On 25/02/2017 4:10 AM, The Real Bev wrote:
On 02/23/2017 06:03 AM, Wolf K. wrote:
I'm Austrian and English. Grew up bi-lingual (tri-lingual, actually,
since our local spoken Austrian was different enough from standard
German that a linguist would call it another language). Learned Latin,
French and Spanish. Never learned a Slavic language, unfortunately. I
taught courses in English language (history, grammar, rhetoric), as well
as the usual "language and literature".
I defer to your expertise. I took 4 years of French, 2 years of
Spanish, one year of Latin and 6 weeks of German -- I dropped the class
because I was just sick and tired of declensions and genders. I'm sure
there's an explanation for why a girl is neuter and a rock (or something
equivalent, it's been a long time) is masculine...
I did a lot of reading as a kid, and I suspect that that's where I got
my 'feel' for English grammar. Until I took French in 9th grade
(roughly 14 years old) I had paid no attention at all to formal English
grammar, possibly because I didn't need to in order to get 100% on tests
just because I KNEW stuff :-(
Back in the 60's, the Good Samaritan Nuns run my primary school (which
had class sizes of around 50 kids in each room), but they didn't have
enough rooms to run Sixth grade for everyone, so the Grade Six boys were
sent across the road to the Marist Brothers regional Secondary Boys School.
There, in Sixth Grade, amongst other subjects, we studied French and
Latin. If you did any good at them, you continued in the Languages
stream, otherwise you went into the Maths/Sciences stream. Yeah!!
A couple of years later, my mum thought it would be good for me to have
a language, so I used to go to another school on Saturday mornings, for
about a year, to learn Italian.
About the only thing I can remember about Saturday School was, one day,
on the way home, a guy asked if I had a *match* to light his cigarette,
but I had my six transistor radio (anybody remember them?? About the
size of a house brick. Just a bit different to today!!) to my ear,
listening to the description of the Cricket *match* that was supposed to
be happening, but was delayed due to rain.
So I told the guy that the *match* start was delayed .... and the guy
looked at me strangely .... it was about a minute later that I realised
what had gone on!!
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