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Ranking the "Medium Hard" Languages

  Tags: Difficulty
 Language Learning Forum : General discussion Post Reply
62 messages over 8 pages: 1 2 3 4 5 68 Next >>
tarvos
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Studies: Greek, Modern Hebrew, Spanish, Portuguese, Czech, Korean, Esperanto, Finnish

 
 Message 49 of 62
12 January 2014 at 9:36pm | IP Logged 
Solfrid Cristin wrote:
Марк wrote:
Chung wrote:



- Spelling
This is related to above. Russian spelling falls between the stools when it comes to
being morphological and phonemic. One example is хорошо "good, well", unstressed 'o' is
pronounced a lot like 'a' and in this instance it sounds more like 'harasho' rather
than
'horosho'. Turkish spelling is very phonemic, as you probably know.

hərɐ'sho probably. The first vowel is by no means an [a].


Maybe not to a native Russian, but it definitely sounds like "harasho" to me - (with
the h representing the
Spanish j.


Mark is right, that first a is not an a. And Mark, Spanish j can be uvular in Madrid
but I think it's velar in other parts of Spain.
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Марк
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Russian Federation
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2096 posts - 2972 votes 
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 Message 50 of 62
12 January 2014 at 9:46pm | IP Logged 
http://ru.forvo.com/word/%D1%85%D0%BE%D1%80%D0%BE%D1%88%D0%B E/#ru
Here you can hear the word. Those who pronounce харашо are not from Russia.I like th
first one.
The phonetic transcription from Wictionary xərɐˈʂo

Edited by Марк on 12 January 2014 at 9:49pm

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cwcowellshah
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United States
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34 posts - 52 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Swedish

 
 Message 51 of 62
12 January 2014 at 10:01pm | IP Logged 
Serpent wrote:
In the real world, the Romance languages are easier to learn than the
Scandinavian ones because there are great resources.


I agree completely, but fortunately I've found there to be sufficient on-line and in-print
material for effective self-study of Swedish. You don't have the crazy abundance of learning
options that you do for Romance languages, but there's enough to make good progress in.

I can't speak about Norwegian, Danish, or Icelandic, though I suspect rounding up a
sufficiently large and diverse set of self-study materials might be quite a bit harder than for
Swedish.
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tarvos
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 Message 52 of 62
12 January 2014 at 10:25pm | IP Logged 
Марк wrote:
http://ru.forvo.com/word/%D1%85%D0%BE%D1%80%D0%BE%D1%88%D0%B E/#ru
Here you can hear the word. Those who pronounce харашо are not from Russia.I like th
first one.
The phonetic transcription from Wictionary xərɐˈʂo


Are they Belarusian? Ukrainian?
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Марк
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Russian Federation
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 Message 53 of 62
12 January 2014 at 10:37pm | IP Logged 
The country is written near the sample, you can listen and make conclusions. Maybe харашо
is sometimes due to the effort of the speaker.
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Марк
Senior Member
Russian Federation
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2096 posts - 2972 votes 
Speaks: Russian*

 
 Message 54 of 62
12 January 2014 at 10:41pm | IP Logged 
http://ru.forvo.com/word/jota/#es
Here are samples of the Spanish word jota.
The first speaker is pronouncing an uvular sound, the third - maybe a velar but with a
lot of friction, more than in x in Russian.
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tarvos
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 Message 55 of 62
12 January 2014 at 10:50pm | IP Logged 
Second and third are clearly not uvular. The first is uvular, but that doesn't tell me
from which part of Spain he is from. Though I will say here that my Spanish is really
nothing to write home about.

Edited by tarvos on 12 January 2014 at 11:15pm

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Solfrid Cristin
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Norway
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Speaks: Norwegian*, Spanish, Swedish, French, English, German, Italian
Studies: Russian

 
 Message 56 of 62
12 January 2014 at 10:58pm | IP Logged 
vonPeterhof wrote:
Solfrid Cristin wrote:
Марк wrote:
Chung wrote:



- Spelling
This is related to above. Russian spelling falls between the stools when it comes to
being morphological and phonemic. One example is хорошо "good, well", unstressed 'o' is
pronounced a lot like 'a' and in this instance it sounds more like 'harasho' rather than
'horosho'. Turkish spelling is very phonemic, as you probably know.

hərɐ'sho probably. The first vowel is by no means an [a].


Maybe not to a native Russian, but it definitely sounds like "harasho" to me - (with the h representing the
Spanish j.
From my experience, that's also how it sounds to most native speakers as well.
Everyone is aware of vowel reduction, but it seems like only those with some training in phonetics are aware
of the degrees of reduction. I had some trouble convincing my cousin that all three o's in молоко were
pronounced differently in standard Russian (and in the end I suspect he just found it easier to pretend to
agree with me, while still not hearing any difference between the first two o's). And indeed, phonemically
o and a do merge together in unstressed positions, into a phoneme that is by convention designated as /a/.
It's just that the phoneme has a number of possible realizations depending on its position in the word.


Your cousin has my full sympathy :-) I would go with malako there ( possibly with the second a leaning more
towards the vowel Mark described for harasho. I do hope middle aged Russians find a Scandinavian accent
charming, because I am starting to suspect I have a pretty strong one.

Edit: Sigh. I realize that you guys are too advanced for me. I said a Spanish j just to mark the difference from
a regular h as in horse. I did not mean to get you into the details of the-whatever-you-call-the-sound-which-in-
Norway-is-only-used-prior-to-spitting. Which we of course don't do :-)

Edited by Solfrid Cristin on 12 January 2014 at 11:06pm



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