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#2308 - 06/09/00 04:17 AM Re: false friends  
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Bingley Offline
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Jakarta
JMH, if French has fewer words, wouldn't there be less likelihood of confusion and more room for error without saying something you didn't mean?

As for the range of accents in English, does anybody know how much French accents differ from region to region, not to mention from France itself to other countries such as Belgium, Switzerland, Canada? Juanmaria, what's the situation with Spanish? How much do different accents differ?

PS Indonesian is part of the Austronesian family, which also includes Malagasy (from Madagascar), Tagalog, local languages in Indonesia and the Philippines, Maori, and various Pacific Island languages all the way over to Easter Island.


Bingley


Bingley
#2309 - 06/09/00 02:39 PM Re: false friends  
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AnnaStrophic Offline
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lower upstate New York
>Sorry Anna, but at this moment Iím busy trying to understand some hieroglyphics that I have found written on my dusty car.
If I only knew where I have left my Rosetta stone?.

JM, you know you've mastered a language when you can make jokes in it, and people actually laugh. Congratulations!


#2310 - 06/09/00 07:21 PM Re: false friends  
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David108 Offline
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David108  Offline
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Auckland, New Zealand
>>does anybody know how much French accents differ from region to region, not to mention from France itself to other countries such as Belgium, Switzerland, Canada? <<

Bingley,
Here's an illustration of how French has changed in one region over time:

My father had his early education in France, since his father was travelling in "Darkest Africa", and the family was somewhat fragmented. So Dad spoke a very fluent and rich French. I learnt French from him, but it was not the language we spoke at home.

Dad maintained a regular correspondnce with French speakers, thus maintaining his vocabulary, or so he thought. When he and my mother travelled to visit family in France in later life, he discovered, to his great dismay, that he was almost lost in the language - spoken French had moved so far in the intervening years. A comment made to him by a cousin was to the effect that he was talking archaic French.

He seldom used the language after that.

I guess any language and its vocabulary will grow and develop, but the key here is that the pronounciation itself had shifted.




#2311 - 06/10/00 11:41 AM Re: false friends  
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Jackie Offline
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Louisville, Kentucky
>>I guess any language and its vocabulary will grow and develop, but the key here is that the pronounciation itself had shifted.<<
David,
that strikes me as really strange! Does anyone from anywhere know of this having happened with English--on a
wide-spread basis, that is? I know that regional dialects
change pronunciation (good heavens! I first typed that as
"pornunciation"--gives rise to all kinds of possibilities,
doesn't it??) from place to place: for ex., some in the
U.S. South say IN-sur-ance, and people in the rest of
the country, as far as I know, say in-SUR-ance.
But, thinking back to adult conversations that I heard as
a child, I can't tell any major differences from today.

I wonder what the cause of this was? Societal change in
some specific way? I will hazard a guess that it is
possible that someone who was born or grew up around 1900
might have been taught the old language of the aristocrats, if his or her grandparents had anything to do with it.
Then during the changes wrought by the industrial revolution, this way of speaking became frowned on? A hundred and fifty year late "liberte, egalite, fraternite"?






#2312 - 06/12/00 05:35 AM Re: false friends  
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Bingley Offline
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Bingley  Offline
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Jakarta
If it comes to that, think of the difference between our own dear queen's pronunciation and that of the younger royals. It seems to have been quite a sudden thing -- there's a very audible difference between Princes Charles and Edward.

Bingley


Bingley
#2313 - 06/12/00 07:39 AM Re: false friends  
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Rubrick Offline
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Rubrick  Offline
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Somewhere outside New York
> As for the range of accents in English, does anybody know how much French accents differ from region to region, not to
mention from France itself to other countries such as Belgium, Switzerland, Canada? Juanmaria, what's the situation
with Spanish? How much do different accents differ?

I know of huge variations in the French accent throughout France and after a few recent visits to Belgium I have started to discern differences in the dialects (though I stayed mainly in the Flemish region - much nicer people). One thing that struck me was the complete change in language. In France (and French generally) the words for 'eighty' and 'ninety' are, respectively, quatre-vingt and quatre-vingt dix which translate as 'four twenty's' and 'four twenty's and ten'.

In Belgian French they are more akin to English and use Octante and Nonante instead. After years of using the former it takes a conscious effort to use the latter.


#2314 - 06/14/00 08:09 PM Re: false friends  
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juanmaria Offline
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juanmaria  Offline
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Malaga, Spain.
>As for the range of accents in English, does anybody know how much French accents differ from region to region, not to mention from France itself to other countries such as Belgium, Switzerland, Canada? Juanmaria, what's the situation with Spanish? How much do different accents differ?


We have very different accents from region to region. Only in Spain there are at least eight easy recognizable regional accents but I, as Andalusian, can recognize at least four types of Andalusian accent, so I suppose that people from other regions can make further distinctions.
Regarding South American accents, I think I can distinguish among Mexican, Argentinean or Venezuelan but I canít tell a region from another, Iím sure that people from those countries can distinguish accents from different regions.
Lately we are importing TV programs, mainly soap operas, from South America and this is improving our understanding of their Spanish.
Personally my favorites are Cuban and other Caribbean accents ďPapi, mi amolĒ.


Juan Maria.

#2315 - 06/14/00 08:11 PM Re: false friends  
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juanmaria Offline
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juanmaria  Offline
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Malaga, Spain.
>JM, you know you've mastered a language when you can make jokes in it, and people actually laugh.



Juan Maria.

#2316 - 07/19/00 01:11 PM Re: false friends  
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jhar Offline
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jhar  Offline
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Some years ago, in Amsterdam, I met an Englishman who had lived in the Netherlands for some years. We got into a discussion of the Dutch language. He told me that the Dutch were so particular about pronuciation that movies that were set in outlying regions of the country were subtitled in "High Dutch" to overcome difficulties with dialects.


#2317 - 07/19/00 04:47 PM Re: false friends  
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Jackie Offline
Jackie  Offline

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Louisville, Kentucky
Welcome, jhar!

I'm glad, or perhaps I should say not, to know that there
are sticklers in other cultures!


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