Sylvio   Thursday, January 29, 2004, 15:45 GMT
What do you think about that language?
vincent   Thursday, January 29, 2004, 17:35 GMT
Sylvio, i am french and i think my language has a lot of unuseful complications.Moreover i don't think it's the best language in the world although some stupid french did so.Because there is no "best language in the world", it's a concept which doesn't exist for a linguist.There are a lot of clichés about that.And you what do you think about this language?
Emily   Thursday, January 29, 2004, 17:46 GMT
I love this language, I think it is really beautiful and romantic!
Andrew J.   Thursday, January 29, 2004, 18:26 GMT
I have nothing against the French but I do think their language is rather difficult, especially with spellings and pronunciations. Why do they use so many silent letters?
vincent   Thursday, January 29, 2004, 19:01 GMT
andrew,english has the same complications: enough,through,bough,hiccough,though,etc,etc...
Lavoisel   Thursday, January 29, 2004, 20:55 GMT
My point of view, the one of a native speaker, would not be very usefull for those who would like to know if French would be an interesting language to learn.
However, Clark, an American who posts regularly in this forum, made an interesting comment about the difficulty of the spelling.
He said that it was hard to get for a total beginner, but once you begin to get used to it, you can rather easily see its logic, while English spelling doesn't really have such a thing that you could call "logic".
Simon   Friday, January 30, 2004, 07:44 GMT
I like the French language but this whole académie française thing and the attitude of traditional French society to their language is a little on the anal side. Plus all those fils/filles de papa at the Grandes Ecoles - That's all so much crap. I can see why some Americans hate them. But that's France and the language also exists elsewhere, eg. many African countries.

France today has a vibrant forward-looking culture and although their language is declining in use as a lingua franca, it is very strong as a first language in France and elsewhere.
Sylvio   Friday, January 30, 2004, 08:49 GMT
what's fils à papa?
Is french closer to Italian or Spanish?
Personnaly i think Accadémie française is a part of the french culture, good or bad, who knows? I don't think it's bad personnally, every people has the right to dispose of himself, they do what they want in theire own country like english, americans, germans etc do what they want.
sylvio to vincent   Friday, January 30, 2004, 08:52 GMT
i think french seem to have amany similarities with italian more than spanish. I don't understand anything to french and italian, but it seems to closer.
Sylvio   Friday, January 30, 2004, 09:05 GMT
correction : "to be closer" of course
Lavoisel   Friday, January 30, 2004, 12:19 GMT
Sylvio, you are quite right. As a French who used to learn Spanish, I often find it easy to understand "l'italiano" due to a very close grammar and lots of words which are different only because of a final "o" or "a" or "e".
"Español" has much more differences with the two formers due to the particular story and influences of the language. I know some Portuguese who find easy to understand Spanish. None of them has said such a thing about Italian.

Simon, I used to think that French spelling should be reformed but I have changed my mind. English has its own characteristics, so has French.
The most germanised latin dialect tends to reflect its roots, while the most latinised german dialect tends to be very flexible.
New words in spoken English can quickly become an entry in the Dictionary. Conversely, in French, spoken language and written language must remain two different things.
In French, the latin and greek words are often used to form new words. Whereas English, which has not such defined roots, make new words by combining current words.

Such characteristics don't make one language bad and the other good.
sylvio   Friday, January 30, 2004, 14:26 GMT
Does it mean a french can easily an italian, fantastic isn't it. So many common points between themselves :

-food & wine
sylvio   Friday, January 30, 2004, 14:29 GMT
correction caneasily "understand", i'm using to fast my keyboard
Sara   Friday, January 30, 2004, 16:09 GMT
French : il a probablement pris le train et là, il a mangé une salade
Italian : ha probabilmente preso il treno e là, ha mangiato un'insalata

(English : he probably took the train and there, he ate a salad)

Indeed, French and Italian are sometimes very very close ! Which is normal, as those two languages are dialects from latin. However, it is not that easy for a French to understand Italian and vice versa. As this second example shows...

F : le voleur est parti en courant, et ensuite, s'est caché derrière un buisson
I : il ladro ha corso via, e quindi, si è nascosto dietro ad un cespuglio

(E : the robber ran away, and then hid behind a bush)

But anyway, a latin language is very fast to learn if your mother tongue is already another one (3 months are enough to be able to speak fluently!!).

It's true, also that there are many famous clothes and perfume brands coming from the 2 countries, but personally I don't think this is the most interesting point about them.
Guilhem   Saturday, January 31, 2004, 07:08 GMT
"French : il a probablement pris le train et là, il a mangé une salade
Italian : ha probabilmente preso il treno e là, ha mangiato un'insalata"

Occitan: El a probablament pres lo tren e lai, el a manjat una ensalada.
Spanish: Él tomó probablemente el tren y allí, él comió una ensalada.
Portuguese: Ele provavelmente tomou o trem e aí, ele comeu uma salada.

As you can see, the verbs "to take" and "to eat" in Spanish and Portuguese (tomar/comer) are very different from French (prendre/manger), Italian (prendere/mangiare) and Occitan (prene/manjar) but the rest of the words are similar.