In three days time, Ich bin ein Berliner! If you’re wondering why the brown color and why in bold letters, well it’s just the way I will be writing from now on – any time I use a language other than English. So brown always denotes here German language.
I still do have some packing to do. Reminds me, funny enough, of a reality-TV show they showed in Finnish TV in the 90’s, titled “Passi ja hammasharja“. It was filmed aboard a ferryboat sailing between Helsinki and Stockholm, and the only thing that the participants were allowed – or needed, can’t remember which – to take with them was their passport and a toothbrush. Yes, you assumed correct: toothbrush in Finnish is hammasharja. And ever since that time, I promise you, many a Finn packing their bags and looking for their passport, can’t help thinking about that darned toothbrush!
toothbrush hammasharja tandborste tandbørste tannbørste tannbursti Zahnbürste(f) brosse(f) à dents cepillo de dientes spazzolino(m) (da denti) οδοντόβουρτσα зубнáя щётка haburashi 歯ブラシ = はブラシ
Did you notice by the way that I left out the language abbreviations? As a follower of this site, I want you to get used to the color theme, and also used to the idea that at any time, out of the blue, you may encounter a foreign word or sentence here. And they will not always be explained either, but the meaning should be clear from the context. Some day the emphasis will be on German, some on Spanish, some on Japanese etc etc. For the 日本 語 learners, I will always try to provide the kanji and/or kanas. And I hope I don’t insult your intellect by stating the obvious: Japanese in Japanese is 日本 語 i.e. nihongo
Berlin, hier komme ich! Oh, one more thing! Don’t you agree that my youngest son, born on the day that Berlin became die Hauptstadt of the unified Germany, ought to be an honorary citizen of Berlin?
So enough said about what this site is about. Here’s what you can expect to get here. I will be posting on a regular basis samples of the Mercury Dictionary that I mentioned before. These samples connect with the topic in question. For example, if we talk about hunger, there will be words and sentences that have something to do with hunger – in as many languages as possible (IAMLAP). The IAMLAP is of course an acronym for in as many languages as possible, but it could also represent the fact that wherever you go, you are always going to come back to – yourself. After another knowledge gathering trip of yours!
There will also be lots of links, many of them leading to Wikipedia – that great free encyclopedia! Most of these Wiki links are to the English pages, but whenever preferable, another language is used.
The language order of the Mercury Dictionary is seen below. English first, but then generally from north towards south, and from west towards east. Except for English, the abbreviations are those used in the IIAF listings for member countries.
ENG FIN EST SWE DEN NOR ISL GER FRA POR SPA ITA LAT GRE RUS SWA JPN
So to the sample! Let’s talk about mother. Once in a while (like here) even some additional languages are included.
mother(Eng) äiti(Fin) ema(Est) mor/moder(Swe) moder(Dan) mor(Nor) móðir(f)(Isl) Mutter(f)(Ger) mère(f)(Fra) mãe(f)(Por) madre(f)(Spa) madre(f)(Ita) mater(f)(Lat) μητέρα(f)(Gre) мать(f)(Rus) mama(Swa) haha-oya(Jpn) 母親 = ははおや – anya(Hung) – anne(Turk) – oum(Arab) – Em(Hebr)
In Google Drive where I mainly work on this dictionary, all of the languages are color coded for easy reference. I will be explaining about that later. Anyway, your email address is all that is needed to be able to access any of these updateable files (there are quite a few of them!) in Google Drive! The above sample is really just to give you an idea of the magnitude of the dictionary.
Another thing that I wanted to mention here is that this site will be a lot about travelling. Naturally, languages and travelling do go hand in hand! And of course, wherever you go, you as a true cosmopolitan need to learn some of the language spoken in the country of your choice. The travel sites will be a mishmash of English and that other language! Starting next week from Berlin!