Guyome's log

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guyome
Green Belt
Posts: 386
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2020 1:41 pm
Languages: French (N)
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Re: Guyome's log [LAD, LAT, MAN, OCC, PER, YID]

Postby guyome » Sun Feb 14, 2021 9:00 am

It's been some time since my last post. Some things have changed and I think it would be wiser if I stopped making plans altogether.

Persian
On hold.
I feel slightly bad about that because I had made good progress so far. Stopping now is not a good idea from a purely language learning point of view but studying Persian has become more of a chore than anything else lately and that's the last thing I need at the moment. It may come back at any moment, only time will tell.

Occitan
I just finished reading Verd Paradís II by Max Roqueta (1908-2005). I really enjoyed the book. Most of the pieces in it feel very painting-like. There is very little dialogue (if any) and not that much action. What Roqueta does is give the reader something to see. Very enjoyable, in small doses at least; it felt a bit tedious if it went on for more than 5-10 pages.

Gascon made a come-back in my schedule but in a somewhat leisurely way, meaning I'm working through Lo Gascon lèu e plan (lesson 10 done).
I could go straight to reading books but reading in Gascon is still much slower than in Languedocian. I also see two main benefits from my working through the course:
- at this stage, just reading (relying on my knowledge of Languedocian) generally means I understand what I read but I don't always consciously notice the differences, meaning the vocab and the verbal forms don't really stick. That's fine if the goal is to read some short stuff and get the point, but I want to know Gascon better than that. I feel that, for me, having the grammar and vocab showed at me in a textbook setting really helps making things stick better when I meet them later in my reading
- also, reading and relying on passive Languedocian-based recognition doesn't help me that much with understanding audio, while listening again and again to the lessons in Lo Gascon lèu e plan helps.

I've also been reading Toinou : Le cri d'un enfant auvergnat, a grim description of growing up dirt poor in Auvergne in the 1890s. The author describes his childhood and early adulthood, first in the countryside and then in a small city. Not a pretty sight (poverty, violence, pedophily,...) but it makes for a good counterweight to the sometimes rosy picture of rural life Occitan literature can paint.
There are quite a few sentences in Occitan peppered through the text, and the book comes with an appendix on the Auvergnat dialect.
The book was published in the collection "Terre Humaine", which has some really great titles. Check it out if you want to read some anthropology/ethnology/first-person accounts by people who generally slip under the radar.

Latin
Read a lot. Among these:
- Busbecq's account of his first embassy to the Ottoman empire in the 1550s
- some poetry by Santeul, a 17th c. Latin poet from France. I'm not that much into poetry but Santeul got caught in the Jansenist controversy and incurred the wrath of the Jesuits for a piece he penned. Many others followed, in which he tried to placate them. That makes for an interesting war of words and made me want to dig deeper in Jansenist literature (there's a Latin translation of Pascal's Provinciales for instance).

Manchu
Lots of Manchu reading but in a rather scattered way, which means I'm only halfway through Nishan saman. There's also the fact that the manuscript is difficult to read, together with some not-standard words/spellings. All this make reading slower. Still, it is very interesting and I'll try to post something on the text and Manchu shamanism.
13 x

guyome
Green Belt
Posts: 386
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2020 1:41 pm
Languages: French (N)
x 1341

Re: Guyome's log

Postby guyome » Thu Apr 08, 2021 4:47 pm

I haven't posted in a long time but I've been spending a lot of my time on languages, just not always on the type of things I post about here.

Latin
For roughly the last ten days, I've been reading translations of Syriac works. Mainly lives of saints of holy men but also some metrical homilies by Isaac of Antioch and bits of Bar Hebraeus' Chronicon. I really like this early phase of getting familiar with an entire field. Before that, all I know about the Syriac world was scattered bits of information: some vague notions about the Mia(Mono-)physitism/Nestorianism/Chalcedon theological quarrel, a bit more about the Nestorian Church in China, and a couple of names (Ephrem the Syrian). Organising all this and gaining new knowledge about the chronology, the people, and the places feels good.

Syriac
All this reading in Latin inevitably led me to dabble in Syriac. I doubt I'll get very far before running out of steam but I enjoy it a lot so far. The alphabet is not really a problem when you already know the Hebrew/Perso-Arabic versions and Yiddish has brought me a not too shabby knowledge of many Semitic roots and grammatical features.

Occitan
Yesterday I started reading Lison, a novel written in the early 1930s by Clardeluna (aka Jeanne Barthès, 1898-1972). The book was published after her death.
I'm only 30 pages in but I like it so far.
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