

Also you have listed 20  languages there which is a hell of a lot. Alex Rawlings formerly of Oxford University is the UK's most multilingual person and he only speaks 11. Now I know you said not all fluently, but I'm guessing there are some in there where you probably only know a a few words, that does not constitute speaking that language to any level.

 

How many of those are you fluent in?

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You'd be surprised what Bangladeshi covers, it's a lot of regional dialects both in the UK and abroad. I'm fluent in the first eight and am less knowledgeable as the list goes on.

 

Do you know what I do for a living?

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As I mentioned ages ago that I love languages, I can speak (Albeit not all fluently)

 

English, Irish, Jamaican Patois (This counts :)), Spanish, French, German, Italian, Dutch, Punjabi, Hindi, Bangladeshi, Japanese, Chinese, Mandarin, Portuguese, Norwegian, Swedish and Danish.

 

I've been surrounded by different languages all of my life so have been studying a fair few of them for a long time. They have helped me out a lot with my work within the community and around the world.

 

I guess English (Americanized especially), Spanish and French are the most useful as they are spoken by a lot of people around the globe and can provide a good basis for most of the others.

 

The Asian languages are useful too as I have been able to communicate well with certain people and have been able to act as an interpreter.

 

 

Without meaning to piss on your parade, there is no language called Bangladeshi. They generally speak Sylhet or Bengali. Bengali is also spoken in the Eastern part of India.

 

Also you have listed 20  languages there which is a hell of a lot. Alex Rawlings formerly of Oxford University is the UK's most multilingual person and he only speaks 11. Now I know you said not all fluently, but I'm guessing there are some in there where you probably only know a a few words, that does not constitute speaking that language to any level.

 

How many of those are you fluent in?

 

 

You're more defecating on his parade...

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You'd be surprised what Bangladeshi covers, it's a lot of regional dialects both in the UK and abroad. I'm fluent in the first eight and am less knowledgeable as the list goes on.

 

Do you know what I do for a living?

 

 

No I  don't but I guess it is something to do with languages. Interpreter or language recruitment consultant perhaps? I don't know.  I know a fair bit about Bangladeshi languages as I lived in Newham for 4 years.

 

Anyway 8 languages fluently is very impressive.

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Yeah that is part of it.

 

I work in Security and although I'm based purely in Birmingham now I've worked in a few countries over the years.

 

For one job I had to have a good knowledge of at least five languages.

 

I've loved languages all my life anyway, as I wrote and have always been encouraged by parents to be multilingual.

 

You made a good point, I should have been specific but I'm nowhere near competent in any of the dialects so I generalised. I have heard others I've worked with use that generalisation though.

 

As well as Sylhet and Bengali there's a lot more, just look at this list

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Languages_of_Bangladesh

 

I know it's wikipedia but it's quite a realistic list

 

Bengali-Assamese branch:
 
Assamese: almost universally considered a separate language from Bengali, although it can be considered as part of a larger Bengali-Assamese dialect continuum. Also a major language of Assam State, India.
 
Bishnupriya Manipuri
 
Bengali proper: spoken all over the country.
 
Chakma: spoken in the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT). Unrelated to the Tibeto-Burman languages more commonly found in the region.
 
Hajong: originally a Tibeto-Burman language that has shifted over time to an Indic language.
 
Rohingya: spoken in Arakan State, Burma, and by refugees from that region, currently living in Bangladesh's Chittagong Division. While it is also often called Arkani by native speakers, it is unrelated to the Rakhine of Arakan State.
 
Tangchangya: spoken in the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT). Unrelated to the Tibeto-Burman languages more commonly found in the region.
 
Oraon Sadri: also a major language of Jharkhand State, India.
[bihari language]: spoken primarily by Muslim refugees from Bihar State, India.
 
Non-Indic languages
 
The indigenous languages of the region are members of the Tibeto-Burman, Austroasiatic, and Dravidian families. Most of these languages are spoken in mountainous areas.
 
Tibeto-Burman languages
 
The mountainous areas along the northern and eastern edges of the Indian Subcontinent are inhabited primarily by speakers of Tibeto-Burman languages. Indigenous Tibeto-Burman-speaking communities are found through the northern, eastern, and especially the southeastern parts of Bangladesh.
 
A'Tong
Chak
Chin languages:
Asho
Bawm
Falam
Haka
Khumi
Koch
Garo: also a major language of Meghalaya State, India
Megam
Meitei Manipuri: also a major language of Manipur State, India
Mizo: also a major language of Mizoram State, India
Mru
Pangkhua
Rakhine/Marma: also a major language of Arakan State, Burma
Tripuri languages: a major language group of Tripura State, India
Kok Borok
Riang
Tippera
Usoi
 
Austroasiatic languages
 
While the more widely-spoken and better-known Austroasiatic languages are spoken in Southeast Asia (e.g. Khmer and Vietnamese), smaller languages of that family are spoken by indigenous communities of northern and eastern Bangladesh.
 
Khasi: also a major language of Meghalaya State, India
Koda
Mundari
Pnar
Santali
War-Jaintia
 
Dravidian languages
 
Two Dravidian languages are spoken by indigenous communities of western Bangladesh.
 
Kurukh

Sauria Paharia

 

:D Tons

 

And like you say, a lot of languages cross over to India, Pakistan and other countries.

 

Hopefully one day, if I live to be about 100, I will be able to master all languages :) 

 

Although language is always changing and evolving so that would be a challenge.

 

I can also speak a bit of Russian too, I missed that one haha.

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Even though you have all those languages in Bangladesh, the truth is that 95% of the population who are literate speak Sylhet and Bengali. They may speak some of those others as an addition but Sylhet and Bengali are the main ones. I caught one guy out at work a few years ago who claimed he spoke German, I asked him ''wie alt bist du'' which is very basic German, he could not respond. Now I'm not accusing you of this, but a lot of people claim to speak a certain language but in reality can only speak about 10% of it.

 

My ultimate aim is to be fluent in Spanish (90% competency) and get my German up to intermediate level again. That for me will be enough.

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a lot of people claim to speak a certain language but in reality can only speak about 10% of it.

 

No, you're right to think that, I'm nowhere near fluent in the last ten I listed + Russian, although I think I'm alright with Portuguese. I apologise if I made it seem I'd mastered them all, my intention was just to display how interested I am in different languages and dialects.

 

 

My ultimate aim is to be fluent in Spanish (90% competency)

 

Spanish is a great language because it's spoken in so many countries, it's also a good base for a few other languages.

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Even knowing just ten percent of another language is pretty good going. I'd bet you'd be surprised at how well you'd be able to cope in everyday conversation with just that little amount.

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