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Re: way-OT: regularity of german v. english [was: Re: OT - Programming Languages w/o English Syntax]

on Mon, 20 Oct 2003 01:40:19PM +0200, David Jardine insinuated:
> On Mon, Oct 20, 2003 at 12:56:37AM -0700, Erik Steffl wrote:
> > csj wrote:
> >
> > >[...]
> > >
> > >Because everybody from the poor war orphan "Hey, Joe, eat!" to
> > >the UN Secretary General speaks it, English has become a rather
> > >tolerant language.  But if the same standard for proper German is
> > >applied to what one considers proper English, then yes, German is
> > >easier to learn.  It's a purer, therefore more consistent
> > >language, than the French-infected English.
> > 
> >   purity has nothing to do with it (not sure what you mean by
> > pure). 

good point -- languages by definition evolve, and the notion of a
"pure" language is utterly ridiculous and meaningless.

> > not sure what your agenda is. english is a a lot simpler than
> > german, 

in what sense?  to learn?  to master?  to write basic sentences in?
to write novels in?  to read novels in?

the two are apples and oranges, my friend, especially when you're
dealing with something that no one can have an objective point of view
on, given different native languages. 

> > the usage of words is simple, the grammar is simple.
> > 
> Depends what you mean by purity.  By European language standards
> it's fairly pure in the sense of not being cluttered up with things
> like redundant inflections, but this is probably because it is
> impure in the sense of having been knocked around by neighbouring
> languages and dialects until there's not much left of it apart from
> what's really necessary to communicate.

you're kidding, right?  if i read you right, you're stating that
"there's not much left of [English] apart from what's really necessary
to communicate"?  on the contrary -- it's one of the richest, least
threadbare languages there is!


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