40 votes
Accepted

Which language is most similar to Esperanto?

Let me break your question into several parts and answer them one by one. How much would a person not knowing Esperanto understand from a newspaper article in Esperanto? If you are asking solely ...
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19 votes

Which language is most similar to Esperanto?

I found a quick breakdown in the Esperanto.net FAQ: About 75 % of Esperanto's vocabulary comes from Latin and Romance languages (especially French), about 20 % comes from Germanic languages (German ...
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  • 441
17 votes

Why is Icelandic considered harder to learn for English speakers than other North Germanic languages?

According to Beyond Highbrow – Robert Lindsay, Icelandic is very hard to learn, much harder than Norwegian, German or Swedish. Part of the problem is pronunciation. The grammar is harder than German ...
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  • 8,937
13 votes

Which language is most similar to Esperanto?

The majority of Esperanto's original vocabulary came from French, German and English, so if you already speak any of these languages it would certainly give you a head start. According to La deveno ...
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12 votes
Accepted

What differences are there in the difficulty of learning Ukrainian and Russian to a very basic level?

This is a non-scientific answer from a native Ukrainian. I have deliberately removed everything that is not related to language learning, e.g. explanations, historical references, and my ...
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  • 1,353
12 votes
Accepted

Does French Sound Similar to Hebrew?

As you know, there are different strains of modern Hebrew pronunciation, including the two major ones: Ashkenazi and Sephardi (by the names I learned them, anyway). Ashkenazi pronunciation is ...
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11 votes

What are the most common languages among people who DON'T speak English?

If my interpretation of your question as "except for English, what other languages are most often used for communication between people of different nations so that the language used for communication ...
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9 votes

Which language is most similar to Esperanto?

According to the proportion of common lexemes, French, English and Italian are the most similar to Esperanto. The proportion of lexemes that are common to Esperanto and other languages: 91.64 percent ...
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  • 481
9 votes
Accepted

What factors make a language difficult to learn from the learner's POV?

There are lots and lots of factors. I am going to list some of the major ones here: The language you start with: For example, Mandarin Chinese is ranked one of the hardest languages to learn as an ...
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  • 5,198
8 votes

Why is Icelandic considered harder to learn for English speakers than other North Germanic languages?

Other people have already commented on why Icelandic is hard for English speakers. Here are some reasons why it is easy compared to other languages: Icelandic has a relatively huge pop culture, some ...
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8 votes

What are the most common languages among people who DON'T speak English?

Please check Wikipedia's List of languages by number of native speakers. Mandarin is the biggest language, as expected, followed by Spanish, English (which we exclude for this question), Hindi, ...
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8 votes
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How to choose an easy language to learn based on the languages that I already speak

There are several criteria you can use: Mutual intelligibility. You can pick a language that is mutually intelligible with one of these you already know. For example, if you know English, a good ...
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  • 2,244
7 votes

Cognates between French & Spanish?

Edit: I've since been recording these cognates and creating open-source activities. I ended up finding a really good book which lists several cognates between all the Romance Languages. It's called ...
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7 votes
Accepted

How different are Inuktitut and Greenlandic?

They are mutually intelligible to a large degree. I know that from Per Langgård, one of the very few proficient second-language speakers of Greenlandic. He said that when he was in Nunavut, he spoke ...
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  • 2,244
7 votes

What are the most common languages among people who DON'T speak English?

Based on this wikipedia page, I would say your best shot would be to pick a language based on which country has the smallest number of English speakers, then figure out what the most popular websites/...
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  • 377
7 votes

How do I measure the importance of a language?

Yourself. The importance of an language varies from person to person. For me, the most important languages are Vietnamese and English since I use them regularly to speak with family and friends. ...
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  • 5,198
6 votes

What factors make a language difficult to learn from the learner's POV?

I would like to add on to @PythonMaster's answer with this point. Other languages you already know: (Taking Mandarin Chinese from the other answer as well) I personally know Cantonese Chinese so ...
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6 votes
Accepted

According to scientific research, which languages take the least time to learn for a native Japanese speaker?

This language school's website has hour estimates for how long it takes a Japanese speaker to learn various other languages based on their internal studies. I've attempted to translate it. The ...
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  • 176
6 votes
Accepted

Cognates between French & Spanish?

For inherited cognates, my go-to scholarly source is Meyer-Lübke's Romanisches etymologisches Wörterbuch. It is a bit hard to read, because it is in German and has a lot of abbreviations, but it is ...
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5 votes

Which language is most similar to Esperanto?

The closest well known language is Ido. There are some other offsprings that are perhaps closer, but they are all rather esoteric ones. Knowing Ido would give you almost immediate good passive ...
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5 votes

Latin, Italian, or French?

Efficacy: Italian is the way to go here, if you are Spanish speaking. I speak Portuguese myself and it is one of the most natural languages to understand, after Spanish. Speed: Italian as well, for ...
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5 votes

Why is Hungarian considered 'hard'?

A Swedish guy named Frederik (?) talks about the challenges of learnning Hungarian after learning it for roughly a month: In Indo-European languages, there is typically only one present tense, but in ...
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  • 19.2k
5 votes

Why is Hungarian considered 'hard'?

Some ten years ago, I (a native German speaker) started learning Hungarian in an evening course and continued for roughly two years. After English, Polish and Spanish, this was my fourth foreign ...
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5 votes
Accepted

How to comprehend what we read properly?

Failure to understand what you read may be caused either by reader factors or text factors or environmental factors. Often a combination of two or more factors is the reason for misunderstanding. ...
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  • 291
4 votes

What are the most common languages among people who DON'T speak English?

I'd use the same list that Christophe Strobbe referenced, but with a few corrections. As he stated, the top 10 most spoken languages in the world (excluding English), ordered by native speakers, are ...
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  • 8,937
4 votes

What factors make a language difficult to learn from the learner's POV?

In addition to what has been listed by PythonMaster and SMS von der Tann, I would add the availability and quality of resources for studying the language. This includes the availability of courses (...
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4 votes

Cognates between French & Spanish?

Most French words are derived from Latin roots, as are Spanish words. So the languages have a lot of cognates. Of course, words sometimes evolve differently, so having the same etymology doesn't ...
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4 votes

Are some languages inherently easier to learn than others?

Some languages have more complexity in spoken language. For example Russian have more declensions and Arabic have more persons (I, you singular masculine, you singular feminine, you dual, you plural,.....
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  • 306
3 votes

Why is Icelandic considered harder to learn for English speakers than other North Germanic languages?

The first thing that comes to mind is that in Norwegian and Danish, for example, verbs are only conjugated according to tense, and are the same for every person - this renders the language even ...
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  • 151

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