Agree. I think they would probably add Mum to the alternate answers. I have heard of that happening before. Usually they notify you by email if they do. As for "americocentric", I think Duolingo is a British company, no? The american flag is curious, though. Maybe they just think more people would be interested in learning American English rather than British English, which has too many dialects to keep track of anyway. They'd be right about that. There is just more of us, so there! ;)
I expect they have by now, my comment was a year ago after all!
Nope, Duo was started in Pittsburgh and still has their HQ there - I recall there have been posts in the past justifying their use of the US flag as the US has the highest population of English speakers and AE is indeed more prevalent globally than BE, plus they do the same for Portuguese, giving it Brazil's flag, but that logic falls down a bit when you spot that Spanish keeps the Spanish flag despite Mexico having ~3x the population. I believe that may be because American English and Brazilian Portuguese have "mutated" enough to be noticeably different to their home tongues, however Latin American Spanish is still fairly true to its roots. Ultimately it's an American company and they can do as they please, they're hardly breaking any laws, and only the most nationalistic kneejerker Brits would refuse to use such a great product for that reason alone (that kind of person probably isn't particularly interested in foreign languages anyway).
On dialects, indeed there are a lot but there is only one "true" form and they all adhere to the same written form, the only real difference is in pronunciation and slang words used, which are usually the last thing that learners master (if at all) anyway. Few British English courses would ever try to cover them, much like you'll have a tough job finding a Deep South American English course! Saying that, non-natives who do go the extra mile and delve into the dialects will always get kudos, case in point: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j2fSaSR6elQ
Ah, I did not know they started in Pittsburgh. That blows my theory about why they concentrate mostly on European languages. About the Spanish flag, Latin America doesn't have a flag, so it makes sense to use Spain's. They do also use a Central American pyramid, though, so I suppose that is a compromise.
I've heard most Europeans prefer to learn American English to British. I should check that online but, frankly, I'm too lazy to. Maybe later.
i think they have the american flag for english because of pronunciation. Way you pronounce some words in british english is different than in the american variant. (like you said)
Most people who speak british english live in the uk. But Americans and to certain extent Canadians adhere to american english. So there is a bigger chance that the people who are going to contribute to the english learning will speak the american variant. So when they pronounce a word it is going to be in the american way. So if they had the union jack there might be backlash as it would not be consistent? Who knows.
In English, "mom and dad" is a linguistic freeze, so it'd be super weird to say "dad and mom." In my experience, it's common for other languages to also have this same phrase as a linguistic freeze (in one order or the other, depending on the language). Is this also a linguistic freeze in Esperanto, or do speakers generally just use whichever order they're used to (likely replicating the freeze from their native language)?
For what it's worth, I don't think it'd be that strange to say "dad and mum" (or "dad and mom", for Americans).
Yes, more common to say "mum and dad", but the other way around still gets just shy of a million hits when I google it as a set phrase (with the "mum and dad" order getting around nine million hits, for comparison). So I don't think a minority of 1:9 constitutes "super weird".
It occurred to me that my son tends to use that order (dad and mum), and it may be simply that the "dad and mum" ordering is used more readily by those who (like my son) have a father that features more in their life than their mother does.
Kind of like how when you refer to a couple, it's quite natural to put the name of the person you know best, first.
The strong preference in English for "mom and dad" is actually documented in linguistic research. The rule in English for freezes related to people tends to be men and elders first, but mothers are an exception. Your son's usage of "dad and mum" isn't wrong; it's just an exception to the trend among English speakers. Some people also sometimes use one phrase for their parents and a different one for the general concept of opposite-sex parentage. I, for example, have four parents, so I say "parents" for my own, but "mom and dad" when talking to others in a more general sense, even though I have never had a "mom and dad" as one unit in my own life.
It's entirely possible though that the "mom and dad" freeze could be weakening, especially within specific groups. Certainly, it's not actually all that safe to assume everyone has one mother and one father, and there seems to be a cultural shift happening to expand our collective ideas of what a "family" can look, so maybe it'll sound weirdly specific to use "mom and dad" as a general term in the future.
As a side note, Google's "" search actually brings up results that don't include the set phrase now (also happening in searches with multiple words where they'll show you results missing one of the words; Google thinks they know what you're searching for better than you do), so it's not the most reliable source for comparing usage. I still like checking their search trends though, and there is a pretty clear preference for "mom and dad" in English (which is reversed in search trends in other languages, such as Dutch):
As I understand, Alareshu meant a collocation.
An idiom is an expression, which meaning isn't the same as meaning of its parts combined; its meaning is either more than that or something different altogether. A collocation, on the other hand, means exactly what one would expect knowing the meaning of the particular words, and still its frequency of occurrence is greater than other possible ways of expressing the same thing.
So on the one hand you have the root and normal affixes: “patr-” regarding parentage, patr·o is father, patr·in·o — mother, ge·patr·o·j — parents, patr·uj·o — homeland, el·patr·ig·i — to exile etc.
There are also two infixes “-ĉj-”, “-nj-”, which are a little bit different. They're used to create affectionate forms (mainly in regard to names and nouns of family relationship) and are attached to first few letters of the word (“-ĉj-” for males and “-nj-” for female).
So we have:
- patr·o (father) and pa·ĉj·o (daddy)
- patr·in·o (mother) and pa·nj·o (mummy)
- av·o (grandfather) and a·ĉj·o or av·ĉj·o (grandpa)
- onk·in·o (aunt) and o·nj·o or onkli·nj·o (auntie)
- Johan·o (John) and Jo·ĉj·o (Johnny)
- Barbar·a (Barbara) and Ba·nj·o (Barbie, Babs, Barb?)
- Miĥael·o (Michael) and Mi·ĉj·o (Mike)
- Mari·a (Maria) and Ma·nj·o (Mary)
Note the main difference: places of attaching these infixes doesn't imply that there are roots “pa-”, “o-” or “Mi-”, so the proper understanding of these nicknames always have to come from the context.
I still don't understand completely. I have two possible interpretations of what you said:
1 We have the root 'pa,' which is masculinized using '-cxj-'?
2 Or are you saying 'pa' is the masculine root, which is given the "familiar, nicknames, etc." extension '-cxj-' because it is male, or '-nj-' when it is a female?
The first option would conflict with the fact that all roots are male. I think the second option would also conflict, as there are no gender dependent inflections, except for the inflection indicating gender.
>-ĉjo >masculine affectionate form; the root is truncated >Joĉjo (Jack); paĉjo (daddy); fraĉjo (bro); amiĉjo (dear friend); la iĉjoj (the 'boys')
>-njo >feminine affectionate form; the root is truncated
>Jonjo (Joanie); panjo (mommy); anjo (granny); onjo (aunty); vanjo (nanny, from 'nurse'); aminjo (dear friend); la injoj (the 'girls', from -ino or -ido)
There was a short explanation, in the Tips and notes section for Common Phrases (the 3rd Skill in the Esperanto tree), which may be a bit confusing as panĉjo and panjo aren't introduced until Family (the 17th Skill in the Esperanto tree).
ESPERANTO NAMES People who speak Esperanto generally use their own names, but sometimes choose a name that is easier to pronounce in Esperanto, or an Esperanto nickname.
Names for men in Esperanto generally end in -o,
and nicknames in -ĉjo.
A man named David could decide to use
David, Davido, or the nickname Daĉjo.
For a woman, Esperanto names can end in -o or -a,
and nicknames end in -njo.
A woman named Susan could use
Susan, Suzano, Suzana, or the nickname Sunjo.
In my opinion, both "Lilla Esperantoordboken" (in Swedish; "La malgranda Esperantovortaro"; I've got one myself), and the Universala vortaro de la lingvo internacia Esperanto in Fundamento de Esperanto, have more thorough explanations on how -ĉj- and -nj- work.
Below are the explanations from the latter:
[ Esperanto français | English | Deutsch | русский | polski ]
(do note that the final -o's (and -a's, and -e's, and -i's) are left out, throughout the Universala vortaro!)
après les 1-5 premières lettres d’un prénom masculin lui donne un caractère diminutif et caressant; ex. Miĥael' ― Mi'ĉj' |
affectionate diminutive of masculine names; e.g. Johan' John ― Jo'ĉj' Johnnie |
den 1-5 Buchstaben eines männlichen Eigennamens beigefügt verwandelt diesen in ein Kosewort; z. B. Miĥael' ― Mi'ĉj'; Aleksandr' ― Ale'ĉj' |
приставленное къ первымъ 1-5 буквамъ имени собственнаго мужскаго пола, превращаетъ его въ ласкательное; напр. Miĥael' ― Mi'ĉj'; Aleksandr' ― Ale'ĉj' |
dodane do pierwszych 1-5 liter imenia własnego męzkiego rodzaju zmienia je w pieszczotliwe; np. Miĥael' ― Mi'ĉj'; Aleksandr' ― Ale'ĉj' .
après les 1-5 premières lettres d’un prénom féminin lui donne un caractère diminutif et caressant; ex. Mari' ― Ma'nj'; Emili' ― Emi'nj' |
diminutive of female names; e. g. Henriet' Henrietta ― Henri'nj', He'nj' Hetty |
den ersten 1-5 Buchstaben eines weiblichen Eigennamens beigefügt, verwandelt diesen in ein Liebkosungswort; z. B. Mari' ― Ma'nj'; Emili' ― Emi'nj' |
приставленное къ первымъ 1-5 буквамъ имени собств. женскаго пола, превращаетъ его въ ласкательное; напр. Mari' ― Ma'nj'; Emili' ― Emi'nj' |
dodane do pierwszych 1-5 liter imienia własnego rodzaju źeńskiego zmienia takowe w pieszczotliwe; np. Mari' ― Ma'nj'; Emili' ― Emi'nj' .
Take the original (Esperanto) name, keep the first 1-5 letters, then add ĉj/nj, and end it with the final o.
With this, the female name Anna can become e.g. A'nj'o → Anjo.
Recently I've spotted a little inconsistency in the Fundamento de Esperanto, regarding these affectionate suffixes.
The Universala Vortaro indeed tells to attach -ĉj- and -nj- to the initial 1–5 letters of the word, but in the Ekzarcaro there's an information of the first 1–6 letters. There's even an example of the nickname Vilhelĉjo, which is using the bigger number.
So it is laŭfundamenta to use 6 initial letters. :)
... and "Lilla Esperantoordboken" says
"(lagt till de 2-5 första bokstäverna i ett mansnamn)"
"(lagt till de 2-5 första bokstäverna i ett kvinnonamn)"
(i.e. "added to the first 2-5 letters in a man's/woman's name" - which would have had an "interesting" effect on the example I gave:
Anna → An'nj'o = Annjo ← double-n!),
so my guess is it's basically "the first part of the name", or "the first / first few syllable/s of the name".
What kind of credibility does this source have? :D
According to the Fundamento using 1–6 letters is correct. However, one could indeed argue (especially because of this rule being given slightly differently in two parts of the Fundamento) that the idea was not to limit the number of letters precisely, rather than to express that it should be one or two syllables (at least one letter, no more than two syllables).
I mean, technically, being married means you're someone's spouse. If "mom and dad are married" doesn't imply they're married to each other, then "mom and dad are spouses" doesn't imply they're spouses to each other either. But that's a minor thing.
Unless "Geedzoj" specifically refers to the two people being married to one another?
To answer your question properly, let me say few more things. The prefix ge- is defined in the “Universala Vortaro” (part of the “Fundamento de Esperanto”) as:
ge’ les deux sexes réunis; ex. patr’ père ― ge’patr’o’j les parents (père et mère) | of both sexes; e. g. patr’ father ― ge’patr’o’j parents | beiderlei Geschlechtes; z. B. patr’ Vater ― ge’patr’o’j Eltern; mastr’ Wirth ― ge’mastr’o’j Wirth und Wirthin | обоего пола, напр. patr’ отецъ ― ge’patr’o’j родители; mastr’ хозяинъ ― ge’mastr’o’j хозяинъ съ хозяйкой | obojej płci, np. patr’ ojciec ― ge’patr’o’j rodzice; mastr’ gospodarz ― ge’mastr’o’j gospodarstwo (gospodarz i gospodyni).
And in the “Ekzarcaro” of the “Fundamento de Esperanto” (§36 is about ge-) it is used only in plural (bolding ge- made by me):
Patro kaj patrino kune estas nomataj gepatroj. ― Petro, Anno kaj Elizabeto estas miaj gefratoj. ― Gesinjoroj N. hodiaŭ vespere venos al ni. ― Mi gratulis telegrafe la junajn geedzojn. ― La gefianĉoj staris apud la altaro. ― La patro de mia edzino estas mia bopatro, mi estas lia bofilo, kaj mia patro estas la bopatro de mia edzino. ― Ĉiuj parencoj de mia edzino estas miaj boparencoj, sekve ŝia frato estas mia bofrato, ŝia fratino estas mia bofratino; mia frato kaj fratino (gefratoj) estas la bogefratoj de mia edzino. ― La edzino de mia nevo kaj la nevino de mia edzino estas miaj bonevinoj. ― Virino, kiu kuracas, estas kuracistino; edzino de kuracisto estas kuracistedzino. ― La doktoredzino A. vizitis hodiaŭ la gedoktorojn P.
Because of the definition of both sexes and only plural examples in the “Fundamento” some people view using ge- in singular as wrong (What would it mean for a single person to be of both sexes? Being a hermaphrodite?). That's also the reason why Duolingo team decided to use it only in plural nouns. However, there's nothing fundamentally wrong about broadening the definition (especially following the pattern occurring internationally), therefore most people use ge- also with singular words, when the gender is unspecified (not known or irrelevant). During last AMA with Bertilo Wennergren (member of the “Akademio de Esperanto”, author of the “Plena Manlibro de Esperanta Gramatiko”) I've asked him about his personal recommendation for ge- with singular nouns and he said he's totally fine with them and himself uses them.
Mallongigante: Yes, you can use ge- prefix for singular nouns as well, e.g. gepatro (parent), gefrato (sibling), geavo (grandparent), genepo (granchild) .
It seems strange that the "affectionate" forms are still relatively complex sounds. I always understood that "Mum", "Dad", "Mama", "Papa" and their equivalents in other languages had caught on and are so common because they are so easy for babies to say! How many babies can say "pacxjo"? Clearly Esperanto is an 'invented' language but it seems rather contrived to define the form that nicknames should take...
Then be welcomed to explore this subject further. I’d suggest you checking out the Slavic languages. ;)
For example in Polish (I’ll give the sound approximation using the Esperanto alphabet) the formal forms are matka (matka) and ojciec (ojĉjec), the familiar forms are mama (mama) and tato, tata (tato, tata), but the affectionate forms are mamusia, mamcia, mamunia (mamuŝja, mamĉja, mamunja) and tatuś, tatko, tatunio (tatuŝ, tatko, tatunjo).
“Geedzoj” is preferred. There’s a rule in Esperanto that all adjacent vowels are separated [by glottal stop], unless the letter “ŭ” is present, which represents a diphthong (i.e, “au” would be pronounced “ah-uu” but “aŭ” is pronounced as “ow”; “eu” is “eh-uu” but “eŭ” is “ew”).