Foreign Languages

Everything except LibriVox (yes, this is where knitting gets discussed. Now includes non-LV Volunteers Wanted projects)
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Anna Maria
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Joined: June 26th, 2006, 9:53 am
Location: san francisco

Post by Anna Maria » July 6th, 2006, 2:04 pm

I decided to relax a bit, instead of trying to understand how to record, how to translate in wiki, how to save and send a file, etc. and looked in the off-topic thread - sort of like switching channels from PBS to a Fox sitcom. :)
Anyway, I grew up with an American parent and an Italian one, who always spoke their own language to each other and to us, and we always spoke to the particular parent in his/her language.
I moved a few times from the US to Italy and back before and during elementary school, then went to Italy to finish 5th grade and stayed (mostly) in Italian schools until the end of a five-year high school there. Then back to the US for college, then back to Italy for a few years, then back to the US where I have been working with Italians for almost 25 years! Oh my God! did I say that?
So I am bi-lingual, which means that I am regularly unsure in both...
I recently finished translating the Librivox opening pages into Italian, hope it is decent, and I am recording some Divine Comedy. Even though we studied it in Italian high school for 3 years, I have to study it all over again, so that I can understand what I am reading.
I know I should have started with one chapter, but that's what it actually is, except that each of Alessia's chapters are 5 "canti" ! :wink:
Sorry this is so long, but believe me, it's the condensed version :)

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Post by kri » July 6th, 2006, 5:22 pm

Anna Maria wrote: So I am bi-lingual, which means that I am regularly unsure in both...

Wow, I never would have thought it'd feel that way. Must be frustrating sometimes :) and liberating too I imagine.

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Location: Australia

Post by opheliad » July 20th, 2006, 5:55 pm

I am a native English speaker, with a love of languages in general.

I studied French at school, and am continuing my studies in snippets of spare time now I'm an old lady of nearly 40 :wink:

I love reading aloud in French, but really don't know how it sounds to a native ear. If anyone who has french as their mother tongue would like to give a brief critique, I am very interested to know what accent I have, whether it is difficult or awkward to listen to, and whether my french flows and is easy enough to understand. I can take (and I welcome) the criticism as long as it's kind :D and would love to know how to improve my reading of french :) :)

Here's a sample:
Wherefore, be not weary in well-doing, for ye are laying the foundation of a great work. And out of small things proceedeth that which is great.

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Post by a.r.dobbs » July 20th, 2006, 9:09 pm

I think you might really really enjoy the Lupin books, which are a great fun read, I hear.

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Post by stella » July 21st, 2006, 1:50 am

Ok, I'm Swiss, born and bred - including the usual language twists, with a rather strange German dialect as a mother tongue (standard German is the official language in schools though). The region where I grew up was bilingual so I learned French more or less successfully for 12 years. It wasn't until grammar school that I was introduced to English and my skills are hence far lower than I'd wished them to be (but I was told on several occassions that I speak well... which I took as flattering beyond limits ;)). In high school, I had one year of Italian as well but that's merely enough to order dinner. I gave Japanese a shot some time ago but had to give it up again due to lack of time... it's still revolving in my head though and I'll give it another try as soon as I have the time.

I'm living in Denmark with my bf of soon three years and speak Danish everydady - in fact, I think it is kind of replacing every other language I've ever learned before. :roll: I can read Norwegian and Swedish as well but you don't want to hear me say anything in those, trust me. :lol:

Well, that's it.

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Post by kri » July 21st, 2006, 7:41 am

Wow, that's quite the smattering of languages Stella. I'm always jealous of people who've got more than 2 languages in some form or another in their head.

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Location: Bensalem PA USA

Post by sbb4677forever » August 5th, 2006, 5:07 am

Okay, i took two years of Spanish in High school but don't remember didly from what I learned. But I'm learning Xhosa and Zulu, oh god.
"You are either alive and proud or you are dead, and when your dead you don't care anyway. and your method of death can in itself be a politicizing thing." Stephen Biko

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Joined: July 30th, 2006, 5:01 am
Location: Beál feirste, Ireland

Post by Laura » August 10th, 2006, 4:19 am

I am a native English speaker. If I had lived where I was born 150 years ago I would probably not be able to speak a word of English and speak only Irish... strange...

after the famine Irish dropped significantly. All those who spoke Irish were the poor people and they either died or immigrated. Irish has had a revival over the past 50 years and now apparently 40% of people living in Ireland (both north and south) speak it fluently.

I can probably muster a decent conversation. I went to English medium schools (where I live there a few Irish-medium schools) and therefore never got the joy of learning Irish at a young age. I try and make up for it now, its annoying to think that I can't speak the native language of my country.

In school I learnt French from age 6, and spanish from age 11. I stopped learning French when I was 13 just because it wouldn't fit in the school timetable. I'm 16 and I'm still learning Spanish.. at a few classes. I'm continuing Spanish (hopefully) for the next 2 years and will hopefully major in it at college. I think languages are fabulous. Not enough people are fluent in 2+ languages, when as children they can learn it quickly.

Hopefully I'll be a bit more fluent in Irish and Spanish and someday i'd love to regurgitate my French again. =]

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Post by thistlechick » August 18th, 2006, 3:34 pm

I have quite a few French words to pronounce in the story I'm reading in King in Yellow and while I took enough French classes to be dangerous, I went looking for an online pronunciation resource and found this text-to-speech utility that speaks in several languages:

I'll probably need to take the file that it outputs and import it into audacity and apply the speed feature to it to slow it down enough for me to follow it though =)
~ Betsie
Multiple projects lead to multiple successes!

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Joined: September 7th, 2006, 2:28 pm
Location: Paris - France

Post by Faris » September 10th, 2006, 4:39 am


my native language is Arabic, and i'm fluent in france since i speak i since 3years old, and i'm now living in France.
I speak english started learning it 10 years ago.
I'm also studing japenese for 5 years now. I can handle normale conversation, but i ned to gather vocabulary. Reading it is a hole different story. I'm trying to learn. If you have a secret method... ?

Ijust started learning german and playing aroud mandarin.

Here are some links for learning languages,2144,1719252,00.html

If you have book projects in arabic french or japanese please contact me

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Location: Thunder Bay Ontario, Canada

Post by Starlite » September 10th, 2006, 4:46 am

Faris you may be interested in earthcalling's site here:

"Reasonable people adapt themselves to the world. Unreasonable
people attempt to adapt the world to themselves. All progress,
therefore, depends on unreasonable people." George Bernard Shaw

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Location: Paris - France

Post by Faris » September 10th, 2006, 9:19 am


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Location: Denmark

Post by Rutmik » March 15th, 2007, 1:30 pm

In all modesty in this group of so much talent:

I am Danish, I am fluent in English and Swedish.

My German is comprehensible. I can make myself understood.

I did a year of French in 1983, and can grasp some of it still, I got a good grade for pronounciation.

I have a degree in Russian, though I never got to speak it properly.

I read and understand Norwegian by way of its similarity to Danish and Swedish, and, due to having studied Latin, I grasp some Spanish, Italian and Portuguese.

It actually sounds a lot when you put it all together.... :shock: :oops:

Lady Maria
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Joined: February 10th, 2007, 4:48 pm

Post by Lady Maria » March 16th, 2007, 6:15 am

I'm a native French speaker.
Last edited by Lady Maria on November 12th, 2012, 6:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Joined: August 24th, 2007, 5:23 pm
Location: China

Post by hamihaha » August 25th, 2007, 4:20 pm

I speak some English, German, and now I'm learning Chinese... not easy but worth it!

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