Watch this TV journalist report the news in six languages

As noted here

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Yes…?

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I’m not quite sure what you want me to do with this comment? Elaborate?

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I did not understand how your comment improved the discussion.

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Well, not everyone might be aware that it is normal for people in Luxembourg to be fluent in German, French and Luxembourgish.

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Kind of a shitty attitude. Why would you say that Portuguese a dialect of Spanish, instead of Spanish being a dialect of Portuguese? You’d be wrong in either case mind you, they are both descendants of Latin.

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Yes. English taught at school, the rest comes in with the milk.

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I took it for granted that it would be known or surmised.

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Pau Gasol (NBA basketball player from Spain) once explained to someone I know what languages he’s fluent in (four). He said while he can kind of read Portuguese, he can’t really communicate in Portuguese (listening or speaking).

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Americans speak a dialect of Australian.

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Sounds like one or both parents were employed by the European institutions, either that or one of the international banks that are all over Lux. Either way, the child probably attended a European school and was exposed to even more languages all the time while growing up.

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The two languages look very similar when written down, but sound totally different when spoken. A Spanish speaker could probably learn to speak Portuguese, but there’s a huge barrier to entry, and of course few would even bother, because everyone speaks Spanish, right?

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Almost all languages originating in Europe are dialects of Latin anyway, amirite? :face_with_raised_eyebrow:

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I meant it to be snarky and indefensible. (Now proceeds to defend it)

Spanish and Portuguese have about 90% lexical similarity. And the grammar is very similar too. Once you learn the differences in written form, it’s very easy for a reader fluent in one language to read the other.

Now, the pronunciation is very different, but still mostly phonetic in both languages. However, the variations that exist in both languages in regional, both standard and informal, usage create challenges.

Instead of a political framing of the dialect question, I will go with a linguistic one. They did indeed evolve in a parallel from Vulgar Latin. But, Portuguese is arguably closer to Vulgar Latin and on that basis it could be argued that Portuguese is the big brother to Spanish. Does that make one a dialect? No. Still just being snarky.

Back to the topic at hand. If he learned Portuguese first, it would have been very easy for him to pick up Spanish (or vice verse, of course). This is especially true if you have an intuitive (being a native speaker) understanding of how similar languages can differ (like German and Luxembourgish).

So props to him for learning French (which is a bit easier if you speak Spanish and/or Portuguese). And bigger props to him for learning each of these languages at a level where he can use them on-air to discuss complex topics with confidence and ease.

Change that to Southern Europe (excluding Greece and the Balkans) and I would cautiously agree. In terms of the languages he spoke three of them are of Romance origin and three of Germanic.

He would have learned French before Portuguese because it is an official language in Luxembourg.

I missed that. Yes, so, he learned only 1.5 languages on his own! At least languages that we know he can speak.

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