History UsefulNotes / GrammarInForeignLanguages

11th Feb '16 2:31:40 AM anty21
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* Have wildly different syntax (word order). English generally places the subject of a sentence first, the verb second, and the object last, a very common word order. However, in just as many languages, the subject is placed first, the object second, and the verb last. A minority of languages even do things like place the verb or the object first, the subject last, or any other possible combination. Some languages, usually those that are highly inflected, don't even have a hard and fast word order at all. Latin, for instance, generally prefers SOV outside of poetry, but is so inflected that the word order can be changed without changing the meaning of the sentence. The old forms of Semitic languages (like Classical Arabic and Biblical Hebrew) historically preferred VSO, but left SVO as an option because of their inflection--the latter of which became dominant in the contemporary colloquial forms. German can be a word order cluster fuck. On paper, it's SVO. That is true, but questions are VSO. The rest typically go SOV with a split predicate, part of the action, with the main verb turned into an infinitive and then crammed in at the end, with any auxiliary verbs being put into the first person singular form and placed after that. It's also considered a V2, language, which means that if a sentence begins with an adverbial (or even an object, for stylistic effect), the verb must go second, even when that means the subject comes after. And Japanese... Japanese word order has its own PAGE on TheOtherWiki.

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* Have wildly different syntax (word order). English generally places the subject of a sentence first, the verb second, and the object last, a very common word order. However, in just as many languages, the subject is placed first, the object second, and the verb last. A minority of languages even do things like place the verb or the object first, the subject last, or any other possible combination. Some languages, usually those that are highly inflected, don't even have a hard and fast word order at all. Latin, for instance, generally prefers SOV outside of poetry, but is so inflected that the word order can be changed without changing the meaning of the sentence. The old forms of Semitic languages (like Classical Arabic and Biblical Hebrew) historically preferred VSO, but left SVO as an option because of their inflection--the latter of which became dominant in the contemporary colloquial forms. German can be a word order cluster fuck. On paper, it's SVO. That is true, but questions are VSO. The rest typically go SOV with a split predicate, part of the action, with the main verb turned into an infinitive and then crammed in at the end, with any auxiliary verbs being put into the first person singular form and placed after that. It's also considered a V2, V2 language, which means that if a sentence begins with an adverbial (or even an object, for stylistic effect), the verb must go second, even when that means the subject comes after. And Japanese... Japanese word order has its own PAGE on TheOtherWiki.
10th Feb '16 12:29:57 PM anty21
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* Have wildly different syntax (word order). English generally places the subject of a sentence first, the verb second, and the object last, a very common word order. However, in just as many languages, the subject is placed first, the object second, and the verb last. A minority of languages even do things like place the verb or the object first, the subject last, or any other possible combination. Some languages, usually those that are highly inflected, don't even have a hard and fast word order at all. Latin, for instance, generally prefers SOV outside of poetry, but is so inflected that the word order can be changed without changing the meaning of the sentence. The old forms of Semitic languages (like Classical Arabic and Biblical Hebrew) historically preferred VSO, but left SVO as an option because of their inflection--the latter of which became dominant in the contemporary colloquial forms. German can be a word order cluster fuck. On paper, it's SVO. That is true, but questions are VSO. The rest typically go SOV with a split predicate, part of the action, with the main verb turned into an infinitive and then crammed in at the end, with any auxiliary verbs being put into the first person singular form and placed after that. It's also considered a V2, language, which means that if a sentence begins with an adverbial, the verb must go second, even when that means the subject comes after. And Japanese... Japanese word order has its own PAGE on TheOtherWiki.

to:

* Have wildly different syntax (word order). English generally places the subject of a sentence first, the verb second, and the object last, a very common word order. However, in just as many languages, the subject is placed first, the object second, and the verb last. A minority of languages even do things like place the verb or the object first, the subject last, or any other possible combination. Some languages, usually those that are highly inflected, don't even have a hard and fast word order at all. Latin, for instance, generally prefers SOV outside of poetry, but is so inflected that the word order can be changed without changing the meaning of the sentence. The old forms of Semitic languages (like Classical Arabic and Biblical Hebrew) historically preferred VSO, but left SVO as an option because of their inflection--the latter of which became dominant in the contemporary colloquial forms. German can be a word order cluster fuck. On paper, it's SVO. That is true, but questions are VSO. The rest typically go SOV with a split predicate, part of the action, with the main verb turned into an infinitive and then crammed in at the end, with any auxiliary verbs being put into the first person singular form and placed after that. It's also considered a V2, language, which means that if a sentence begins with an adverbial, adverbial (or even an object, for stylistic effect), the verb must go second, even when that means the subject comes after. And Japanese... Japanese word order has its own PAGE on TheOtherWiki.
10th Feb '16 12:26:30 PM anty21
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* Have wildly different syntax (word order). English generally places the subject of a sentence first, the verb second, and the object last, a very common word order. However, in just as many languages, the subject is placed first, the object second, and the verb last. A minority of languages even do things like place the verb or the object first, the subject last, or any other possible combination. Some languages, usually those that are highly inflected, don't even have a hard and fast word order at all. Latin, for instance, generally prefers SOV outside of poetry, but is so inflected that the word order can be changed without changing the meaning of the sentence. The old forms of Semitic languages (like Classical Arabic and Biblical Hebrew) historically preferred VSO, but left SVO as an option because of their inflection--the latter of which became dominant in the contemporary colloquial forms. German can be a word order cluster fuck. On paper, it's SVO. That is true, but questions are VSO. The rest typically go SOV with a split predicate, part of the action, with the main verb turned into an infinitive and then cramemd in at the end, with any auxiliary verbs being put into the first person singular form and placed after that. And Japanese... Japanese word order has its own PAGE on TheOtherWiki.

to:

* Have wildly different syntax (word order). English generally places the subject of a sentence first, the verb second, and the object last, a very common word order. However, in just as many languages, the subject is placed first, the object second, and the verb last. A minority of languages even do things like place the verb or the object first, the subject last, or any other possible combination. Some languages, usually those that are highly inflected, don't even have a hard and fast word order at all. Latin, for instance, generally prefers SOV outside of poetry, but is so inflected that the word order can be changed without changing the meaning of the sentence. The old forms of Semitic languages (like Classical Arabic and Biblical Hebrew) historically preferred VSO, but left SVO as an option because of their inflection--the latter of which became dominant in the contemporary colloquial forms. German can be a word order cluster fuck. On paper, it's SVO. That is true, but questions are VSO. The rest typically go SOV with a split predicate, part of the action, with the main verb turned into an infinitive and then cramemd crammed in at the end, with any auxiliary verbs being put into the first person singular form and placed after that.that. It's also considered a V2, language, which means that if a sentence begins with an adverbial, the verb must go second, even when that means the subject comes after. And Japanese... Japanese word order has its own PAGE on TheOtherWiki.
3rd Feb '16 6:34:22 AM PRH
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* Form compound nouns differently. Most languages put the base noun at the back, but there are languages which put it at the front. As an example, ''control CENTER'' would be translated as ''PUSAT kawalan'' in Malay language.

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* Form compound nouns differently.
**
Most languages put the base noun at the back, but there are languages which put it at the front. As an example, ''control CENTER'' would be translated as ''PUSAT kawalan'' in Malay language.language.
** Many languages can't even have compound nouns at all the way English does (that is, just by stringing nouns together). They either have to inflect the modifier nouns to distinguish them from the base noun, turn the modifier nouns into adjectives, or to form elaborate phrases to convey the meaning. The same example, "control center", would be rendered into Russian as "центр управлени'''я'''" (literally "center ''of'' control") not "управление центр" or "центр управление".
2nd Feb '16 2:43:19 PM PRH
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* Some languages have rare sounds and unusual phonotactics, which can make them sound like the TheUnpronouncable. Many world languages do not like big clusters of either consonants or vowels. A maximum of about three consonants per vowel, and no more than three vowels in a row is usual. Russian can be really dickish with odd sound consonants, especially with prepositions. Can you say kvrachu or vsmolensk or vtorom or vpragu or sdrugymi or vchera? And even Russians shake their heads at ''[[UpToEleven Armenians]]''.[[note]]A famous Soviet era actor had "Mkrtchian" as his surname. That's a six consonants strung together. And it's actually a pretty common Armenian surname and isn't remotely a longest consonant cluster in the language.[[/note]]

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* Some languages have rare sounds and unusual phonotactics, which can make them sound like the TheUnpronouncable. Many world languages do not like big clusters of either consonants or vowels. A maximum of about three consonants per vowel, and no more than three vowels in a row is usual. Russian can be really dickish with odd sound consonants, especially with prepositions. Can you say kvrachu or vsmolensk or vtorom or vpragu or sdrugymi sdrugimi or vchera? vchera?[[note]]It's actually simpler than you might think because of consonant assimilation, it actually sounds like "fsmolensk", "fpragu", "zdrugimi" only "k vrachu" actually sounds like "kvrachu".[[/note]] And even Russians shake their heads at ''[[UpToEleven Armenians]]''.[[note]]A famous Soviet era actor had "Mkrtchian" as his surname. That's a six consonants strung together. And it's actually a pretty common Armenian surname and isn't remotely a longest consonant cluster in the language.[[/note]]
18th Jan '16 3:41:24 AM Khathi
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* Some languages have rare sounds and unusual phonotactics, which can make them sound like the TheUnpronouncable. Many world languages do not like big clusters of either consonants or vowels. A maximum of about three consonants per vowel, and no more than three vowels in a row is usual. Russian can be really dickish with odd sound consonants, especially with prepositions. Can you say kvrachu or vsmolensk or vtorom or vpragu or sdrugymi or vchera?

to:

* Some languages have rare sounds and unusual phonotactics, which can make them sound like the TheUnpronouncable. Many world languages do not like big clusters of either consonants or vowels. A maximum of about three consonants per vowel, and no more than three vowels in a row is usual. Russian can be really dickish with odd sound consonants, especially with prepositions. Can you say kvrachu or vsmolensk or vtorom or vpragu or sdrugymi or vchera?vchera? And even Russians shake their heads at ''[[UpToEleven Armenians]]''.[[note]]A famous Soviet era actor had "Mkrtchian" as his surname. That's a six consonants strung together. And it's actually a pretty common Armenian surname and isn't remotely a longest consonant cluster in the language.[[/note]]
8th Jun '15 12:19:47 PM apocavis
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Added DiffLines:

* Require the use of [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Classifier_%28linguistics%29 classifiers]] when counting nouns. A common characteristic of East and South East Asian languages. There are classifiers for animate and inanimate nouns, for roundish, stick-like or sheet-like objects, for people, for things that go in pairs and for everything else under the sky.
5th Mar '15 9:19:41 AM clone799
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* There can also be grammatical gender for numbers. In Hebrew, there is a male and female form (the latter is the one commonly used for plain numbers - probably because the male form is often a syllable longer). Sometimes, it's worse, when there are further divisions due to the object type. There is a story about a [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nivkh Nivkh]] child who had trouble subtracting five buttons from thirty and adding six trees to seven - because the shape of the buttons and the size of the trees weren't specified.

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* There can also be grammatical gender for numbers. In Hebrew, there is a male and female form (the latter is the one commonly used for plain numbers - probably because the male form is often a syllable longer). Sometimes, it's worse, when there are further divisions due to the object type. There is a story about a [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nivkh Nivkh]] child who had trouble subtracting five buttons from thirty and adding six trees to seven - because the shape of the buttons and the size of the trees weren't specified. specified.
** Portuguese, Spanish and other Romance Languages have a variation on this: they can mark some numbers in both gender and ''[[DepartmentofRedundancyDepartment number]]'', but not all of them and not always. For Portuguese, the rule is you can one, two and numbers ending in them (such as one hundred and two) in gender, but not eleven or twelve, nor their derivatives, and only when denoting quantities of specific things, otherwise the male is standard). In number you can mark any number that doesn't end with "S" or "Z", but this is only for denoting quantities of numbers[[note]]''Quatro'' (Four) and ''Quatros'' (Fours) but only "Três" (Three[s])[[/note]].
28th Feb '15 6:24:52 AM SeptimusHeap
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** Similarly, many non-English languages divide up ''colors'' [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linguistic_relativity_and_the_color_naming_debate differently from the Western standard "ROY G. BIV"]], with some having as few as just ''two'' basic colors (black and white)[[note]]Or rather black/dark/cold and white/bright/warm[[/note]]. Quite a few make [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Distinguishing_blue_from_green_in_language no distinction at all between blue and green]]. On the other hand, some Asian languages have dozens if not hundreds of distinct color names. An author writing a race with a different visual range from humans (such as demihumans from [[DungeonsAndDragons D&D]], who frequently possess vision in the infrared range) may forget to create terms for [[FictionalColour colors humans can't see at all]], not even "[[http://www.negativland.com/archives/015squant/story.html squant]]" or "[[Discworld/TheColourOfMagic octarine]]".

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** Similarly, many non-English languages divide up ''colors'' [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linguistic_relativity_and_the_color_naming_debate differently from the Western standard "ROY G. BIV"]], with some having as few as just ''two'' basic colors (black and white)[[note]]Or rather black/dark/cold and white/bright/warm[[/note]]. Quite a few make [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Distinguishing_blue_from_green_in_language no distinction at all between blue and green]]. On the other hand, some Asian languages have dozens if not hundreds of distinct color names. An author writing a race with a different visual range from humans (such as demihumans from [[DungeonsAndDragons D&D]], ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragon'', who frequently possess vision in the infrared range) may forget to create terms for [[FictionalColour colors humans can't see at all]], not even "[[http://www.negativland.com/archives/015squant/story.html squant]]" or "[[Discworld/TheColourOfMagic octarine]]".
9th Jan '15 5:07:23 PM HowlingSnail
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** Have many more articles than English. German articles change according to gender, number, and case of the noun, resulting in 24 possible combinations for the definitive article (although those are only expressed through 6 forms).

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** Have many more articles than English. German articles change according to gender, number, and case of the noun, resulting in 24 16 possible combinations for the definitive article (although those are only expressed through 6 forms).
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