October 28th, 2010

Language [Latin] is [Old English] a [Old English] strange [Old French] thing [German]. We [Germanic] think [Germanic] of [Greek] it [Germanic] as [Old English] so [Germanic] instinctive [Latin] and [Germanic] native [Latin], but [Old English] in [Greek] fact [Latin] it [Germanic] comes [Germanic] from [Old Norse] all [Germanic] over [Old English] the [Old English] place [Greek], English [Old English] is [Old English] a [Old English] mongrel [German].

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Rowan said:

One should be able to maestr the grammar and working vocabulary of German in about two semesters of standard university instruction. After that, a minimum of six weeks in a part of Germany where the spoken language is closest to what you have learned (so forget Austria, Switzerland, and most of the south, as beautiful as these parts of the world are ), and you could attain fluency. Norwegian and Swedish are relatively easier for a native English speaker to learn than German, since modern reforms have simplified grammar and spelling (same goes for Dutch/Flemish). Norwegian has slightly fewer difficult sounds for an English speaker than Swedish, but Danish pronunciation is extremely difficult to maestr. The amount of vocabulary in the Scandinavian languages common to either English or German is extensive. How difficult learning a foreign language may be for you depends upon motivation, innate talent, and your knowledge of English. If you have a good understanding of English grammar, then you can concentrate on learning German rather than the difference between a direct and an indirect object or what a relative clause is.