Language Facts

36 facts tagged with Language Facts

When Washoe, the first chimp to use sign language, was told that her caretaker's baby had died, she signed "CRY."
The Chief Translator for the European Parliament can speak 32 different languages fluently.
Pokémon is Japanese for Pocket Monsters and Chinpokomon (the South Park parody) is Japanese for Penis Monsters.
The word "gorilla" comes from a Greek word that means "a tribe of hairy women".
In 1700s, the deer skin was a common medium of exchange between the trading settlers and the native Red Indians in America. This is how a buck became a slang for a dollar.
More people in Africa speak French than in France itself.
There is a 600 year old 240 paged book called the Voynich Manuscript, that’s written language is still completely unknown today.
Shakespeare invented over 1,700 words that we use today.
Switching letters is called spoonerism. For example, saying "jag of Flapan", instead of "flag of Japan".
Didaskalaeinophobia is the fear of going to school.
The equivalents of the English saying "That's Greek to me" are "This appears to be Spanish" (German), "This is Chinese to me" (Dutch), "It's German to me" (Philippines), "It's Hebrew" (Finnish), "It's Chinese to me" (Hebrew), "Sounds like Mars language/These are chicken intestines" (China).
Iceland has been so culturally isolated through history since the Vikings, that compared to other Scandinavian counties, people who speak Icelandic can still read the old Norsk sagas.
The word 'mile' is derived from the Latin word for 1,000 - the number of paces it took the average Roman!
The word 'mortgage' comes from a French law term that means 'death pledge'.
Thinking in a foreign language makes decisions more rational.
In Denmark, "Fart-kontrol" means "Speed check".