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Which Language Would You Like To Learn?


3DOP

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Alas, I speak only one language. Much is potentially lost in translation. You keep the poetry and lose the knowledge or the other way around. For those of you English speakers who like G.K. Chesterton, can you imagine trying to translate his work? His prose is poetry.

 

If you could take a "language pill" that would enable you to become instantly fluent in any language, which would it be? If you are so inclined, don't hesitate to share why.

 

1) Russian---It seems to me like much of the world's truly greatest, most thought provoking literature is in that language. Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, and Solzenhitsyn are followed by many brilliant authors less well known by most in the West.

 

2) Latin---It is the liturgical language of the Roman Church. Most of the Western Fathers also wrote in Latin. Many of the loveliest hymns of my faith are in Latin. I once heard on our classical music station the beautiful Panis Angelicus (Bread of Angels) by St. Thos. Aquinas. Guess who the singers were? The Mormon Tabernacle Choir! Beautifully done too.

 

3) French---I simply enjoy hearing the spoken word. It seems to me to combine the guttural strength of German with a gracefully elegant flow of the Mediterranean tongues.

 

4) Everything else from East to West! I also understand that there are variations in many national tongues. There is classical Greek, Koine Greek, and modern Greek. The pill is good for all changes in the older languages as well as dialects. You would be a master at understanding the nuances of all Chinese tongues. Shoot, I need that English pill. The Canterbury Tales!

 

Also, for those who speak multiple languages, share if you will why you learned and whether it has been continuously rewarding. I suppose many former missionaries learned a language for that reason. To share their testimonies. Have you retained it? (The language not the testimony). Did you gain a greater appreciation for the culture of the people? Lastly, would you really want a pill? Could it be argued that the joy is in the journey?

 

Thanks,

 

3DOP

Edited by 3DOP
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My brother learned Italian to serve as a missionary in the then-Italy Catania mission, and he has retained it (both the language and the testimony).  (Retention has been helped by the fact that he married a native Italian).  Many people, when they discover that I know Spanish (though I'm something short of fluent, although I do speak it quite well) assume that I learned it as a missionary.  I tell them that the irony is that I served in San Diego, California  (If it would come in handy anywhere in the U.S. San Diego is certainly one such place) ... but that I was English-speaking, and learned Spanish afterward.  My biggest frustration is that I have never had an extended immersion experience, as missionaries do: If I ever get the chance, I hope to remedy that.

 

The interesting thing is that I have used Spanish to "chew the fat," to "shoot the breeze," to platicar (chat), to introduce myself and tell a new Spanish-speaking acquaintance about me and to learn more about him or her, but it had never "saved my bacon" ... until recently.  Inexplicably, a segment of a "guided tour" my family and I took in Spain was left "guideless" in Valencia: we were given an excellent map and excellent instructions, and told to rendezvous at El Hotel Victoria at a certain hour ... whereupon we promptly got lost.  But not to fear; we eventually located other members of our group ... who were also lost. :D  While I found the Spanish people generally to be friendly, helpful, and accommodating, those qualities were not in evidence among several Valencians I approached for help.  Finally, a young gentleman responded favorably to my query, "¿Sabe donde queda el Hotel Victória?"  ("Do you know where the Hotel Victoria is?") Tiene que regresar a la fuente y doblar a la izquiérda. ("He says we have to go back to the fountain and turn left.")

 

What a relief to know that, but for my (perhaps inadequate-in-many-ways) Spanish, we might still be wandering the streets of Valencia to this day! :D  (And yes, my testimony remains intact. ;))

 

P.S.:  Why did I learn Spanish?  I figured I couldn't go wrong if I learned the second-most-commonly-spoken language in the United States. :)

 

P.P.S.: What language would I like to learn?  Italian, I guess.  (I figure if I can't beat 'em, I might as well join 'em!) 

Edited by Kenngo1969
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Alas, I speak only one language. Much is potentially lost in translation. You keep the poetry and lose the knowledge or the other way around. For those of you English speakers who like G.K. Chesterton, can you imagine trying to translate his work? His prose is poetry.

If you could take a "language pill" that would enable you to become instantly fluent in any language, which would it be? If you are so inclined, don't hesitate to share why.

1) Russian---It seems to me like much of the world's truly greatest, most thought provoking literature is in that language. Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, and Solzenhitsyn are followed by many brilliant authors less well known by most in the West.

2) Latin---It is the liturgical language of the Roman Church. Most of the Western Fathers also wrote in Latin. Many of the loveliest hymns of my faith are in Latin. I once heard on our classical music station the beautiful Panis Angelicus (Bread of Angels) by St. Thos. Aquinas. Guess who the singers were? The Mormon Tabernacle Choir! Beautifully done too.

3) French---I simply enjoy hearing the spoken word. It seems to me to combine the guttural strength of German with a gracefully elegant flow of the Mediterranean tongues.

4) Everything else from East to West! I also understand that there are variations in many national tongues. There is classical Greek, Koine Greek, and modern Greek. The pill is good for all changes in the older languages as well as dialects. You would be a master at understanding the nuances of all Chinese tongues. Shoot, I need that English pill. The Canterbury Tales!

Also, for those who speak multiple languages, share if you will why you learned and whether it has been continuously rewarding. I suppose many former missionaries learned a language for that reason. To share their testimonies. Have you retained it? (The language not the testimony). Did you gain a greater appreciation for the culture of the people? Lastly, would you really want a pill? Could it be argued that the joy is in the journey?

Thanks,

3DOP

I would like to relearn German as I hope to visit there again one day, this time with a uniform and a gun. When I was there is was a decided country, never been in East Germany except spying on the boarder fortification, I was in Bad Herfeld on the broader for 4 years. Joined the Church there, sealing in Swiss Temple to my wife and two of my babies then. It was a great time for my family to grow up a bit. Edited by Bill “Papa” Lee
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Latin, because I am Catholic and I would love to be able to speak the language of the Church. If I had a second choice it would be Spanish just because of the migration of hispanic people into my area. I would love to be able to speak to them and form friendships.

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I would like to relearn German as I hope to visit there again one day, this time with a uniform and a gun. When I was there is was a decided country, never been in East Germany except spying on the boarder fortification, I was in Bad Herfeld on the broader for 4 years. Joined the Church there, sealing in Swiss Temple to my wife and two of my babies then. It was a great time for my family to grow up a bit.

 

Thank you for sharing a bit of your family history.

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I served my mission in recife, Brazil. I learned Portuguese (Brazilian obvously) from that experience. I wanted to study Portuguese further after my mission and so I also took up mainly becase I always wanted to study it and because in the United States "everybody" speaks Spanish. ;) so today I speak English, Spanish, and Portuguese. I'd love o learn Italian and Latin.

Edited by Darren10
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I served my mission in recife, Brazil. I learned Portuguese (Brazilian obvously) from that experience. I wanted to study Portuguese further after my mission and so I also took up mainly becase I always wanted to study it and because in the United States "everybody" speaks Spanish. ;) so today I speak English, Spanish, and Portuguese. I'd love o learn Italian and Latin.

 

Felicitaciones que habla el idioma celestial.  (I congratulate you that you speak The Celestial Language [the mods don't like it when we start speakin' fereign languages without translatin'.  They cain't tell if we're insultin' each other er not!] ;):D)

Edited by Kenngo1969
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I'd love to learn Spanish because my son in law is from Mexico.  I love to listen to it spoken. I have several nieces and nephews that went on Spanish speaking missions.  They love to talk to him but afterwards he'll say that they speak it so perfectly he doesn't always understand, so I guess they speak the proper way, and he's not use to listening to it that way.  I guess it's like everywhere you go with the different dialects. 

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English (more better)

Japanese (much better than I do)

Hebrew (much much better than I think I do)

Spanish (better than my father who taught all the WRONG things to say)

German (because I am and never took the time to learn it)

NEVER, but NEVER Russian because I promised my Russian language professor I would never speak Russian again in exchange for a C (If I did continue he would have flunked me)

Edited by Ron Beron
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English (more better)

 

That should be, "more betterer." ;)

 

 

 

...NEVER, but NEVER Russian because I promised my Russian language professor I would never speak Russian again in exchange for a C (If I did continue he would have flunked me) Ken Sez: :rofl:
Edited by Kenngo1969
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I have a hard enough time with American English. :lol:

Why?  It ain't hard! :D:rofl:

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My mission language is German, which I still speak fluently, though not perhaps as fluently as I used to.  Of course my wife is from Germany, so that helps, but at home we are almost exclusively English speaking.

 

I studied Latin for two years in High School and did fairly well at it (A average! Yikes) but they didn't teach it to speak, so I can't speak it.  It would be nice to be able to speak it, but since I am not a Catholic (my second favorite Church, btw) I have less motivation to learn it.

 

I am going to learn Spanish next.  I can understand some, can read some, but I want to get as good with Spanish as with German.  After Spanish I am not sure, perhaps Russian.  Ultimately I would like to be able to speak English, German, Spanish, Russian, French and Mandarin.  Also possibly Arabic.  Don't know how far I will get, but I start pushing on Spanish on September 1.  Got a Pimsleur Spanish course on CD, that I have transferred to my Windows Phone, so I'm raring to go.  I took Spanish once in Junior High School, so I have a small basis for it.

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My mission language is German, which I still speak fluently, though not perhaps as fluently as I used to.  Of course my wife is from Germany, so that helps, but at home we are almost exclusively English speaking.

 

I studied Latin for two years in High School and did fairly well at it (A average! Yikes) but they didn't teach it to speak, so I can't speak it.  It would be nice to be able to speak it, but since I am not a Catholic (my second favorite Church, btw) I have less motivation to learn it.

 

I am going to learn Spanish next.  I can understand some, can read some, but I want to get as good with Spanish as with German.  After Spanish I am not sure, perhaps Russian.  Ultimately I would like to be able to speak English, German, Spanish, Russian, French and Mandarin.  Also possibly Arabic.  Don't know how far I will get, but I start pushing on Spanish on September 1.  Got a Pimsleur Spanish course on CD, that I have transferred to my Windows Phone, so I'm raring to go.  I took Spanish once in Junior High School, so I have a small basis for it.

 

Stargazer, Hi.

 

You have been observing the heavens since 1951. Unless you are speaking of the pre-existence, indicates that you are intending to learn a language at an age, when speaking for myself, memory functions are on the wane. But encourage me. Have you successfully used this course before? If not, I am not being skeptical. I wonder if it is the kind of thing one could "study" at least to an extent while driving? Anyway, that's great about your German and having retained it. Thanks for the reply and best of luck with all your future efforts.

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Latin, Coptic, Aramaic, Hebrew, German, Greek and the Volgadonic language.

 

Heh. I think I see a theme here. Did you mean to leave out Chaldean? I was thinking that is thought to be the language of Daniel during the Captivity, although I don't suppose we have any texts.

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I would love to "re-learn" French, my mission language. I still speak it enough to toss out one-liners and some common phrases, but would love to get back to where it is my second language, like it was in 1979.

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