130

Yes, it actually is a Finnish word used by the Finnish people. ThisisFinland is a site for the promotion of Finland: It is associated with the Finnish Government. Produced by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland and published by the Finland Promotion Board This is Finland - About Us Regarding kalsarikännit, they claim: The feeling when you are ...


72

I agree with @RedGrittyBrick's negative answer to the strict interpretation of @Carlo_R's question, i.e. whether reading Classical Chinese is no more difficult than reading modern Chinese for a person educated in modern-day China. However, I think that the question, in spirit at least, admits a looser, but still interesting interpretation, that is "Whether ...


62

The name, Arkansas, is a French pronunciation of a Siouxan word meaning "land of downriver people". It is pronounced: /ˈɑrkənsɔː/ ar-kən-saw In 1881, the Arkansas General Assembly passed Concurrent Resolution No. 4. The resolution was further modified in 1947 as Arkansas Code 1 April 105, and reads thusly: Whereas, confusion of practice has ...


52

It's a real word (a compound word fromed from kalsari(t) (underwear) and känni (drunkenness), both rather colloquial versions of these words) and can be found in the online dictionary of the Institute for the Languages of Finland (the institute in charge of standardization of languages used in Finland). The word is described as: kalsarikänni ark. ...


48

No. Thomas Edison is in fact credited with the first use of the word Hello on the telephone, and the etymology of the word is well documented. Furthermore, Graham Bell was engaged to Mabel Gardiner Hubbard at the time of the first phone call (and in fact had been courting her for some time), who he eventually went on to marry. There is, in fact, a Snopes ...


43

Can Chinese people read the literature of 2,500 years ago as easily as yesterday's newspaper? No Simplified Chinese The communist government of China changed the writing system to a simplified form. Consequently, Chinese people educated in communist china cannot easily read Chinese material written in pre-communist times or in non-communist regions†. The ...


38

Doesn't look like it. The most likely source of the quote is The Science of Swearing by Timothy Jay and Kristin Janschewitz or possibly Dr. Neel Burton's Hell Yes: The 7 Best Reasons for Swearing or possibly the summation by Psych2Go which draws on both of them: The basic premise that is put forth is that those who cuss are seen as more loyal, trustworthy,...


31

Although this doesn't answer your question directly, I think it does a good job of answering indirectly. Research shows a strong correlation between vocabulary and general intelligence. So does using big words make you appear smart, maybe, but having a high level of vocabulary (and being able to use it) would indicate that you actually are smarter. The key ...


28

SUMMARISED ANSWER To be able to answer the question, a baseline measurement needs to be established. What does it mean to be multilingual/monolingual? How do you measure populations? Where does the data come from? Who is being compared in a "more likely" scenario? American to another Westerner, or to an average global citizen? There are no reliable ...


27

Bill Bryson did not make this claim. In Chapter 12 of his book he writes: As one congressman quite seriously told Dr. David Edwards, head of the Joint National Committee on Languages, "If English was good enough for Jesus Christ, it's good enough for me," [Quoted in the Guardian, April 30, 1988] Dr J. David Edwards was the former Executive Director of ...


27

Melania Trump can speak English perfectly well, well enough for the American news media. Here are examples of interviews with her with and without Donald. In all of them she speaks English without any trouble and is perfectly understood: She does have an accent MSNBC interview with Mika Brzezinski ABC interview with George Stephanopoulos ABC interview ...


26

According to the US government publication 14th Annual report of the Bureau of Ethnology (1896): It is very doubtful if the "pale face" of romance ever existed in the Indian mind Instead, the publication gives the names various tribes used to refer to whites, and the nearest English translations. Terms translating as "yellow hides", "white skins", "...


20

According to Google Translate, "Homeland is Racist" will translate to "الوطن عنصري", which you can compare to the graffiti: From this article These do look very similar. In fact, the only difference is the ي - or yā’. The written one is underlined, and the printed has two dots. This is likely a frequent difference, as there is no letter in the alphabet ...


19

I have to admit I only stumbled upon this question due to the activity on Jeff Blaine's post. However, it did spark enough interest for me to do a little poking into the matter. Honestly, I can't say there's nothing to it, but it hasn't exactly knocked my socks off so to speak. "Plausible but not conclusive" really gets to the heart of it. Based on ...


19

No. As explained in the 1970 book Politics in India, page 146, endnote 11: A myth has gained currency that Hindi became the official language of the Indian Union by a majority of only one vote. That this is no more than a 'legend," based on a controversial vote at one stage in the discussion in the Congress Assembly Party on what numerals to use in ...


18

A biography of Giuseppe Caspar Mezzofanti was written in 1858. Charles William Russell, Life of the Cardinal Mezzofanti (PDF). In a chapter starting on page 457, Russell attempts to skeptically evaluate the claims. He finds several challenges including: How many words do you need to know in order to claim knowledge of a language? When are two dialects ...


18

Depends what you mean by "speaking English". There are reports that 250-300m Chinese people are learning English. However, that doesn't mean that they speak it fluently. Just how many millions are there? China’s huge English-knowing population of 200–350 million is often cited as evidence of the language being nativized in the world’s most populous ...


18

According to NPR's Codeswitch, the term racism meaning "discrimination or prejudice based on race", was used before 1927. The term as used in the picture you show seems to have a different connotation from the more common one: The Oxford English Dictionary's first recorded utterance of the word racism was by a man named Richard Henry Pratt in 1902. ...


17

According to 2010 figures in Wikipedia (drawn from a variety of sources), the USA is top with India second, Nigeria third and the UK fourth. China is way down in 17th place. USA - 251,338,301 - 95.81% of the population (age 5+) India - 125,226,429 - 11.38% of the population (age 5+) China - 10,000,000 - 0.83% of the population (age 5+) There is a note that ...


17

Is dyslexia unheard of in Spain? It's heard of, as dyslexia has much broader meaning than just phonetic problems. There is for example FEDIS (Spanish Dyslexia Federation), which advocates for special treatment of children with dyslexia in Spanish education system. However, there is grain of truth in this. Indeed Spanish children affected by dyslexia have ...


17

No, the text was not generated entirely by a computer program. Humans worked with the algorithm to generate the sentences, selected the ones they liked best, edited them into a story, and even added some of their own. Botnik's tweet describes their code as "predictive keyboards"--the same sort of technology that phones without full keyboards use to guess ...


15

The Lojban site seems to clarify, indicating that yes, it has succeeded in at least being syntactically unambiguous (emphasis mine): Lojban has an unambiguous grammar (proven by computer analysis of a formal grammar with YACC), pronunciation, and morphology (word forms). [1] The person who reads or hears a Lojban sentence is never in doubt as to what ...


15

The folks at testyourvocab.com are trying to find out just that. You don't have to fill out their test. The FAQ and the details page cover what you're looking for.


15

Yes, Dr. David Edwards was the Executive Director of the Joint National Committee for Languages and the National Council for Languages and International Studies (JNCL/NCLIS) for 31 years. His Ph.D. is in political science. It is doubtful that Dr. David Edwards made such a claim. His organization promotes multilingualism (from the interview linked above). ...


14

No, Richard Dawkins did not invent the term. "Lord Privy Seal" is a reference to a parody of the practice performed by David Frost, on The Frost Report in 1966. Since then, the trope has been known by other terms, such as B Roll Rebus. Webster's Online Dictionary acknowledges this usage and the etymology: The term "Lord Privy Seal" (as in "not bad, but ...


14

At least in the case of Europe and the U.S., statistics do exist that directly answer this question. Those statistics simply aren't the ones from the censuses. In 2013, a Gallop poll found that 34% of Americans could hold a conversation in at least one second language. In 2012, a European Commission survey found that 54% of Europeans could hold a ...


14

Yes, they did, as far as I can tell. I was looking for references to this in German media/academic publications, but could not find much. I could however find this article from the archives of "Die Zeit", which is a sufficiently reputable/well-researched German newspaper (i.e. not a tabloid). In the article, they quote Heinrich Johannes Diehl, Managing ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible