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Re: French

From:Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets <>
Date:Friday, January 23, 2009, 11:33
2009/1/22 Ina van der Vegt <gijsstrider@...>

> When we go to spoken, however, High German becomes much more > comprehensible while the Norse-Germanic language lose > comprehensibility. Even so, the Norse-Germanic languages still sound > more familiar, even when I don't understand them it sounds like I > should. High German that's not understood is immediately categorized > as foreign language stuff, not so with the Norse-Germanic parts I > don't understand, where my mind spends much more time trying to figure > out what it means, because it sounds like I should know. >
I, a non-native but nearly fluent Dutch speaker of French origin (I say "nearly" because I still can't get all my common gender and neuter nouns right ;) ), will never forget the time I was watching the news, and a woman was interviewed on the Dutch TV who spoke in a Dutch dialect so weird I could not make out what she said without the subtitles (Dutch TV tends to subtitle people speaking in dialects, even when those are relatively easy to understand). Still, I always felt at the edge of understanding, and thus thought it was probably just a difficult dialect (there are enough of those here in the Netherlands). So when I asked my husband which Dutch dialect the woman was speaking, imagine my surprise when he replied that she was speaking Swedish! So I'm very happy to hear that at least one native speaker has a similar experience. My husband (native Dutch speaker) tells me that he understands the basics of Swedish, although he never studied it. He has more difficulty with Danish and Norwegian, which sound much more foreign to him. I tend to agree, although I have a Danish colleague, and when he is speaking Danish to another Danish colleague it always takes me a while before I recognise that he is not speaking Dutch. The stød does help (his stød is a strong creaky voice, which makes his speech very un-Dutch-like). -- Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets.


Ina van der Vegt <gijsstrider@...>
Benct Philip Jonsson <bpj@...>