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https://www.duolingo.com/Krinadoodle

Easiest Language?

Krinadoodle
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Are there any languages you guys feel are significantly easier? I mean, I know every language needs practice, and dedication and blah blah blah, but really is one of them easier than the rest? I want to start learning another, is why.

2 years ago

44 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Guitardude2000
Guitardude2000
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Esperanto. It was made to be easy, and there are nearly 2 million speakers. If you keep at it, you can be communicating easily with it in days.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Krinadoodle
Krinadoodle
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Okay thanks. I just recently started that and I was a little confused. I'll just try a little harder :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Platypus01

You do have to work on it! ;-)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NoNameNoFace

Only no one really uses it outside of the internet because you have no way to identify the speakers. Its more of a language to help learn how to learn a language.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/hmada993
hmada993
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How does it help to learn a new language?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NoNameNoFace

Esperanto is easy to learn so you wont get very frustrated learning it as much and progress at a decent rate. It exposes you to how languages are constructed although that happens with learning any language especially ones similar to your native language. Ive seen claims that people who learn esperanto learn another language later more easily so it would make a decent starter language for monolingual people.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ictram
Ictram
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I agree with Esperanto, altough there are of course difficult elements to it. Its grammar is really simple and not too hard to remember, I haven't practiced it in months and I still remember quite a lot from it :D

It is also said that learning Esperanto will make it easier to learn French and Spanish, so if you plan to go for those languages but you thought it was too hard you can try Esperanto first. :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NukuchAjau

I totally agree with the second part you wrote about making it easier for other european languages, and after all Esperanto was designed to be fairly easy.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ictram
Ictram
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I think I remember once reading about a study where they apparently concluded that learning Esperanto for one year and then French is more efficient than just learning French, so it does give you a greater understanding about how languages work at least. :)

That said, I sometimes have difficulties with the table of correlatives. Kiu, kio, kia... I find it hard to differenciate between them :p

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Annie18010

I also have trouble with that concept. What even is a corelative?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ictram
Ictram
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I have absolutely no clue to be honest, but then again I am not a native speaker of English :p

This website does explain it pretty well though, even though it's still a lot to remember.

https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Esperanto/Appendix/Table_of_correlatives

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Guitardude2000
Guitardude2000
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Your English is good....honestly I wouldn't have guessed. Kio estas via denaska lingvo?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ictram
Ictram
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Dankon :) Mia denaska lingvo estas nederlanda. Kaj vian?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Krinadoodle
Krinadoodle
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Thanks, I just started it and I'm already level 2 :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ictram
Ictram
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Nice! Bon┼Łancon kun lerni esperanton! :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/20copamundial14

What is Esperanto, where did it originate?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ictram
Ictram
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It's essentially a constructed language which's intended purpose is to be easy to learn and to be a neutral language for everyone in the world to use. It was created by L.L. Zamenhoff in the 1880's and it has an estimated speaker base of up to 2,000,000 (that's the highest estimate though).

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/20copamundial14

You have no idea how much I wish "which's" were a word.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ictram
Ictram
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Haha I first wanted to write whose but that only aplies to people, but I guess it should have been "of which it's" or something like that? :p

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/20copamundial14

a constructed language, its intended purpose being to keep it simple and quick for someone to pick up

Whadaya think?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ictram
Ictram
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Sounds much better :p Altough Zamenhoff didn't just create it to be easy but also for it to function as a lingua franca for the world, altough he kind of failed in that regard.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/20copamundial14

Thank you for replying. Is it used in official situations as a middle-ground?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ictram
Ictram
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Not really, it's mostly for hobbyists. It also isn't recognized by any country as an official language. The userbase is dedicated to the language though, and come from all kind of countries around the world, so it can be useful for building connections.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/yurtsnoozer

For English speakers Danish or Norwegian has got to be the easiest. The grammar is simple like English with no complicated declensions. They have an awful lot in common with English such as whole phrases sounding and grammatical bits being similar such as the tenses. And in common with English quite a few Latin loan words also and where they have used a Germanic route to a new concept such as befolkning for population, it is quite easy to see befolkning as a word we might have developed out of English be-folk-and the ing ending anyway. Lot of stuff for you to hang mental hooks on in ways that there are not with languages that are much more distantly related.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lelieblad

First of all, a language that you love is 10x easier to learn than one that you're not that motivated to learn. Otherwise yes, I guess Esperanto is the easiest.

But despite that, I'd still vote for Dutch as one of the best languages for an English speaker to learn. Why?

  1. It's said to be easiest natural language for English speakers to learn in general. (Okay, Afrikaans might be easier. I'm not sure.)
  2. Once you know Dutch, you'll be able to understand most of Afrikaans, which is like getting two languages in one! With a bit more study, you could be decently fluent in them both. (Afrikaans has several million speakers too).
  3. It makes learning German much easier. English - Dutch - German is easier than learning German then Dutch.
  4. It's just cool (but I'm totally biased here.)

So if you do plan on learning more than one new language, I'd totally do Dutch, but only if you want to. Remember, it's much easier to learn a language that you like. :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lelieblad

Just looked up Afrikaans and apparently at least 17 million people speak it. 28 million people speak Dutch, so that makes for possibly 45 million+ people in total that you could speak with.

This is for all of the people who think Dutch is somewhat obscure. It's not that obscure really.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NoNameNoFace

Depends on your native language and how interested in the language you are really. You wont be able to learn a language if you dont care much for it and dont use it regularly. Just whatever language is within the same language family is often the easier in the grammatical sense. However some languages take many words from other languages. For instance English is a Germanic language so it shares some similarity to other Germanic languages (German, Dutch, Afrikaans, Norwegian) however it borrows many Romance language (French, Spanish, Latin) words. Genderless languages are likely easier in the sense you do not have to memorize the gender of words which pretty much would leave an English speaker with Afrikaans if combined with the previous suggestion although unless you know someone from a few small countries in Africa you would be unlikely to make use of this to keep practice. Although gender is less of a problem in some languages like Norwegian where the feminine use of words is fairly optional in certain dialects. Although English did not take its words directly from Norwegian, English has a few Old Norse derived words in it so it shares a common root language.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/zekecoma

For me as an English native. I would say Dutch, German, Afrikaans, and Spanish.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NoNameNoFace

I don't consider Spanish easy myself. The native speakers speak incredibly fast and some words aren't so easy to pronounce. Other than that its easier.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/zekecoma

I'm a native English speaker, and I'm picking it up quite easily. I have still have trouble with the 'rr' sound, but I'm doing better than I was once at with it.

Every language is spoken fast if you really think about it.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Azure_Waters
Azure_Waters
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If you want my personal opinion, and trust me.. my opinions can get very personal, I would honestly say any north germanic language ( that is not icelandic because that's gnarly). Swedish, Norwegian and Danish are awesome for people who speak English natively! Good luck! ^_^ oh yes and dutch as well!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deadpool1.

It would make sense that Germanic languages are easy 2 lern

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deadpool1.

Whatever the easiest language is, it might not be English. Even though I speak English, we must remember thet Latin came before the English language

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/yurtsnoozer

What is the significance of saying: "Latin came before English" by the way? Latin is the ancestor of the Romance Languages but not the ancestor of English. English simply has quite a lot of Latin "borrowings" but as Latin dominated Europe long after the Romans had gone (through church and education) that is not surprising. Many other languages have a lot of Latin borrowings too. Indeed as English is in a similarly pre-eminent postion nowadays, so many languages have English borrowings: Danish: Koncept, German: Lokomotiv and so on are examples of Latin borrowings in those languages of which there are many, albeit not as many as English has.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deadpool1.

Quite true, however, what I meant by that was that Latin comes closer to the Indo-European language than the English language does. The Indo-European language is pretty much the base of all languages.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deadpool1.

From that Germanic languages branch out

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/yurtsnoozer

I am sure you meant the base of most European languages? There are of course many other language families and any relationship with them is much further back.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deadpool1.

Of course. The Japanese language did not come from the Indo-European language. But from it we have languages such as the Spanish, Italian, and Danish language.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/yurtsnoozer

The original question was: are there any languages which are significantly easier? Obviously, it depends upon what language you know in the first place. At an underlying level all languages are the same, that is they are based upon the logic of "deep" grammar. How and when that evolved is a matter for some conjecture. A big difference between human language and animal communication is that the sounds are discrete (syllables) and can be ordered any way to give an almost infinite series of combinations; meaning is granted by mutual agreement (learned and understood). A parrot can speak for example but it has not inherant understanding (even if it can do what you tell it). Language represents a significant leap in evolution because it enables abstract thought and for that thought to be communicated. Languages have diversified into different sounds, orders of words and degrees to which additional meaning is granted by adding or ordering words ("higher level" grammar). In theory Xhosa for Vietnamese speakers should be as easy as Nahuatl for Arabic speakers and so on. But if you are trying to learn a language closer to your own then clearly there may be less to learn. That said Icelandic is probably the closest modern language to Old English but it is probably quite a hard language for an English speaker to learn because it has "a lot of grammar". English has changed a lot in a 1000 years and Icelandic relatively little. So closeness on the tree of language evolution is only a partial guide. The other Scandinavian languages seem to have developed along similar lines to English in some ways with much more simplified grammar.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deadpool1.

What if you didn't know any language (except some weird form of grunts and screaming) and you wanted to learn one? What would be the easiest one?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Krinadoodle
Krinadoodle
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Well, you wouldn't really be like LEARNING it persay (because you wouldn't really be translating the new language into your native one), you would just be exposed to it and eventually catch on. And wow, that seems so hard to do. We've all done it once before, though, when we were babies :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deadpool1.

Of course. You would be associating words with sights. The same way Sullivan trained Keller

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/yurtsnoozer

You could take a look at this in wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Critical_period_hypothesis

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deadpool1.

thanks!

2 years ago