August 14th, 2009


Swiss police

The following image is from The Unwritten #4, a comic book from the US. My question is about the panel in the lower left corner. The story is set in Switzerland and our hero is being hauled away by the Swiss police (btw he didn't do it). The cop is clearly reciting a French version of the famous Miranda rights familiar to everyone from American tv (apologies, I don't know how to type accents): "Vous avez le droit de garder le silence. Tout ce que vous direz pourra etre utilise contre vous devant un tribunal". Setting aside the legality of informing a person of his rights in a language he doesn't speak, do the Swiss police have a spiel for arresting police officers and does it sound like this?Collapse )
new england

(no subject)

So I was recently made aware of the Spanish word for "trilingual", "trilingüe". Up until now I was under the impression that there was no letter Ü in Spanish (this might have been a stupid thing to assume, but I just had never seen it before). Does anyone know of some other examples of Spanish words where Ü is used?

ETA: Also, now that I think of it, what exactly happens to the sound of the U when the umlaut is placed over it in Spanish?

(The more I add to my question the more 'Spanish 101' it becomes)
  • oh_meow

For teachers

I teach EFL and students often seem to come with some bizarre rules/advice from their (non-native) teachers in their home countries which give them all kinds of trouble until they're debunked. Some from this week include:

1) You should never buy an Oxford dictionary because they are "too easy" (despite, you know, publishing the OED, THE English dictionary) (adv class-Danish)
2) The phrase "in conclusion" doesn't exist in English (adv class- French)
3) After a preposition, you must always use a gerund (the ing verbal-noun form), whatever the sentence (int class- Turkish - this guy wrote some magnificently confusing sentences until we got this straightened out)
4) You may not use any phrasal verbs in formal written English, so there's no point studying them at university level (phrasal verbs are verbs that come with prepositions, like put up with, some can be replaced with latinate vocab for formal writing, but it's not a good idea to overdo it)

Any other language teachers here have similar "facts" about their language your poor students got saddled with?
  • keturah

Bulbul Etymology

I was told that bulbul is a colloquial word for prepubescent phallus in Hebrew. Why?

[It is a Persian word that means Nightingale, though Bulbuls are their own family of birds, in fact. The word in Arabic/Farsi is often used in association with singers.]

Filipino Wordage Help Please

So, I wanted to comment on a picture my dad posted saying that he is "Busted!" i.e. caught in the act of doing something ( something corny, that is). I know the word is "buking" but I do not know the correct spelling. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated, thanks! (0:
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