Scandinavian language challenge day 4

Today I worked through the first chapter of Danish in three months. This chapter introduces: the verbs to be and to havesubject pronounsdefinite and indefinite articlesplurals of nounsdefinite pluralgreetingsother words The verbs to be and to have The infinitive of the verb to be is at være and its present tense is er. The infinitive…… Continue reading Scandinavian language challenge day 4

Scandinavian language challenge day 3

Today, I started the Norwegian part of my Scandinavian language challenge. I am using Norwegian in Three Months (1989), published by Dorling Kindersley under the Hugo imprint. This book contains an introduction preface, a guide to pronunciation (and spelling), 12 chapters, a key to the exercises, an appendix on Norwegian spelling, a mini-dictionary and an…… Continue reading Scandinavian language challenge day 3

Scandinavian language challenge day 2

I am continuing the Scandinavian language challenge I started yesterday. Today, I started Swedish. I am using Swedish in Three Months (1998), published by Dorling Kindersley under the Hugo imprint. This book contains a preface, a guide to pronunciation (and spelling), 12 chapters, reading practice (4 pages) a key to the exercises and drills, a…… Continue reading Scandinavian language challenge day 2

Scandinavian language challenge day 1

I have set myself a language challenge. I will work through basic introductory language courses on Danish, Swedish and Norwegian, working each day on one of the languages. I’ve picked these languages because: I first started looking at these 3 languages (together with several other languages) around 45 years ago when I first got into…… Continue reading Scandinavian language challenge day 1

Eat for Germany

A mistranslation, this time from Mandarin. Apparently this means “to eat is a blessing, to save is a virtue”, but the translation says “to eat is a blessing to save Germany”. Source: Language Log » To save Germany (upenn.edu) The reference to Germany isn’t random. The last character means virtue and is pronounced De. (the…… Continue reading Eat for Germany

The world in 1529

A nearly monosyllabic (in Italian) statement about the state of the world in 1529. Language Log » Filosofia monosillabica (upenn.edu) My attempt at a translation: Those who can, don’t want toThose who want to, can’tThose who know how, don’tThose who do, don’t know howAnd thus the world goes badly Pedants’ corner My translation commits an…… Continue reading The world in 1529

Song of a Wanderer at Night (2)

I entered my translation of this poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832) for the 2015 Stephen Spender Prize. The entry includes my commentary on the translation. Translation Over hilltops, In treetops, Hardly a sigh. No birdsong in the forest, Your place of rest Is nigh. German original Wandrers Nachtlied 2 (Ein Gleiches) Über allen Gipfeln…… Continue reading Song of a Wanderer at Night (2)