6WC 6 Week Challenge - Aug 2017

Ongoing language-learning challenges, and team challenge logs (but not individual logs)
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smallwhite
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Re: 6WC 6 Week Challenge - Aug 2017

Postby smallwhite » Tue Sep 12, 2017 11:24 am

PeterMollenburg wrote:Sounds like it's time for something very different smallwhite...

I've probably had enough European languages. There're a few Asian languages that I intend to go back to, but it's better to wait till I return to Hong Kong where libraries have textbooks for Chinese-speakers to learn those. Maybe Vietnamese. I'll go check it out now. Thanks!
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Josquin
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Re: 6WC 6 Week Challenge - Aug 2017

Postby Josquin » Tue Sep 12, 2017 11:47 am

smallwhite wrote:I'm really sick of the present perfect tense being AGAIN a compound tense and AGAIN formed by "have + past participle", that that "have" is AGAIN same as the "have" in "I have a dog", that the past perfect tense is AGAIN formed by shifting the "have" one tense back thus "had + past participle", that there are AGAIN present and past perfect tenses to begin with, that the 6 persons are AGAIN the same 6 persons, that formal you AGAIN equals plural you, that there is AGAIN this tu/vous thing to begin with and that it is AGAIN expressed through conjugation... the only new thing about verbs is there's no infinitive, thus "she likes to sings", but that's hardly a challenge because it's more "she likes that she sings" which is the same as "I am sure I am fine. I expected something more exotic.

Why not try Irish? There's no perfect tense at all, only a periphrastic construction with "I'm after doing...", which is rare to be honest. What's more, there is no verb "to have" at all! If you have things, they "are at you". Needless to say there's no pluperfect, but instead a habitual past that digresses from the regular past tense. Okay, we do have the six Indo-European persons, but there's no T-V distinction. You say "tú" to everybody, which is nice.

What's more, there is no verb for to know, instead "its knowledge is at you". There are no infinitives, only verbal nouns, and yes, the verb comes first in the sentence, which boggles the word order quite a bit. Oh, and most important of all, there are no words for "yes" and "no". Instead, you repeat the verb of the question in either affirmative or negative form. That's quite an exercise, especially for irregular verbs. Then, there are initial mutations and yes, declension often only consists of palatalizing a sound. Did I say there are palatalized and normal consonants in Irish? I didn't? Now, there you go...

Other than that, you could always learn Finnish or Hungarian. Makes for quite a nice change as well!
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Ἄνδρα μοι ἔννεπε, Μοῦσα, πολύτροπον, ὃς μάλα πολλὰ
πλάγχθη, ἐπεὶ Τροίης ἱερὸν πτολίεθρον ἔπερσε·
(Homer: Odyssey, ll. 1-2)

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Re: 6WC 6 Week Challenge - Aug 2017

Postby Serpent » Tue Sep 12, 2017 11:49 am

Greek has its own group within the Indo-European family but it's still part of it, unlike Basque, Finnish etc.
Irish and Breton are in the Celtic branch.
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Re: 6WC 6 Week Challenge - Aug 2017

Postby smallwhite » Wed Sep 13, 2017 1:22 am

Thanks for the information and suggestions!

Irish - much of what Josquin wrote is unfortunately not new to me, eg. there is no Yes/No in my mother tongue either. But Josquin has made me curious how other members go about learning Irish, so I'll be going through some logs.

Finnish or Hungarian - I learned some Finnish back when Brun Ugle first started the Assimil Finnish study group, and I do like Finnish, so it is still a candidate. Hungarian was one of the candidates that lost to Greek when I had to choose in April, but

Vietnamese - which was the other candidate that lost, wins this time! It has some cognates with Chinese, which should help me regain sanity after having just crammed 5700 Greek words. I noticed that it's Category IV with asterisk per FSI, and I wonder how an analytic/isolating language written in Latin script can be that hard. Let's find out!
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