Language Ponderings

Norm Stansfield

私は亀が好きだ。
Mar 17, 2009
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#6
Mandarins Chinese. Can't seem to grasp it. Seems all Greek to me.
We should get back to calling "Mandarin Chinese" just Chinese (or Standard Chinese, if you wanna be fancy). All that "Mandarin" stuff just confuses everyone, and it's not accurate anyway, because there is more than one "Mandarin" dialect.
 

SKEPTIC

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May 12, 2007
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#14
חוסר פחד

جسارة

恐怖心のなさ

Seems like the Japanese don't have an exact term. The Japanese term above (Kyoufu Kokoro no na-sa) sorta means "there is no fear in [his/her] heart."
Thank you, sir.

The Indo European languages break it down like this: without+fear= fearless or without+fear+state(of)=fearlessness. In other words, the negation of fear. Is that the same way, in this instance, that it's done in Hebrew and Arabic?
 

Neon

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#15
Thank you, sir.

The Indo European languages break it down like this: without+fear= fearless or without+fear+state(of)=fearlessness. In other words, the negation of fear. Is that the same way, in this instance, that it's done in Hebrew and Arabic?
The Hebrew term breaks down to חוסר - which is "lack of" or "absence of" and פחד, which means "fear." The Arabic one I am less sure of because I just used Google Translate, so there might be a better term. I think that ones means more like "daring" than specifically "fearless." There is also لا يعرف الخوف, which literally means "does not know fear."
 
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SKEPTIC

Those who believe in telekinetics, raise my hand.
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#16
The Hebrew term breaks down to חוסר - which is "lack of" or "absence of" and פחד, which means "fear." The Arabic one I am less sure of because I just used Google Translate, so there might be a better term. I think that ones means more like "daring" than specifically "fearless." There is also لا يعرف الخوف, which literally means "does not know fear."
Ok, the Hebrew meaning is perfect.

On the Japanese, what do you think of this instead: 恐れず

Found it here:

This is probably the best way to express "No Fear" in Japanese.

The first Kanji and following Hiragana character create a word that means: to fear, to be afraid of, frightened, or terrified.

The last Hiragana character serves to modify and negate the first word (put it in negative form). Basically, they carry a meaning like "without" or "keeping away". This is almost like the English modifier "-less".

Altogether, you get something like, "Without Fear" or "Fearless".

Here's an example of using this in a sentence: 彼女かのじょは思い切ったことを恐れずにやる。
Translation: She is not scared of taking big risks.
Fearless in Chinese/Japanese
 

SKEPTIC

Those who believe in telekinetics, raise my hand.
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#18
Hm... I guess that would work. Although I think in this case it is an adjective but I'm not exactly sure. I was specifically trying to find a noun that would mean the state of having no fear.
Yeah, I noticed the GoogleTranslation "fearlessly," but I'm not sure either. I do like how it matches the words from the other languages in terms of the structure: fear+negation(of)= fearless.
 

Norm Stansfield

私は亀が好きだ。
Mar 17, 2009
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#19
@NeonTaster et alli

How do you write "fearless" or "fearlessness" in Hebrew, Arabic, and Japanese? It's for the title under my avatar.
With Japanese, you won't find "fearless" in a dictionary, because it's actually a conjugated verb, not a stand-alone adjective. It would be like looking for the word "staring" in an English dictionary (you'll only find "to stare").

In Japanese, you can use any verb as if it was an adjective (to modify a noun). You can sometimes do this in English too and it sounds natural ("that staring man is weird"), but rarely. Instead, English does various things with the verb. For instance, instead of "a sitting person" you say "a seated person", and instead of "a fearing person" you say "a fearful person".

Which brings me to my point: in English, instead of "a not fearing person" you say "a fearless person". In Japanese, on the other hand, it's fine to say "a not fearing person". "to fear/be afraid of" is 恐れる (osoreru), "to not be afraid" is 恐れない. So, if you wanna say a fearless person, you literally say "a not fearing person": 恐れない (osorenai hito).

Just in case you think I'm full of shit, here's a book called "Fearless technique": http://d.hatena.ne.jp/lp6ac4/20130918 (apparently, it's about a boardgame called mahjong - it's what came up on google).

Also, a detailed explanation of the grammar I used: http://www.guidetojapanese.org/learn/grammar/clause
 
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Creasy Bear

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#20
When do you reckon an American started to sound like an American?

You gotta figure that most Americans sounded like the British, or Irish, or whatever europeans they all basically were for a pretty long while until the accent started to evolve into sounding American. Musta taken a few generations, doncha think? Like maybe around 1800 or so I'm guessing.
 
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#21
When do you reckon an American started to sound like an American?

You gotta figure that most Americans sounded like the British, or Irish, or whatever europeans they all basically were for a pretty long while until the accent started to evolve into sounding American. Musta taken a few generations, doncha think? Like maybe around 1800 or so I'm guessing.
Well, English colonization started 1607 (if memory serves), so I'd imagine we started sounding more "American" before 1800. You can still hear the Trans-Atlantic accent in parts of the North East, but the American accent is pretty homogeneous due to it being settled by people from all over.
 

Norm Stansfield

私は亀が好きだ。
Mar 17, 2009
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#22
When do you reckon an American started to sound like an American?

You gotta figure that most Americans sounded like the British, or Irish, or whatever europeans they all basically were for a pretty long while until the accent started to evolve into sounding American. Musta taken a few generations, doncha think? Like maybe around 1800 or so I'm guessing.
Funny thing is, British English pronunciation before 1800 likely (judging from descriptions, there's no actual audio) sounded more like modern American English than the modern British public school and BBC accent.

Standard English, with the soft Rs, started out among the upper classes of 19th century Southern England, and even today it's only spoken by about 3% of the public (and everyone at the BBC, hence the name "BBC English"). The Boston and Southern US accents are also a result of that accent becoming fashionable among American elites before the industrial revolution (back when Americans still looked up to the more economically advanced England).

But this whole history has a lot of speculation in it. Languages, especially dialects, change very fast. Much too fast to be able to actually track changes accurately, across centuries, without audio recordings. English from 1700 would be almost unrecognizable. Way more different than differences even among the most extreme modern dialects and accents.
 

whiskeyguy

PR representative for Drunk Whiskeyguy.
Jan 12, 2010
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#25
Whenever I see hot foreign chicks, I always think to myself "I could probably fuck her" even though they'd be out of my league in America. Either I'm delusional or being an American really is that bad ass (I'm probably delusional).
 
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