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Questions tagged [mutual-intelligibility]

For questions about groups (usually pairs) of languages that allow its speakers to comprehend another language of a pair without special training or deliberate learning. Not for translation or identification requests.

2
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1answer
105 views

How intelligible are German and Dutch to each other?

I'm asking this because I stumbled upon what I believe is a Dutch copy of The Brothers Grimm at a used book store. I initially thought it was archaic German and looked over it to see if I could make ...
4
votes
1answer
96 views

Are any of the 'interslavic' constructed languages actually intelligible with any natural slavic languages?

Long ago, I thought about learning Slovianski (one of a family of auxlangs meant for speakers of Slavic languages), purely because I thought it may give me the ability to understand (to some extent) ...
8
votes
1answer
176 views

Can modern Icelanders really read the Prose Edda?

I've heard that Icelandic has changed so little in the past 1,000 years that even millennium-old texts (such as the prose Edda) are still intelligible to modern people who speak Icelandic. Is this ...
4
votes
1answer
109 views

Do speakers with heavy accents find it easier to understand their own accent than a more standard accent?

As a speaker of a fairly standard North American English accent, I occasionally find it difficult to understand people who speak with a heavy accent. I've always been curious about what exactly makes ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Are Tamil and Malayalam mutually intelligible?

I have read that Malayalam originates from Middle Tamil. This leads me to ask whether Tamil and Malayalam are mutually intelligible. Or perhaps just partly, or asymmetrically? I prefer either answers ...
2
votes
2answers
663 views

Are Tajik and Persian mutually intelligible?

I know that the Persian language family has three branches: Persian, Dari and Tajik-Persian. Is the Persian of Iran mutually intelligible with Tajik? And how does the Tajik Cyrillic alphabet differ ...
1
vote
1answer
347 views

Why are German and Dutch preschool TV shows so unintelligible to English speakers?

I understand that English has a whole lot of Romance and Latin influence whereas Dutch has less and German has very little. This is the main reason why English is so different compared to its mainland ...
0
votes
1answer
940 views

Can Italians understand dialects such as Ligurian and Venetian?

Can Italians speaking the modern Italian dialect (which is derived from Tuscan) understand old Italian dialects such as Ligurian and Venetian? What would the English analog be? Would it be like ...
4
votes
1answer
221 views

What quantity-level of mutual intelligible words are needed for claiming dialects to be languages?

There are much debate of when two dialects become languages. Apart from non-linguistic reasons like politics, quality of understanding is most often used to decide whether two dialects are effectively ...
0
votes
1answer
942 views

How much Lithuanian and Romanian languages are mutually intelligible?

I have heard that Lithuanian and Romanian are related. As such, I want to know, to what extent they are mutually intelligible.
13
votes
2answers
2k views

Are Old French and French mutually intelligible?

In Les visiteurs (The Visitors), two Frenchman from 1123 are transported to 1993. In the movie, the visitors from 1123 can understand the speech of the modern French people in 1993, and vice versa, ...
4
votes
12answers
12k views

What are the exact relations between Slovak and Slovene?

The former seems to have more speakers, while the latter seems to possess the elder history. Slovak said to be a West Slavic language, while Slovene seems to belong to the South Slavic group (...
16
votes
3answers
8k views

Is there a list of mutually intelligible languages?

Is there a list of languages which are mutually intelligible (i.e. a speaker of A can understand language B and [perhaps] vice versa)? And would this beg the question of whether they really are ...
16
votes
2answers
2k views

How can mutual intelligibility be measured?

What ways do we have of measure the mutual intelligibility of two given languages? It's easy enough to realise if there is a degree of mutual intelligibility between your own language variety and ...