Wednesday, January 25, 2006

More languages. More! More!

It seems that clearly more and more people become interested in creating lessons for

Finished: English, Spanish, French, Russian, Turkish

Coming to finish: Latin
In the middle: Dutch, German
Starting: Hebrew, Estonian, Romanian

Of all Slavonic languages, Russian is by far the most widely spread and spoken as well as being the language that covers the most of the Eurasia region. Russian is categorized under the East Slavonic language tree, next to Ukrainian or Byelorussian and has a solid shared structure with these languages. However, the Russian language has its differences and uniqueness as well as being influenced by other lingual trends.

The importance of the Russian language is not only given by the number of its speakers (around 250 million people) but also because of the economical and political power held by Russia. These factors made Russian become one of the official languages used by the United Nations as well as a means of communication in trade or international affairs.

Being spoken by such a large number of people in such a wide territory, several dialects have formed in the Russian language through out time. Linguists can pin-point dozens of such dialects, but they are usually split up into three main groups, called Northern Russian, Central Russian and Southern Russian.

Learning Russian – Why and how?

The ”why” question is easily answerable. First of all, Russia is a fascinating country with a fascinating culture and at the same extent, hearing it fascinates people. Being an international power nowadays, knowing Russian can give you a boost in your career as more and more businesses are conducted between Russia and the Western world, a thing that was just a few decades ago, thought impossible. Once you’ve learnt such a hard, fascinating language there’s no stopping you into becoming a true polyglot.

A great way to start learning Russian is with the help of the Internet. This comes extremely handy, especially if you don’t have the time or money to start up on some “Learn Russian” courses in your locality. On the Internet though, you are free to learn at your own pace and whenever you want. You can be your own boss (well...teacher) so to speak. There are virtually dozens of free Russian online lessons out there, all you need to do is browse them, pick one that you think will suit you and follow it up close.

If you’re having trouble with your vocabulary improvement pace, you might want to try out some Russian vocabulary games. These games will help you memorize words efficiently and give you a solid vocabulary increase overall. These games are also quite relaxing and fun, which is to your advantage since everything that we learn for fun instead of enforcement is memorized better by our brain.

Articles about Russian in different languages:

The Russian Language (in English)
Lengua Rusa (in Spanish)
Langue russe (in French)
Russische Sprache (in German)
Lingua russa (in Italian)
Russische Taal (in Dutch)
Língua Russian (in Portuguese)
Limba Rusa (in Romanian)
Выучить русский – «зачем» и «как» (in Russian)
تعلّم الروسي - كيف و لماذا؟ (in Arabic)

Articles in Russian about different languages:
История английского языка
Корни испанского языка
Три причины, чтобы начать учить французский
О китайском языке
Что хорошо было бы знать о немецком языке
Язык Восходящего Солнца
Сведения об итальянском языке
Голландский язык – от истоков до наших дней
Выучить русский – «зачем» и «как»
Краткий обзор истории португальского языка
Греция и греческий язык
Краткие сведения об арабском языке
Полезные советы изучающим иврит
Истоки цивилизации
Хинди. История и факты
Корни польского языка
История румынского языка
Турецкий язык. Исторические факты
Происхождение и история чешского языка
Корни украинского языка

Historical facts about the Turkish language

Being one of the greatest European and International powers of the Middle Ages, the Ottoman Empire, which can is the ancestor of modern Turkey spread its conquest and influence through sword and word alike. Although the sword part was definitely used a lot more, the use of the Turkish language in influencing and assimilating new territories is undeniable, since trade, international affairs and other similar aspects were handled in Turkish in South Eastern Europe at that time.

From an ethnic point of view, Turkish is a Turkic language (big surprise, eh?) that developed in the Middle East, stretching all the way to Eastern Europe. From a broader point of view, Turkish is categorized under the Ural-Altaic family of languages, which also includes languages such as Hungarian or Finnish.

Nowadays, Turkish is spoken by roughly 70 million people worldwide, most of which are concentrated in Turkey. Other countries that have strong Turkish speaking communities include Denmark, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Iran, Iraq, Israel and France.

Difficulties in learning Turkish

Regardless of what culture you’re coming from and what languages you might already know, you will probably find Turkish a rather difficult language to learn. This is not to say that you can’t do it if you’re ambitious enough, but the learning process will probably be less smooth than if you’re learning an “easier” language such as say, Spanish, French, English and so forth.

First of all, Turkish writing is quite hard to understand. Back at the start of the 20th century, Turkish writing used the Perso-Arabic script, which was later switched to the Latin script by the so-called “modernizer” of Turkey, Kemal Ataturk. This can still cause confusion at times, although the old Arabic script is rarely used (some consider it extinct even).

Most “Learn Turkish” courses will focus on other aspects rather than start off with the script, the most common starting points being a vocabulary increase and a short insight into the grammar rules of the Turkish language. From a grammatical point of view, Turkish is usually considered quite ordinary in what regards the difficulty with which its rules can be assimilated and understood. The main problems are pronunciation and spelling usually.

But before you can spell or pronounce words, you must know what they mean in the first place. That’s why your first task will have to be to improve vocabulary and memorize words. This can be done through several means. The first would be that you take some free Turkish lessons online, which will naturally improve your base vocabulary as you go deeper in the course. Your second option could be to use translated texts as a means of finding new words and memorizing. Last but not least, if you want a more relaxing, fun approach to the issue, you could try out a few vocabulary games such as puzzles or quizzes. They might not be the most efficient of learning methods, but they combine utility with pleasure, hence they’re a great tool you can use in your Turkish learning process.

Articles about Turkish in different languages:

Facts About The Turkish Language (in English)
Lengua Turca (in Spanish)
Langue turque (in French)
Türkische Sprache (in German)
Lingua turca (in Italian)
Turkse Taal (in Dutch)
Língua Turkish (in Portuguese)
Date istorice legate de limba Turca (in Romanian)
Турецкий язык. Исторические факты (in Russian)
الحقائق التأريخية حول اللغة التركية (in Arabic)

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