Most beautiful sounding languages, in your opinion? (Koreans, Irish)
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I like Portuguese. Whether I hear it from someone from Brazil or Portugal I always seem to like its sounds on my ear. I think several other languages are pretty too, but it depends on who is speaking it. I think Spanish is beautiful, but not Caribbean or Mexican variations. I think Italian is beautiful, but I find Sicilian Italian to be intimidating and gangster like (probably due to the effects of American cinema).
I find England's English to be beautiful as well, but not the non-rhotic variations.
When I really think about it, I don't find standard American English to be that ugly of a language. When spoken properly it sounds like a very intellectual language.
Am I the only one who finds the Irish English to be more comical than romantic?
NOTE: This reply is written by my wife, a Vietnamese-American:
Originally Posted by Thepastpresentandfuture
Also, I agree that German, Vietnamese, Korean, and Arabic are some of ugliest sounding languages.
Originally Posted by hadrett32
Ugly Languages: Chinese, Vietnamese, Danish (although the country and its people are great), Finnish, Russian, Polish, Serbian, Slavic languages in general, Korean
Originally Posted by igneel
I don't like Vietnamese (sounded shrill)
I don't think most people understand that there are just as many different accents among Vietnamese speakers as among American English speakers. If one acknowledges that the differences between the accents of New Jerseans, Texans, Georgians, and Louisianans are so vast, then one must allow oneself to recognize that there are many different accents in Vietnamese language as well.
The sound of Vietnamese language spoken by extras in American-made movies was completely unlike the sound spoken by my father, my brother, and hundreds of thousands educated Vietnamese who were born in the Ha Noi Metropolitan area.
Most Southern Vietnamese could not understand one word spoken by Central Vietnamese, and many Central Vietnamese could not follow the vocabulary and sentence structure of Northern Vietnamese. Put three strangers, each from one part of Vietnam, in the same room, and you will need an interpreter.
What is better, nature or nurture? The answer is both, or neither. What does nature/nurture have anything to do with Vietnamese language? Plenty.
We Vietnamese-Americans came from all parts of Vietnam, and we went through tremendous transformation while living in the country where we became citizens. We lost ourselves along the way with the changes. The us-before and the us-after no longer resemble one another. We didn't just alter our personalities, our lifestyles, our values, and our behaviours, we even changed the way we speak our mother tongue, to the point that members of the same family no longer speak the same way. Mine is a perfect example. There are seven of us siblings, and when we converse together, one can easily separate five different accents and intonations. According to the rest of the family, my oldest brother and I have the most correct accent, but we both are not among the "typical" (if there were such a group) Vietnamese speakers whom most people recognize, since no one will be able to describe our intonations as shrill (well, except when I'm particularly angry, then the shrillness will definitely appear in force, but again, that happens with many American English speakers too when they are peeved.) And choppy? Never.
Just an aside, if you have a chance, look up the movies whose casts include the famous Vietnamese actress Kieu Chinh (among them, 21 and a Wake-Up, Journey from the Fall, Green Dragon, Catfish in Black Bean Sauce, Hamburger Hill, and especially, What's Cooking?) and hear for yourself how the correct Vietnamese language is spoken.
I love to listen to English spoken by the Irish or Scots. French sounds beautiful. I don't think it's possible to make it sound bad. Most Asian languages--I cannot stand (my ancestors are from South China). I like Mandarin though (except from Beijing--too many RRRRR sounds). Mandarin has a nice balance of tones. The further south you go, the more tones you get and it sounds high pitched, nasally, sing-songy mess (Cantonese, Vietnamese). But the further north you go, you lose too many tones and inflections and it sounds too robotic (Japanese, Korean).
I can't tell you how many times my ears bled at family gatherings when I was a kid.
I think French sounds nice, but in my ears it is not an overly romantic language, neither is Italian.
From the languages I've encountered so far, I really like Japanese and Greek. Spanish can sounds very nice, too, depending on the accent.
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