Garonne (garonne) wrote in linguaphiles,

"unwilling" polyglots

There are lots of people who are fluent in multiple languages because language learning is a hobby or passion for them. My question is about a different group of people. Among your acquaintances, what's the highest number of languages spoken (fluently) by someone who isn't very keen on learning languages or even actively dislikes it?

Define fluently however you like.

My maximum is 5. I know someone who grew up trilingual (and still retained the use of all three languages as an adult). He became fluent in a fourth language by living for many years as an adult in a country where it was spoken. Then he moved to a country which spoke a fifth language, and was forced to learn that. He managed to become quite fluent, but was always complaining about it, and ended up moving back to a country speaking one of his other four languages.

I also know quite a few people who are "unwillingly" fluent in four languages. But I'm sure the record is much higher than four or five!
Tags: multilingual, multiple languages

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