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Iversen’s Multiconfused Log (see p.1!)

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tarvos
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 Message 3097 of 3959
15 November 2012 at 2:53pm | IP Logged 
My Assimil states that in current Breton, the -tan epithet is often left off for cars,
making a car simply ur c'harr (because karr mutates after an article). So that makes it
effectively the same word as in Irish, although of course in Breton the word "karr" also
doubles as the word for French "char".

An airport in Breton is also a loan: it's written as aerborzh. (with zh pronounced as an
s due to end-of-word devoicing).

Edited by tarvos on 15 November 2012 at 2:54pm

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Iversen
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 Message 3098 of 3959
16 November 2012 at 11:53pm | IP Logged 
I know next to nothing about Breton, but sometime in the future I'll sit down and read my Kauderwälsch booklet about that language. So far I stick to Irish, which represents the other half of the surviving Celtic languages. It is fascinating to think that the Celts once ruled a large part of Europe. But then they had to move even further West until they almost were driven into the Atlantic ocean.

RU: Кстати о кельтов: Я уже несколько раз упоминал номере журнала Geo с кельтами в качестве темы. Кроме того, я изучал страницы в этом журнале в этот вечер, но это было не о кельтов - это было два дня из путешествие через сибирскую тайгу - в дождь! У меня есть, очевидно, без перевода этого журнала, и текст варьируется между начальной и трудно читать.

GR: Επίσης έχω διαβάσει και εν μέρει αντιγραφή ενός κειμένου κυπριακή ιστορία των Μαρωνιτών Εκκλησίας σε Κύπρος. Εγώ όμως πίστευα πως υπήρχε μόνο στο Λίβανο.

I have spent part of the evening reading/copying parts of a diary by a member of an expedition through the Siberian taiga (somewhere South East of Irkitsk) - and apparently it rained most of the time. It was in the same number of a Russian GEO as the stuff about the Celts. A good investment by any standard.

I have also read a text about the Maronitic church on Cyprus. However when I wanted to find the original source in order to publish the link here I quoted this passage to Google: "Οι μαρωνιτες ανήκουν στο Ανατολικό" ... and got 73 answers! As it seems I'm not the only one to copy things, but at least I have the decency to do it by hand. I know that I read some stuff yesterday from pro.com.gr, and I know I found the Maronite stuff through that page. And I read it because I didn't know that there were Maronites outside Lebanon.



Edited by Iversen on 18 November 2012 at 6:18pm

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Iversen
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 Message 3099 of 3959
18 November 2012 at 8:24pm | IP Logged 
DA: Jeg læste i min avis i dag at danske gymnasier i stigende grad tilbyder eksotiske sprog såsom kinesisk, japansk, tyrkisk og arabisk, samtidig med at traditionelle sprog som fransk og tysk tiltrækker stadig færre elever. Formanden for de danske sproglæreres forening kommenterer denne udvikling som følger (citat Jyllandsposten): "Det er slet ikke en dårlig idé at give de unge en forståelse af, hvad der sker forskellige steder i verden. Men rent sprogligt kan gymnasieleverne kun nå et niveau til turistbrug. Det rækker ikke til et job i Kina (…) Det er synd, at der undervises på bekostning af sprog som engelsk, tysk og fransk, for de sprog har eleverne reelt mulighed for at lære". Nu kan det jo være at de der vælger disse sprog kommmer fra en tosproget baggrund, og så kan de måske nå længere - hvilket Undervisningsministeriets fagkonsulent for 'små sprog' René Bühlmann skyndte sig at pointere. Men det er nok rigtigt at vi risikerer at stå tilbage med en årgang af gymnasiaster, hvis 3. sprog (efter dansk og engelsk) ikke kan bruges til ret meget andet end at bestille en øl på en bar i Wuhan. I øvrigt er det første gang jeg har set engelsk nævnt blandt de vigende sprog - men hvis eleverne ikke lærer det i skolen, lærer de det vel udenfor den. Engelsk skal nok overleve.

I read in my newspaper today that the number of high schools students who choose (and can choose) exotic languages like Chinese, Japanese, Turkish and Arabic is going up, while traditional languages like English (!), French and German are heading downwards. I had not expected to see English on this last group because it is becoming more and more like a second language for everybody here - but if the students don't learn it in school they will learn it outside. The leader of the organisation for language teachers in Denmark is worried because those European languages are close enough to Danish to make it feasible to learn them during the three years period you spend in the Danish 'gymnasium' - but she fears that those who choose exotic languages end up with something that can't be used in a job situation, but only to survive as a tourist. However those who choose Turkish and Araboc may have a bilingual background, and then three years will probably be enough, says the official subject advisor for 'small languages' in the ministry for education.

Apart from that, I have mostly been watching TV programs in English this afternoon - there was a series of paleontological programs on Nat Geo Wild, and I watched for instance a program where the gait of certain animals was conjectured by the use of a computer program which calculates the most energy efficient way of moving for an animal with a certain body. One of the long dead 'guinea pigs' was a Tarbosaurus called Popasaurus who conceivably could jump. But it would be more efficient for it to run on two legs for most of the time (so it wasn't an early roo type). In this program they specified that the Tarbosaurus weren't dinosaurs (birds are, though) - but far too often any old critter is called a dinosaur. Such as the blue fish which was the subject of the following program - it's the last surviving Coelecanth, NOT a dinosaurus fish. And Mosasauri, Plesiosauri, Pterosauri, Pelycosaurs and Brontosaurus weren't Dinosaurs either - in the case of Brontosaurus because there never was such a thing: the name was given to an headless Apatosaurus at the Yale Peabody museum which had been given the head of a Camarasaurus by the famous Othniel Marsh. But at least both Apatos and Camaras are (or were) two genuine 100% true dinosarian dinosaur species. Of the kind with the big feet, also known (for this reason) as Sauropods.      

Besides I have studied Irish, using the article about the "Teangacha Rómánsacha" from the "ciclipéid shaor" Vicipéid. And luckily this article was fairly easy to read. There was one thing that rang a bell somewhere: while Latin was called a SOV language its descendants within the Romance languages have all become SVO. I have recently read an article at "Life's Little Mysteries" which contained the claim that

" Out of the 2,000 modern languages that fit in the family tree, the researchers found that more than half are SOV languages. The ones that are SVO, OVS and OSV all derive directly from SOV languages — never the other way around. For example, French, which is SVO, derives from Latin, which is SOV. Furthermore, languages that are VSO and VOS always derive from SVO languages. Thus, all languages descend from an original SOV word order – "which leads to the conclusion that the word order in the language from which all modern languages derive must have been SOV," Ruhlen wrote.

Gosh. That means that the first person who uttered a complete sentence in a grey and misty past somehow managed to establish the SOV order once and for all, and then this order was the only accepted one for tens (or maybe hundreds) of thousands of years until some unruly mind a few thousand years ago decided to say goodbye to the mindset of Yoda and his kin by putting the verb somewhere between the subject and the object (if there is one). And it is suggested that the loss of inflection is part of the explanation for this. And then we are back to the age old question about the morphological richness of the old languages which somehow always seems to move towards less morphology and more chaos.

That claim more research deserves.

Edited by Iversen on 20 November 2012 at 12:59pm

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tarvos
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 Message 3100 of 3959
18 November 2012 at 10:09pm | IP Logged 
Where do V2 languages (which I guess are usually SVO, but anyway) fit into this picture?
Thinking of many of the Germanic languages here which are usually verb-second, except
English I believe.

Irish is VSO, is it not? And how would this theory go about explaining topicalization
(which is paramount in Breton for example, which is normally V2 but can be VSO easily if
the topic requires it and the verb is stressed). So does this mean Old Celtic was
probably SVO?

Edited by tarvos on 18 November 2012 at 10:20pm

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Iversen
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 Message 3101 of 3959
19 November 2012 at 4:27am | IP Logged 
Sometimes the criteria for putting a language in a group are shaky because the word order is free or mixed (as for instance in German, where verbs drift to the end of subordinate phrases),but I can't see how anyone would dare to put Irish anywhere than in the VSO group.

Topicalisation is not an argument which the people behind those SVO etc. groupings have taken seriously - as far as I can see it is treated as a pure surface phenomenon. But when surface phenomena become the rule then the postulated hidden rule may become an irrelevant construct.

I didn't know that there was a V2 group - does that imply that there are two verbal constituents in each sentence?? OK, your reference to German implies that it means 'verb second', but then the result would be either SVO or OVS .. or it would refer to cases of topicalisation, which the theory doesn't take into account (as in Danish "I går spiste konen ingenting" - literally 'yesterday ate the woman nothing).



Edited by Iversen on 19 November 2012 at 4:34am

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tarvos
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 Message 3102 of 3959
19 November 2012 at 8:03am | IP Logged 
The thing is that German and Dutch are V2 in main clauses but SOV in subclauses usually
(in Dutch there are a few exceptions to this rule, excluding topicalisation as you said).
I also know that Swedish functions much like you described Danish.

But what I meant is that in most Germanic sentences, the verb comes second in the
sentence (and what comes first doesn't have to be the object, it can be something random
like an adverb of time).
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Iversen
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 Message 3103 of 3959
20 November 2012 at 12:55pm | IP Logged 
FR: J'ai souvent mentionné la télé et mes intensives études de textes breves, dans quelques cas aussi des livres ou articles que j'ai lu extensivement, mais rarement le pêle-mêle de textes sur l'internet que je lis pour maintentir mes 'vielles' langues. Une raison pour cela pourrait être que je ne note rien, même pas le nom de la page que j'ai brièvement parcouru. Mais voici un example, qui est intéressant parce que on voit le français d'un côté peu habituel, celle de l'argot. Une personne nommée Pierre-François Lacenaire qui vivait de 1800 à 1836 est invoqué par l'illustre Baudelaire lui-même comme un de ses prédecesseurs, et dans un article sur l'internet j'ai trouvé une traduction d'un de ses poèmes en français ordinaire:

Pègres traqueurs, qui voulez tous du fade,
Prêtez l’esgourde à mon dur boniment :
Vous commencez à tirer en valade,
Puis au grand truc vous marchez en taffant.
Le pante aboule,
On perd la boule,
Puis de la taule on se crampe en rompant.
On vous roussine ;
Et puis la tine
Vient remoucher la butte en rigolant.

Traduction

Voleurs poltrons qui voulez part an butin,
(..)
Pour commencer, vous fouillez dans les poches ;
Puis, quand vous vous mêlez de tuer, vous tremblez.
La victime arrive,
On perd la tête,
Et on se sauve de la maison a la hâte.
On vous dénonce,
Et puis le peuple
Vient voir guillotiner, en riant.


Il y a une liste de mots argotiques dans l'article lui-même, mais consultez aussi - si besoin est - le dictionaire argotique de 'Bob' sur le site de languefrancaise.net.   

Il serait presque superflu de constater que monsieur Lacenaire lui-même a perdu sa tête à la fin de sa courte vie.

PS: Malgré les apparences ce n'est pas 'tine' qui a la signification "guillotine", mais 'butte'

Edited by Iversen on 20 November 2012 at 1:24pm

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Iversen
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 Message 3104 of 3959
22 November 2012 at 10:05am | IP Logged 
GE: Ich habe gestern estwas über Altenglisch und andere alte Sprachen (leichtes Grinzeln) geschrieben und dabei auch Althochdeutsch erwähnt. Wenn ich dafür ein Bißchen gegoogelt habe, sah ich, daß es einen wohlerhaltenen Text namens "Heliand" (oder "Heiland") von etwa 800 n.C. gibt. Mit dem wenig spätere "Liber evangeliorum" von Otfrid von Weißenburg (* um 790; † 875) ist es ein wertvolles Beispiel von frühmittelälderlicher Schreibkunst in der sächsischen Sprache. Und es ist einfacher zu lesen als ich erwartet hätte (das Niebelungenlied stellte mich vor mehr Probleme). Glücklicherwise sind sowohl das Original und eine gute Übersetzung davon leicht zu finden auf dem Internet: in der Bibliotheca Augustana und im Projekt Gutenberg. Man kann wohl sagen, daß es so was wie eine Art Nacherzählung der Evangelien für einfache Leute (ich hätte fast gesagt, 'Dummies'), und der Teil den ich gelesen habe war wie ein nachgedichtetes Weihnachtsevangelium (nach Lukas und zum Teil Markus). Mir würde normalerweise langweilig, wenn ich so was biblisches lesen sollte, aber es hilft, wenn es in einer exotischen Sprache mit archäologischen Obertöne geschieht. Die Kapiteleinteilungen stimmen übrigens nicht übereins und ich weiß nicht, warum so viele Klammer im Originaltext stehen, aber hier ist eine Probe davon (ohne Klammer):

Thô uuard fon Rûmuburg | Rîkes mannes
obar alla thesa imrminthiod | Octauiânas
ban endi bodskepi | obar thea is brêdon giuuald
cuman fon them kêsure | cungino gihuilicun,
hêmsitteandiun, | sô uuîdo sô is heritogon
obar al that landskepi | liudio giuueldun.

Da brachte man von Rom aus des mächtigen Manns
Über all dies Erdenvolk, Octavians,
Bann und Botschaft: über sein breites Reich
Kam es von dem Kaiser an die Könige all,
Die daheim saßen, soweit seine Herzoge
Über all den Landen der Leute gewalteten.


Hyperliteral translation:
Then was from Rome | 'rich' (=mighty) man's
over all this EarthlyPeople | Octavian's
order and message: | over this his broad wealth
came from the emperor | to kings all,
home-sitting, | as-well-as his dukes
over all the land(scape)s | (by) people ruled.

(and so forth ... make a census etc.)

GE: Ohne Übersetzung hätte ich ein Problem gehabt, aber mit Übersetzung geht es - und ich habe auch einige Wörter bemerkt, die ich aus Isländisch (und damit Altnordisch) kenne, sowie "imrminthiod" - Erdenvolk.

I wrote something about Old English and Saxon yesterday in the thread Language X is older than Y, and while looking up a few things through Google I noticed a reference to a text in Old Saxon from around 800, "Heliand" (or Heiland). Later on I have read some parts of this work (with the help of a German Translation made by a certain Karl Simrock, possibly a relative of the people behind the musical score company). It was surprisingly easy reading compared with for instance Beowulf (in Anglosaxon), and in spite of being a biblical text AND very old it was quite entertaining. If Old English/Anglosaxon is harder to read nowadays it can be explained by the brutal rupture of the linguistic continuity by the Norman invasion, but German has kept much of its Medieval morphology and - as it seems - vocabulary (although 'thiod' for 'people' has been lost, but I recognize this word from Icelandic and Old Norse). I read through several chapters, but the one I spent most time on was a parallel to the Christmas Tale by Lukas. The poem, which has been preserved in almost its entire form in two manuscripts and a couple of fragments, is so to say a versified New Testament for dummies. And it dates from 800, which in itself makes it a valuable treasure.

PS: the same section is quoted verbatim here (as an appendix to a Proto-Germanic grammar), accompanied by the corresponding passage in Luke in other old and dusty versions including Wulfila's bible in Gothic..
Warþ þan in dagans jainans, urrann gagrefts from kaisara Agustau, gameljan allana midjungard.

A version in Old English:
Sōþlīce on þām dagum wæs geworden gebod fram þām Cāsere Augusto, þæt eall ymbehwyrft wǣre tōmearcod

and one in Old High German from the late 9. century (now in the Monastery of St. Gallen):
Uuard thô gitân in then tagun, framquam gibot fon ðemo aluualten keisure, thaz gibrieuit vvurdi al these umbiuuerft.


Edited by Iversen on 23 November 2012 at 2:33am



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