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How many languages can you speak?

  1. Aug 12, 2009 #1
    Just like the title says, how many languages can you speak? Actually fluent in, not counting bits and pieces. 1,2,3 or more? Post which ones if you want.

    I myself am only fluent in one. :( Hopefully before I die I can make it two or more. lol. I want to learn czech and german (I'm 25% of each) and maybe one more. :D I know a little czech, only like touristy phrases though, such as; where is ___? can I have ___? how much is ____? how are you? Stuff like that.

    Anyway, post up! :D
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 12, 2009 #2
    I speak only 1. But I went to school with a good friend that spoke 6:

    Arabic (2 dialects)
  4. Aug 12, 2009 #3


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    I have lost most of my French and German through disuse, so I'm back to English (and Chicago-style blues). I met the daughter of a Scottish diplomat based in Switzerland when I was in college, and her English, French, German, and Italian were perfect and unaccented to my ears.
  5. Aug 12, 2009 #4


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    I'm English - I'm sorry, I don't understand the question
  6. Aug 12, 2009 #5


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    I can speak most dialects of English.. that's at least 4 languages!
  7. Aug 12, 2009 #6
    Does C++ count?
  8. Aug 12, 2009 #7
    I proudly have in capabilities of speaking the 4 languages. English the best.
  9. Aug 12, 2009 #8
    I am only fluent in English; I can speak some Latin and Romanian. (No, I am not Romanian on either side.)
  10. Aug 12, 2009 #9
    I can speak English and Newfie fluently, and am conversational in Aussie and British and French, and have studied the basics of Russian and Mandarin.
  11. Aug 12, 2009 #10
    I can only speak english and bits of Spanish from high school, but I plan on learning Hebrew in college, (granted they provide it next semester!) and maybe some French or Russian afterwards.
  12. Aug 13, 2009 #11
    3 languages here.
  13. Aug 13, 2009 #12
    I know english and a few dialects of english. I know only a smattering of ebonics.
  14. Aug 13, 2009 #13
    I can speak 2 fluently, english and afrikaans...
  15. Aug 13, 2009 #14


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    English and Modern Hebrew
  16. Aug 13, 2009 #15
    I'm Australian but I speak American-English with a hint of British-English. None of this "G'day Mate! ho'ya doin'?" "Ya! good mate! Yah!" "Hows tee misses?" "Shes doin' alright aye! No worries dere mate!" "Mate! We gotta catch-up. Hava XXXX. We shoulda tak' tee old Commondore for a spin". Poor representation. I know. Sorry but it is fair worse than that.

    That is hands down a language on its own.

    I can also speak a substantial amount of German. I have had 2 attempts at learning French but failed on both occasions. I endeavour, after graduation, to move to a Scandinavian country. So we can say two for now and another potential future prospect.
  17. Aug 13, 2009 #16
    I know two languages but can only speak one.
    English and Sign Language (ASL)
  18. Aug 17, 2009 #17
    English (South African dialect)
    Dutch (actually East Flemish dialect from Belgium)
    German (fluency is lacking due to not using it enough any more)
    I can read and understand spoken Afrikaans, but don't speak it.
  19. Aug 17, 2009 #18

    jim mcnamara

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    None very well. :)
  20. Aug 17, 2009 #19
  21. Aug 17, 2009 #20


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    The question is actually slightly ambiguous since it depends on what you mean by "fluent".

    When I moved to England 4 years ago I THOUGHT I was fluent in English; but having to deal with estate agents, set up a bank account, home insurance etc proved me wrong.
    I quickly realized that there were plenty of words/expressions that I did now understand that are actually quite common in the "everyday" English (I e.g. did not know what a current account was); I also realized that there is huge difference between being able to understand what the actors in a Hollywood movie are saying and being able to understand someone sitting in a call-centre in northern Scotland. It took me a couple of years to reach a point where I felt comfortable talking to e.g. my bank over the phone.

    I should point out that I've never had any problems at work, most of my English colleagues speak "Oxbridge" English which is easy to understand; and as long as the conversation centred around physics I was OK (I did my PhD in a very international group, so even when I was working in Sweden I spoke English most of the time while at work).
  22. Aug 17, 2009 #21


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    That's a different language
    Estate agent (=Realtor) to English

    Benefits From: Contains a feature you may expect to be the bare minimum for the extraordinary price you are paying.
    Example: "Benefits from roof, floors, walls".

    Bijou: Would suit contortionist with growth hormone deficiency.

    Borders: Loose term signifying that a property is sufficiently close to a desirable area to ensure the burglars who live next door to you will travel to work.
    Example: "Fidel Castro's house is situated in the highly desirable Bahamas Borders area".

    Characterful: A neat disguise for old and falling down.

    Charming: Pokey

    Compact: See Bijou, then divide by two.

    Convenient For: A deceptive term with two possible definitions depending on the object of the phrase:
    Eg "Convenient For A40" means your garden doubles as the hard shoulder
    Whereas "Convenient For local amenities" means you can run to the shops. If you are Paula Radcliffe.

    Four bedrooms: Three bedrooms and a cupboard.

    In Need of Modernisation: In need of demolition.

    Internal Viewing Recommended: Looks awful on the outside.

    Mature Garden: The local AZ marks your garden as Terra Incognita.

    Original Features: Water tank still contains cholera bacterium.

    Priced to Sell: Please, oh go on please...

    Studio: You can wash the dishes, watch the telly, and answer the front door without getting up from the toilet.
  23. Aug 17, 2009 #22


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    That's okay, it's just as much a difference in understanding American English as it is being able to understand someone sitting in a call center in India.

    Being a typical American, I'm only fluent in English...I can manage well enough though with switching around consonants and vowels at the end of words and sticking some extra vowels into the middle of words, and replacing z's with s's, and for that matter, switching my zees to zeds, to be fluent in Canadian and British English as well. It takes a little refreshing of my memory, but when speaking with someone who only knows British English, I can remember to use the other words for things too...like calling the elevator a lift, and fries chips and chips crisps, etc. I still get befuddled a bit by Australian English.
  24. Aug 17, 2009 #23


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    :rofl: They have those in New York City too! :rofl:
  25. Aug 17, 2009 #24


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    Strangely enough, yes. There was an article (or maybe just a small item) in SciAm a few years ago in which scientists had determined that computer programming is actually governed by the language centres of the brain.
    I speak English only. I tried to learn Russian about 20 years ago. Got along fine until the conversational parts of the tape came along. You can't read lips on a stereo speaker, though, so I had to give it up. :frown:
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2009
  26. Aug 17, 2009 #25

    english - native
    russian - native
    spanish - read/write pretty well, listen/speak not as well
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