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"Een taal en een dialect zijn twee verschillende dingen."

Translation:A language and a dialect are two different things.

3 years ago

35 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/tjollans
tjollans
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Iemand moet hier het beroemd aforisme citeren:

"Een taal is een dialect met een leger en een vloot"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MartinLexeq
MartinLexeq
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"A language is a dialect with an army and navy." Max Weinreich.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/TMLN2014
TMLN2014
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"א שפראך איז א דיאלעקט מיט אן ארמיי און פלאט"

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/talideon
talideon
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But the line between the two is very fuzzy.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jiaxiaobo
jiaxiaobo
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Is there a native speaker who cares to comment on what Dutch mean by 'dialect'? This word is thrown around a lot in the NL, people often claiming there exist dozens of dialects in this country alone. However, when you investigate further, by 'dialect' they seem to only be talking about slight variations in pronunciation/spelling and the occasional word/phrase unique to that region.

To my understanding, this is not what makes a dialect. A dialect of one's language is denoted by differences in pronunciation, vocabulary and grammar so markedly different that, when listening to two speakers of another dialect (that you're not familiar with) have a fast albeit typical conversation, you will have trouble following them. E.g.: people from Vancouver and Atlanta have different accents and occasionally use their own terms, but speak the same N.A. dialect. However, a resident of NYC listening to two people from Newcastle go at it, I might (and probably most definitely will) lose the thread of the conversation. I'm not familiar with how they speak and there's just too much difference in usage. If they speak towards me at a normal pace, however, we'll get on fine.

So I think 'dialect' is used incorrectly by many Dutch I've met. There only appear to be a few true dialects in the NL (not dozens) and the rest are just regional accents with a few colloquialisms special to that region. Maybe the word 'dialect' in English doesn't translate exactly into 'dialect' in het Nederlands (??) I'd like to hear an expert comment. Alsjeblieft ~

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RigelKentian

Most people speak Standard Dutch whilst retaining a few elements of the original dialect or language that was spoken in their area. But there still exist many dialects, although sadly fewer and fewer people are able to speak them.

You can hear audio fragments of 8 actual dialects/regional languages here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHmcVjMzS-I

I find all of them difficult or impossible to understand, and I'm a native Dutch speaker :)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Howard
Howard
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Of course, many consider Frisian a different language and it has official status in Friesland/Fryslân.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jiaxiaobo
jiaxiaobo
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Thank you for the comment - very informative. The audio is helpful, too - I hope I can find a video which has the same conversation in all eight, so you can better analyze the differences in how the same thoughts are expressed, pronunciation and vernacular aside...

As I know you know, dialects exist because most people weren't often moving far from their hometowns or regularly talking to/hearing from distant countrymen prior to radio/tv, national curriculum, the highway system, cheap airfare and the internet. So, sure, there were probably a hundred active dialects only a hundred years ago but, as you mention, I am sure they are dying out fast. In fact, they would have to be for society to function in this modern world.

My point was (and you answered this) many Dutch still talk as if there are still hundreds active, dozens in the same province even. But I think most of the time they actually mean 'accent' when they say 'dialect', and that only a handful of real dialects still exist, Fries and Limburgs included. (I find it amusing the video has these two listed as dialects when natives call them separate languages. A bit of a stretch, but what do I know.)

Anyhow, Engels continues to pollute every language worldwide so dialects will be a moot point in a couple generations :) Nogmaals bedankt ~

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/frankk1m
frankk1mPlus
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I don't think it is necessary in a modern world, as you suggested. Otherwise, Norway would be in shambles.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RigelKentian

Geen probleem. I do think that dialects can exist alongside standardized languages, it's no problem being bilingual/bidialectual (if that's a word). But for a long time people did believe they had to stop teaching their children the local dialect.

And yes, it's true that what some people call a dialect may be nothing more than an accent and the occasional dialect word thrown in. But quite a few people will also speak a mix of dialect and standard language and these mixed forms can perhaps be seen as dialects as well. And even if 90-95% of people will speak standard dutch in an area there are still people who speak the original dialect or language (I'm not sure where to draw the line between dialect and language, if Limburgs is a language than West Flemish should be one too) at home or among themselves. How many there are left is hard to say in my opinion. If you, for example, lump all varieties of Low Saxon together as being one dialect or language then you'll end up with a handful of languages/dialects but if you divide Low Saxon into seven dialects as some linguists do then you can end up with several dozen dialects (which I think is a bit of a stretch).

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MarcinTust

There is no standard, widely accepted linguistic definition of dialect, or how it differs from a language. Pretty much the only thing that can be said is that a language or dialect is a manner of speaking shared by a linguistic community; while an idiolect is a consistent manner of speaking used by a person distinct from their wider linguistic community.

In particular, I'd say that Vancouver and Atlanta have substantially different dialects. For example, Southern US dialects exhibit a much more complete th->d transition than is standard in English generally, reminiscent of other germanic languages like Dutch.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/seannami
seannami
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I teach linguistics, and when my students ask me the difference between dialects, vernaculars and languages I have to admit to getting a bit bunny-in-headlights. I personally wouldn't call Canadian vs Southern American English dialects, maybe vernaculars- Southern might be a variety. I'm Australian and I would probably call us a vernacular (we have words that other English speakers don't understand, but they are slang related rather than a fundamental part of the language). Singapore English is a variety. Geordie is moving toward a dialect since it has alot of structure and vocabulary difference to other British Englishes due to the influence of Scandinavian, but at this stage I might call it a variety. Scots could be argued to be a dialect of both Gaelic and English.

I know sometimes the language/dialect distinction can be partly political (Flemish to Dutch, Napolese to Roman/Tuscan Italian- both of these I would probably call varieties (maybe vernacular for Napolese- that was the Italian I learned in school), but I might call Sicilian a dialect) I think the key is that vernaculars are pretty much intelligible to any given speaker of the language and can be distinct to an ethnic group not just a region, a variety is intelligible but has fixed regional distinctions that are lexical/grammatical more than phonetic or colloquial and are often directly influenced by the regions primary language (adding definite articles to proper names in Indian English, for example), a dialect would be identifiable as part of the root language and partly intelligible (more so than genetically related distinct languages) but not enough for an in-depth conversation, and a language is mutually unintelligible for any non speakers (even where the words are the same in some cases, like Dutch/English, since a lot of the shared words have drifted apart semantically).

When someone says any of those that's how I define them in my mind. But since dialect is used to create grouping, solidarity and othering, it gets a little fuzzy.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Howard
Howard
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Many (for example, the Scots Language Forum on Facebook) would argue with you about Scots being a dialect of English. Scots is rather a cousin of English, both having developed from Middle English. Scots is definitely not a dialect of Gaelic. It has borrowed some vocabulary from Gaelic, but they are very different languages.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/NCThom
NCThom
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It's my understanding that Scots is distinctly Germanic, only incidentally incorporating some Celtic elements (similar to standard English), but with much greater remnant Old Norse influence than English (which itself has plenty). Indeed, Scots probably is more Germanic than English, what with all the post-1066 influence on the latter.

Some day I might write an alternative history story that imagines a 21st century world in which Harald Hardrada's 1066 invasion had been successful and William of Normandy's not.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/frankk1m
frankk1mPlus
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This is totally true.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PaulineStinson
PaulineStinson
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According to our standard dictionary, Van Dale, it's a rather broad term and not necessarily linked to location. It might be based on social differences as well.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JeffHK
JeffHKPlus
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Fools rush in where angels fear to tread! This language/dialect discussion is very complex and contentious.

My Dutch colleague told me about an area of eastern Holland where she remembers needing to switch to German because the local variety of Dutch was incomprehensible to her.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/silverthornfire
silverthornfirePlus
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When I first arrived in Holland and knew no Dutch at all, I was pleased when the Dutch boyfriend had to attend a conference in Maastricht and I was invited along because he could not understand the Limburg dialect at all and had to switch to English.

Even in Noord-Brabant there are Brabantse words which are not used elsewhere and a soft G rather than the hard G of the north but recognisable Dutch to the rest of the country.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jiaxiaobo
jiaxiaobo
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Came across this sentence again and within Rigel's last (and very informative, thank you) post lies therein the rub: "it's true that what some people call a dialect may be nothing more than an accent and the occasional dialect word thrown in." / "I'm not sure where to draw the line between dialect and language."

Does a native speaker care to offer their definition of 'dialect' in the Dutch language? It doesn't appear to have the same usage in English. In English, 'dialect' indicates language so greatly deviated from the standard that it can be almost unintelligible. Rigel's video includes 8 examples (I think - I'd have no idea :)). If truly very difficult to understand for a native Dutch speaker, then these would be true dialects. But many Dutch claim that there are hundreds still active in the country. I suspect they simply mean hundreds of regional accents with some local terms thrown in, not hundreds of variations of Dutch that are mutually unintelligible.

If anyone also cares to define and also speculate numbers of active dialects vs. regional accents, I'd be interested. Groetjes ~

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jamesjiao
jamesjiao
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I think you are looking for the linguistic definition.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jcarlosmjr
jcarlosmjr
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I can never tell the difference between "verschillende" and "andere". Are they always interchangeable? I mean, could we also write "Een taal en een dialect zijn twee andere dingen" and keep the exact same meaning?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tjollans
tjollans
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No, they mean completely different (verschillende) things.

andere: different from the thing we were just discussing - other.

verschillende: different from each other.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jcarlosmjr
jcarlosmjr
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Bedankt!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Mathso2
Mathso2
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...maar waneer wordt een dialect een taal?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BradshawJoshua

Is Afrikaans a dialect, daughter language, or sister language of Dutch?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/seannami
seannami
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Its a daughter language, specifically of Holland dialect, apparently.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mullac1992
mullac1992
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Not according to Max Weinreich!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Matt92HUN
Matt92HUNPlus
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It's weird how many languages can be almost perfectly understood merely by speaking an (or several) other, supposedly different language(s).

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/bobjanova

I was expecting verschiedene here, not verschillende. Is there a difference in meaning between them in a sentence like this when comparing two things?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tjollans
tjollans
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No, but "verschiedene" is German, while "verschillende" is Dutch.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/bobjanova

Haha oops. I guess I had some crossed wires in my mind tonight!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AndrewSnijders

When do we use andere vs verschillende?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mikezephyr
mikezephyr
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Andere is used in the sense of "other", whereas verschillende as "different" and "various"

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/baerghest
baerghest
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Why are there two different discussions of this sentence? cf https://www.duolingo.com/comment/10250564

8 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/xMerrie
xMerrie
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Because there is a sentence you have to translate from English to Dutch and the other way around.

8 months ago