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Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
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Titania Offline
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Post: #21
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
There was once this article on Texan german on the BBC:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-22490560

These elderly people have got a German accent to my ears but their usage of German sounds incredibly old-fashioned to me. And living in London it is a little weird when I meet Germans here. Generally you can tell that someone has got German as their native tongue but you can tell that they were not brought up in Germany like I was. It is hard to explain, realy, as these people have not got a British accent, it is like a slight hesitation when they speak German, a bit like an untuned instrument.
01-03-2014 10:06 AM
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Et tu? Offline
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Post: #22
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
Thanks for posting that video, Titania -- a lot of the things they spoke about reminded me strongly of the German-speaking community (also dying out) in my area as well. The immigrants here came around 1880-1900 and therefore were not as long established as the Texas population, but the language usage did start to decline around the World Wars as well. I remember my father saying that during WWII he and his friends were not allowed to speak German in school, and if they were caught, they would be smacked with a ruler! (Happily, my dad avoided any ruler-smacking and this negative attitude changed a generation later. By the time I was in school, German was offered as a class at the high school level.)

In the video, somehow the "younger" speakers' German sounds distinctly Texan-American to me. However, the one really old lady (she looks like she may be in her nineties) spoke with an accent more similar to the German I remember hearing as a child. I imagine the old-fashioned sound of their usage must come from the fact that their dialect has been insulated from the greater German-speaking population. It would be as if a group of English-speakers from Charles Dickens' time moved to Siberia and raised several generations speaking the same Victorian-era dialect.
01-03-2014 04:28 PM
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Titania Offline
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Post: #23
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
@Et tu: That elderly lady in the video has got a typical German accent as it is still in use nowadays but she translated the sentence "What did they call the child?" as "Wie haben sie das Kind geiheißt?" which sounds incredibly strange to me, I would say "genannt" instead of "geiheißt".
01-06-2014 10:29 AM
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Et tu? Offline
Monolith

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Post: #24
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
(01-06-2014 10:29 AM)Titania Wrote:  @Et tu: That elderly lady in the video has got a typical German accent as it is still in use nowadays but she translated the sentence "What did they call the child?" as "Wie haben sie das Kind geiheißt?" which sounds incredibly strange to me, I would say "genannt" instead of "geiheißt".

That's interesting -- I had a chance to talk to my friend about his Finnish mom's accent, and he said basically the same thing about her as you are saying about the elderly lady in the video. Although her relatives in Finland don't notice any difference between her accent and theirs, some of her vocabulary and idioms sound outdated. She is well into her eighties, so she would have been learning her native tongue in the 1930s.
01-06-2014 04:43 PM
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Titania Offline
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Post: #25
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
@Et tu: Language chancges all the time. I have not lived in Germany for thirteen years but I do go there regularly. My sister is a German teacher and she somettimes tells me of "new" words that I don't know.
01-06-2014 05:49 PM
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David W. Offline
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Post: #26
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
From what I know the French language tries its utmost to block the flow of loanwords (especially English/American ones), so I'm curious to know whether the Germans have been doing something similar. Is there an overabundance of American cultural terms that made their way into German?



« L'homme n'est qu'un roseau, le plus faible de la nature, mais c'est un roseau *pensant*. Il ne faut pas que l'univers entier s'arme pour l'écraser; une vapeur, une goutte d'eau suffit pour le tuer. Mais quand l'univers l'écraserait, l'homme serait encore plus noble que ce qui le tue, parce qu'il sait qu'il meurt et l'avantage que l'univers a sur lui; l'univers n'en sait rien. »

( “Man is but a reed, the most feeble thing in nature; but he is a *thinking* reed. The entire universe need not arm itself to crush him: a vapour, a drop of water suffices to kill him. But, if the universe were to crush him, man would still be more noble than that which killed him, because he knows that he dies and the advantage which the universe has over him; the universe knows nothing of this.” )

— Blaise Pascal



“如果你此生有幸,可以得到他的一个承诺。”

( “If you are truly blessed in this life, you might get a promise out of him.” )

— Caption on a Severus Snape splash-page from MovieView magazine, issue #412

(This post was last modified: 01-07-2014 01:37 PM by David W..)
01-07-2014 02:41 AM
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Titania Offline
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Post: #27
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
@David W.: The germans call it "neudeutsch". A lot of English words have crept into the German language, mostly American, but quite often words are adopted incorrectly. For example a "manbag" was marketed as "bodybag" over there... No, the Germans are not like the French, they adopt all these English words and when you walk down a city centre you see so many of them you have to remind yourself that you are in Germany.
01-07-2014 10:42 AM
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David W. Offline
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Post: #28
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
I've read a teenie bit into the subject, and I'm interested in learning more; is it true that Americanism language has started to corrupt the German grammer as well?



« L'homme n'est qu'un roseau, le plus faible de la nature, mais c'est un roseau *pensant*. Il ne faut pas que l'univers entier s'arme pour l'écraser; une vapeur, une goutte d'eau suffit pour le tuer. Mais quand l'univers l'écraserait, l'homme serait encore plus noble que ce qui le tue, parce qu'il sait qu'il meurt et l'avantage que l'univers a sur lui; l'univers n'en sait rien. »

( “Man is but a reed, the most feeble thing in nature; but he is a *thinking* reed. The entire universe need not arm itself to crush him: a vapour, a drop of water suffices to kill him. But, if the universe were to crush him, man would still be more noble than that which killed him, because he knows that he dies and the advantage which the universe has over him; the universe knows nothing of this.” )

— Blaise Pascal



“如果你此生有幸,可以得到他的一个承诺。”

( “If you are truly blessed in this life, you might get a promise out of him.” )

— Caption on a Severus Snape splash-page from MovieView magazine, issue #412

(This post was last modified: 01-07-2014 01:25 PM by David W..)
01-07-2014 01:21 PM
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Ianus Incantatus Offline
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Post: #29
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
(01-07-2014 02:41 AM)David W. Wrote:  From what I know the French language tries its utmost to block the flow of loanwords (especially English/American ones), [...]

Nitpicking: I'm not sure if the French language is trying its utmost. Perhaps the French, or l'Académie française, or some other instances. The success of such attempts is not always high.

I believe most of us here are aware that this kind of linguistic purism is in many cases close to nonsensical, as borrowing new words from other languages is a common and natural feature of all natural languages. Anyway, this already quite old scheme has been re-circulating in social media in the last couple of days:

Lexical Distance Among the Languages of Europe

Disclaimer: Not all fight against loan words is nonsense. It is often very bad communication to overload a message with foreign words and expressions.
01-07-2014 03:39 PM
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Titania Offline
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Post: #30
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
I think that Germans are generally more open to Americanisms than the French people are but it is happening in France as well. In Iceland they also have a law that everything has to be translated but they are also Americanisms in the spoken language these days and quite a lot of things have got an "official" Icelandic word as well as an American one.
01-07-2014 04:22 PM
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David W. Offline
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Post: #31
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
Nitpicking accepted, Ianus. You're right about the people doing the real conscious effort in things.

A real example of loanwords gone mad would be the Japanese language in contrast with Chinese, over here we would usually loan a term for a while before Chinesizing it: e.g. the telephone was first translated into 德律风 (dé lü fēng), and later into 电话 ("electronic conversing"), exceptions were made when the chinese term would be too lengthy for practical usage (like NBA during a tv broadcast); whereas the Japanese language seemingly always transliterate foreign terms into de facto loan words via Katakana, the most egregious example being that quick-served noodles was called "instant noodles" in katatana pronounciation, despite the fact that it was invented by a Japanese person.



« L'homme n'est qu'un roseau, le plus faible de la nature, mais c'est un roseau *pensant*. Il ne faut pas que l'univers entier s'arme pour l'écraser; une vapeur, une goutte d'eau suffit pour le tuer. Mais quand l'univers l'écraserait, l'homme serait encore plus noble que ce qui le tue, parce qu'il sait qu'il meurt et l'avantage que l'univers a sur lui; l'univers n'en sait rien. »

( “Man is but a reed, the most feeble thing in nature; but he is a *thinking* reed. The entire universe need not arm itself to crush him: a vapour, a drop of water suffices to kill him. But, if the universe were to crush him, man would still be more noble than that which killed him, because he knows that he dies and the advantage which the universe has over him; the universe knows nothing of this.” )

— Blaise Pascal



“如果你此生有幸,可以得到他的一个承诺。”

( “If you are truly blessed in this life, you might get a promise out of him.” )

— Caption on a Severus Snape splash-page from MovieView magazine, issue #412

01-08-2014 05:57 AM
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Serpentine Offline
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Post: #32
RE: Grammatical Garden a.k.a. Language Freaks Playground
"Even Racists Got the Blues"

https://thegeekygaeilgeoir.wordpress.com...the-blues/

Quote:OK…I have to say that, most of the time, I feel a little bit sorry for people who make horrendous translation mistakes. This is not one of those times.

This pic came across my desk about nine months ago, and it may just be the worst example of a self-translation disaster I’ve ever seen.

In fact, it’s so bad, and so out of context, that most of my Irish-speaking friends had no idea what this person was trying to say with those three Irish words: “Gorm Chónaí Ábhar.” It’s beyond gibberish. It even took me a few minutes.

The sad thing is, in order to “get it,” you need to be familiar not only with the ways in which people make translation mistakes (which are legion), but also with a particularly unpleasant segment of U.S. politics.

What this person was trying to say, with this mess of a translation on his t-shirt, is “Blue Lives Matter.”

(...)

That’s right. At the end of the day, allowing for grammatical travesties (of which there are many) and horrendous word choices, what this person’s shirt says is “Black Lives Matter.”

Somehow that makes me strangely happy.

"We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided.
Differences of habit and language are nothing at all if our aims are identical and our hearts are open."
(Dumbledore in 'Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire')


[Image: blazon-color-cpcc2-av.gif]
I trust Severus Snape
(This post was last modified: 09-13-2017 02:42 PM by Serpentine.)
09-13-2017 02:36 PM
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