All entries for Thursday 25 May 2006

May 25, 2006

multilingual animals

Writing about web page http://www.alextoys.com/animaltalk/index.htm

I've always been fascinated by the way speakers of different languages "hear" different sounds of animals. How come the English hear "cockadoodledoo" and the Germans hear "Kikiriki"??

And can you say one is more accurate (one is 5 syllables and one is just 4)?

rooster

There's a brilliant website that I've just discovered where by clicking on animals and flags you can hear demonstrations of all sorts of animal noises.
animal talk

I love the fact that cows in most languages say moo (or something similar) – but in the Netherlands they say boo!! Are they scarier over there? I can imagine them hiding behind hedges and jumping out to boo at unwitting passers–by…
cows

And to give you an idea of the variety around the world– compare the humble croaking frog.
The following are approximations of what the different nationalities seem to be saying

  • ra–ka–ka–keh in Hungary
  • va–va in Israel
  • coca coca in the Philippines
  • graba graba in Brazil
  • kwa kwa kwa in China
  • co co con in Poland
    frog

There's another interesting website with more languages and more animals, but only in transcriptions and not with demonstrations:
link


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