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Old February 20th, 2017, 09:57 PM   #35661
ChrisZwolle
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It depends on what you're used to and how often you are exposed to such a language. French names are also considerably different in pronounciation than text. Bordeaux or Grenoble being good examples.

Danish written language looks quite familiar if you know Dutch, German and English, but I can't understand anything when spoken.
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Old February 20th, 2017, 10:05 PM   #35662
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
It depends on what you're used to and how often you are exposed to such a language. French names are also considerably different in pronounciation than text. Bordeaux or Grenoble being good examples.

Danish written language looks quite familiar if you know Dutch, German and English, but I can't understand anything when spoken.
The same goes for Dutch. Looks like German with typos, but the pronunciation is absolutely different.
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Old February 20th, 2017, 10:51 PM   #35663
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For Romance-languages speaking people who think Dutch city names are right next to Finnish and Basque in the list of strange ones

Except that B, C, F, Q, W, X and Z are not a part of the Finnish alphabet. But the long wovels are very common: Espoo, Vantaa, Sipoo, Uusikaarlepyy, Hyvinkää, Akaa, Vaasa, Porvoo, Loviisa, Kajaani, Kuusamo, Kyyjärvi, Viitasaari, Laukaa, Hämeenkyrö, Kitee, etc. And Ii, of course.
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Old February 20th, 2017, 11:37 PM   #35664
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There is another Pula in Sardinia.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pula,_Sardinia

BTW, I wonder if Romanian tourists do buy these souvenirs...

I actually bought a T-shirt from the Pula souvenir shop, but not one with "I heart Pula" obviously. Yet, I remember the shop lady recommending us souvenirs with "I heart Pula"
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Old February 21st, 2017, 12:13 PM   #35665
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
It depends on what you're used to and how often you are exposed to such a language. French names are also considerably different in pronounciation than text. Bordeaux or Grenoble being good examples.

Danish written language looks quite familiar if you know Dutch, German and English, but I can't understand anything when spoken.
How they are different? Those two names are pronunced exactly how they should be...
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Old February 21st, 2017, 12:44 PM   #35666
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How they are different? Those two names are pronunced exactly how they should be...
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Old February 21st, 2017, 12:55 PM   #35667
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Forest Machine Rodeo

Finnish madness.

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Old February 21st, 2017, 01:24 PM   #35668
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How they are different? Those two names are pronunced exactly how they should be...
An Austrian colleague of mine once said: German is the easiest language in the world, because you pronounce the words exactly how they are written.

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Old February 21st, 2017, 01:53 PM   #35669
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An Austrian colleague of mine once said: German is the easiest language in the world, because you pronounce the words exactly how they are written.
Well... That is not quite true. The mapping of the written language to the pronunciation is unambiguous. The applies to French, too, but not to English. There is no ghoti effect in German.

The rules of French are quite simple. Anyone knowing the basics of the language, knows how to pronounce Bordeaux, Montreux, or Colombey les Deux Eglises.
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Old February 21st, 2017, 02:00 PM   #35670
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An Austrian colleague of mine once said: German is the easiest language in the world, because you pronounce the words exactly how they are written.

Okay

But I don't understand, that's just french pronounciation, for the two examples you told, you pronounce them exactly how the french pronounciation rules are, so you are telling those two cities names like you would say any french word with the same building...

I mean it's not tricky at a level that even french people sometimes don't know how to pronounce it.

I have a great example for that, a french city close from where I was born and lived : Dole, I don't know how to explain it, but the city name is pronounced with a "flat" "o" but most of the time, those who don't know the city pronounce it with a "ō" giving a big intonation to the ō which change completly the pronouciation. It's funny when it happens to some parisian TV presenters who talk about the city but don't actualy know how to pronounce it correctly...

A better example is maybe "Laon", it is actualy pronounced like the word "lent", but lots of frenchs are mistakenly pronouncing it like "la-on".
I'm remembering it very well because one time I was in a supermarket in this city while traveling, when I called someone and told on the phone that I was at "la-on" and I got immediatly corrected by a stranger that was near me...
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Old February 21st, 2017, 02:18 PM   #35671
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Originally Posted by MattiG View Post
Well... That is not quite true. The mapping of the written language to the pronunciation is unambiguous. The applies to French, too, but not to English. There is no ghoti effect in German.

The rules of French are quite simple. Anyone knowing the basics of the language, knows how to pronounce Bordeaux, Montreux, or Colombey les Deux Eglises.
Italian and German and, to a lesser extent, Spanish are unambiguous in writing. Should an Italian encounter a word he never saw written, he would know how to pronounce it, and vice versa (he can write down an unkown word spoken out loud). That's simply not true in English or French. Paris and pastis should rhyme, but they don't.
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Old February 21st, 2017, 02:49 PM   #35672
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Italian and German and, to a lesser extent, Spanish are unambiguous in writing. Should an Italian encounter a word he never saw written, he would know how to pronounce it, and vice versa (he can write down an unkown word spoken out loud).
The same applies to Finnish. In fact, Finnish is unambigous in both directions at the character level, with some exceptions: One phoneme maps to one written letter. The words "tuli", "tulin", "tuuli", "tulli" all have a different meaning. The pronunciation can be derived from the written text and vice versa.
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Old February 21st, 2017, 02:56 PM   #35673
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Originally Posted by winnipeg View Post
But I don't understand, that's just french pronounciation, for the two examples you told, you pronounce them exactly how the french pronounciation rules are, so you are telling those two cities names like you would say any french word with the same building...
Once upon a time, the wine culture in Finland was ...hmm... narrow. One popular product was a bulk white wine named simply Bordeaux Blanc. It got a widely known nickname Porvoon Lankku because of the similarity of the pronunciation of two Finnish words: Porvoo is a town east of Helsinki and "lankku" is a wooden plank.
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Old February 21st, 2017, 04:13 PM   #35674
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Once upon a time, the wine culture in Finland was ...hmm... narrow. One popular product was a bulk white wine named simply Bordeaux Blanc. It got a widely known nickname Porvoon Lankku because of the similarity of the pronunciation of two Finnish words: Porvoo is a town east of Helsinki and "lankku" is a wooden plank.
Funny!!
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Old February 21st, 2017, 04:26 PM   #35675
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They say you are reasonably fluent in English if you know the pronunciation, meaning and uses of though, trough, thorough, tough, through, throughout and throughput... Or so said one of my English teachers.
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Old February 21st, 2017, 04:30 PM   #35676
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In semi-related news, it is almost official now that I will move to Bergen, Norway in August. I'm excited about the move somehow, yet I'd really like to have been able to find the right work opportunity in Netherlands, but there weren't just attractive positions/openings at the moment at the right places, and a 220% bigger after-tax salary sealed the deal. I think I will like Norway, yet I really like the way life goes around in the Netherlands and would still like to move back after my 5-year contract in Bergen. I got used having so many things that interest me to do in a 250km radius. Let's see how it goes. I can't really complain when some of my cousins or friends are having much harder times on the job ladder.

When you move past age 30, things are not so simple any longer :S
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Old February 21st, 2017, 04:40 PM   #35677
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Spanish and Italian are indeed unambiguous, and Spanish even have the inverted exclamation and question marks, helping you to definitively know how to read aloud. I think all Romance languages should have that feature, actually.

The thing about Spanish are the very different accents. Italian* has more standardized pronunciation, Ticino purists aside.

*I'm not referring to regional ill-defined regional dialects. I actually think too much language variety with somehow restricted academic standardization in the Italian peninsula in early 18th Century gave standardized Italian the push it needed to be a well organized grammatical canon, comparing to the more contentious process of standardizing castillian over other Iberian languages, or the French take-over on Occitan.
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Old February 21st, 2017, 04:50 PM   #35678
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How they are different? Those two names are pronunced exactly how they should be...
The point being that you need to know how they are pronounced. For example the pronounciation of Bordeaux is bɔʁdo, which is quite different from how it is spelled (in particular the -eaux). Grenoble is mentioned on the French-English 107.7 FM traffic information and is pronounced very different from what the French call it.

French is indeed fairly consistent. Most Dutch who know some basic French can pronounce French names fairly accurate (apart from accent of course).
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Old February 21st, 2017, 06:02 PM   #35679
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I think Polish, Hungarian, and Welsh names are the most difficult in Europe to spell and pronounce.
Hungarian is not difficult to pronounce at all. it has very clear rules or pronounciation and accenting, i'd say the clearest in the Europe.
problems with Hungarian are:
1. words can be very long (what makes it very similar to German)
2. concept of the language is completely different from most other European languages. no genders, no prepostitions, 20+ cases, weird rules in composing the sentences... to average European learning Hungarian is like learning Japanese, just in Latin alphabet
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Old February 21st, 2017, 06:38 PM   #35680
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That is the point. When you understand the grammer, everything becoms obvius and logical
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