Spot the Language 24

Rules: Identify the language, that is, say something intelligent about it. Possibilities include where it is spoken, what race or ethnicity the speakers are, whether the language is extinct or extant and what shape the language is in, to what general or specific language families the language belongs, and anything else intelligent you can think of about the language etc. You’re not supposed to look it up; anyone can do that. You’re supposed to do it off the top of your head, ideally.

1. Chichewa
2. Chukchi
3. Chuvash
4. Coptic
5. Cree
6. Creek
7. Dari
8. Diegueno
9. Dzongka
10. Enets
11. Etruscan
12. Evenki
13. Ewe
14. Faroese
15. Fon
16. Frisian
17. Friulian
18. Fulfulde
19. Gabrielino
20. Galician

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13 thoughts on “Spot the Language 24”

  1. 5 Coptic is tha language used by Christians in Egypt. Presumably Semitic.

    6 Cree is one of the many Amerindian laguages that used to be spoken in pre-Columbian Canada.

    14 Faroese is the North Germanic language spoken on islands between Scotland and Iceland that belong to Denmark.

    16 Frisian is a West Germanic language spoken in the Dutch province of Friesland and in small parts of North Western Germany.

    17 Friulan is an Italian dialect spoken in Italy near Slovenia.

    20 Galician is the Latin language closely related to Portuguese that is spoken in the North Western corner of Spain.

    1. Good, all are correct.

      Friulian is actually a Rhaetian language, related to Romansch spoken in Switzerland.

      Coptic is pretty much extinct. I think there is one family that is still using it. However, it is used in the liturgy like Latin is.

      Cree is still spoken. It has 90,000 speakers. It’s actually 6 separate languages. All are in very good shape. Apparently Algonquian.

  2. #8 diegueno… diegueno is the slave name of our people given to us by the spanish.. we are now called Kumeyaay.. but we are Ipai (the people) and our language is called iipay aa we are from the hokan stock.. karen.. member of the santa ysabel reservation

  3. All I can add is Etruscan, long-dead language of the Etruscans who dominated N. Italy before the rise of Rome.

    1. Good description of Etruscan, LS. Also, Etruscan is a language isolate that has not been tied to any living language at all. I’ve reviewed the evidence, and I really don’t know what to do with Etruscan. One problem is we don’t have much material.

  4. 1. Chichewa — Pretty sure this is a South American indian langauge, I think in Boliva.

    6. Creek — Midwest American indian langauge.

    7. Dari — A widely used variant of Persian spoken in northern India and Pakistan.

    14. Faroese — From the Faroe islands, related to Old Norse.

    16. Frisian — A germanic language that is supposedly the closest relative of English. Spoken on the Frisian islands, and along the coast of Germany and the Netherlands.

    19. Gabrielino — Language of the Indians of Los Angeles, especially those who gathered around the Mission San Gabriel. I believe there are still a few native speakers toddling around.

    1. Good job!

      All are correct except for #1, Chichewa. It’s not an Amerindian language.

      Creek was formerly spoken in the South along the Gulf Coast, but now it is spoken in Oklahoma.

      Dari is also spoken widely spoken in Afghanistan.

      Indeed Frisian is the closest language to English.

      The last native speaker of Gabrieleno, or Tongva, died in the 1970’s.

  5. 2. Chukchi
    Spoken in Chukotka in NW Russia. The chuchkis are stereotyped as slow and stupid as show in the Soviet joke:
    A chuchki applies for a place in a Soviet writers association. The interviewer asks, “What books have your read?” The chuchki responds,” Chuchki writer, not reader!” (Sorry if this is worded badly, but I was doing it from memory.)

    3. Chuvash
    A turkic language spoke in Russia near the Urals.
    I believe that the are the only turkic group other than the Gagauz in Moldova that are largely christian.

    5. Cree
    American indian language. (Didn’t Andrew Jackson beat the shit out of these people at horshoe bend or some other battle, or was that the creeks?)

    7. Dari
    Afghani persian. I believe its spoken by the Hazara among others.

    11. Etruscan
    Dead language. I don’t think it is an IE language. Supposedly they came to Northern Italy from the east(Anatolia?). I thought I also read that their writing system influenced germanic runic alphabets, but I’m not sure.

    12. Evenki
    Is this a language of the Russian Far East. It sounds familiar. Only a few hundred speakers left I think.

    20. Galician
    From northen spain directly north of portugal. I believe its sounds much like Portugese. I also believe their related to celts in some ways (Bagpipes, Celtiberians,…) However it can be confusing becasue there is also a province in Ukraine called Galicia, but they speak Ukrainian.

  6. “10. Enets”

    Is this related to the Nenets Autonomous Republic of Russia? (I believe its an autonomous republic, though maybe its just an oblast.)

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