Is Norwegian the easiest for an EN native speaker?

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PeterMollenburg
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Re: Is Norwegian the easiest for an EN native speaker?

Postby PeterMollenburg » Thu Jun 16, 2016 1:26 am

Tillumadoguenirurm wrote:
Soffía wrote:
Finny wrote:It was more of a thematic study, with the themes being Norwegian and things Nordic.


What, no Faroese? ;)



And here I was, my simple mind wondering why no one asked about Shetlans. :D I guess the line had to be drawn somewhere.

I don't know if anyone picked it up, but a few years back a Norwegian linguist claimed that English is really a Scandinavian dialect (edit: sorry, language even).

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2 ... 094111.htm


So if he claims it to be a Scandanavian language, I will claim it be a hybrid of a Scandanavian language with a mass of French loan words. Let's call it French Scandanavian shall we? (Norman Scandanavian will be accepted) ;)
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Re: Is Norwegian the easiest for an EN native speaker?

Postby vogeltje » Thu Jun 16, 2016 3:19 pm

English is at the end of the West Germanic continuum, and like the article said it hasn't got the verb at the end thing which German and Ducth have. I have often thought that this was a big difference, so I thought about the Scandinavian word order in such sentences. English is probably at the end of the Scandinavian continuum as well or somewhere on the Scandinavian family tree on a far away branch, between West and North Germanic.

English isn't as pure as the other languages, so it's more difficult to exactly place I think. It's definielty the most transparent Germanic langauge for the speakers of the romance languages as well, so nearer to those, but it can't be a romance langauge because the grammar, pronunciation and feeling is so totally germanic.

If everything is on a continuum, then where's the end... and also, some can be on two continua. why not.
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Re: Is Norwegian the easiest for an EN native speaker?

Postby Montmorency » Thu Jun 16, 2016 4:00 pm

Tillumadoguenirurm wrote:
Soffía wrote:
Finny wrote:It was more of a thematic study, with the themes being Norwegian and things Nordic.


What, no Faroese? ;)



And here I was, my simple mind wondering why no one asked about Shetlans. :D I guess the line had to be drawn somewhere.

I don't know if anyone picked it up, but a few years back a Norwegian linguist claimed that English is really a Scandinavian dialect (edit: sorry, language even).

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2 ... 094111.htm


I probably saw the article cited in The Guardian at the time, and it was probably discussed on HTLAL.
(One more word (among many, no doubt), not mentioned there: English "ale" from "øl" ).

It would be interesting to know when English started losing the "ge" in past-participles, and when the verb stopped going to the end.

There is some discussion of that here:
http://english.stackexchange.com/questi ... -prefix-ge
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Re: Is Norwegian the easiest for an EN native speaker?

Postby vogeltje » Thu Jun 16, 2016 5:05 pm

Montmorency wrote:It would be interesting to know when English started losing the "ge" in past-participles, and when the verb stopped going to the end.

There is some discussion of that here:
http://english.stackexchange.com/questi ... -prefix-ge


And when did it change the pronunciation? it must be like Dutch, for the spelling, for exmaple

dochter = daughter

I suppose the GH in English was like the CH in Dutch.

also

Knie = Knee

but in Dutch the K is pronounced, and in English it isn't

and

Twee = Two
in Dutch the W isn't silent.
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Re: Is Norwegian the easiest for an EN native speaker?

Postby Saim » Thu Jun 16, 2016 5:23 pm

iNate wrote:There was a time in history when other languages were in a similar situation to English (nowadays). French and Latin come to mind (speaking mostly of Europe).


Not at all. French and Latin were used by intellectual elites, people involved in diplomacy, etc. Nowadays the dominant language ideology thinks we should be thrusting English onto everyone, and they should even be fluent in it even though it's totally useless to them.

vogeltje wrote:English is probably at the end of the Scandinavian continuum as well or somewhere on the Scandinavian family tree on a far away branch, between West and North Germanic.


That's not how languages are classified. Genetic classification is about who shares a more recent common ancestor, posterior foreign influence doesn't come into it. In fact, when linguists try and figure out genetic links between languages, they try and separate out borrowings -- that's why Altaic is no longer thought to be a family.
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Re: Is Norwegian the easiest for an EN native speaker?

Postby jeff_lindqvist » Thu Jun 16, 2016 6:19 pm

vogeltje wrote:And when did it change the pronunciation? it must be like Dutch, for the spelling, for example


A long time ago - Grimm's law (wiki).

Maybe someone like Iversen will chime in and post an essay on the topic.
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Re: Is Norwegian the easiest for an EN native speaker?

Postby vogeltje » Thu Jun 16, 2016 7:15 pm

jeff_lindqvist wrote:
vogeltje wrote:And when did it change the pronunciation? it must be like Dutch, for the spelling, for example


A long time ago - Grimm's law (wiki).


thanks but I didn't find those ones.

Jeff wrote:Maybe someone like Iversen will chime in and post an essay on the topic.


haha yes. :)
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Re: Is Norwegian the easiest for an EN native speaker?

Postby Tomás » Thu Jun 16, 2016 7:34 pm

vogeltje wrote:English is at the end of the West Germanic continuum, and like the article said it hasn't got the verb at the end thing which German and Ducth have.


Because English is well and truly...never mind.
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Re: Is Norwegian the easiest for an EN native speaker?

Postby vogeltje » Thu Jun 16, 2016 8:19 pm

Saim wrote:
vogeltje wrote:English is probably at the end of the Scandinavian continuum as well or somewhere on the Scandinavian family tree on a far away branch, between West and North Germanic.


That's not how languages are classified. Genetic classification is about who shares a more recent common ancestor, posterior foreign influence doesn't come into it. In fact, when linguists try and figure out genetic links between languages, they try and separate out borrowings -- that's why Altaic is no longer thought to be a family.


Oh ok, so I am thinking of a classification based on the similarities now.
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Re: Is Norwegian the easiest for an EN native speaker?

Postby iNate » Fri Jun 17, 2016 3:51 am

Saim wrote:
iNate wrote:There was a time in history when other languages were in a similar situation to English (nowadays). French and Latin come to mind (speaking mostly of Europe).


Not at all. French and Latin were used by intellectual elites, people involved in diplomacy, etc. Nowadays the dominant language ideology thinks we should be thrusting English onto everyone, and they should even be fluent in it even though it's totally useless to them.


Latin was a lingua franca. Romance Languages derived from Vulgar Latin. Different dialects of latin spoken in different parts of the Roman Empire developed into different Romance languages over time.

French was a lingua franca a long time ago.

I'm not saying that English should or should not be the dominant language, but it is at a similar place where French was in the past, and Latin before that. I certainly don't want to get involved in a discussion regarding the "politics" of the matter.

The reason why so many people push English is because of its status in the business and scientific worlds, not because the average joe needs it to communicate with their next door neighbor in a remote village in Europe. That is not a reason to learn a language, which is why many people in the USA do not learn a language (they have no realistic need to do so).

What you're describing is exactly the point that I'm trying to make. English these days is basically what French and Latin was in those days. The Lingua Franca used in Business, Science (including the medical field), by International Elites, and people involved in diplomacy, etc.
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