Halfdan's

Comparative Languages
Database

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Objective

This Comparative Language Database is a personal project I have undertaken to help me in my own personal study of about 40 different (although often related) languages. This is by NO means a professional language guide and there is NO guarantee that any of the data contained herein is accurate - I have simply compiled this database as a way for me to jot down and keep track of the words I am learning in certain languages, and also to see which words I need to learn in other languages to be able to further develop my language skills.

Learning languages is a life-long day-by-day undertaking. One doesn't begin by learning deep, obscure, or complicated words the very first day. In studying languages and in talking with others in my travels who also study languages, I have found that many people begin learning a language by learning a few basic words first - numbers, greetings, questions, simple phrases like "Hello", "Please", "Thank you", "yes/no", "My name is...", "Where is...?", etc. - and then building on this base by adding deeper words to their vocabulary little by little.

I have found that many languages contain cognate words that are similar to those in English or derived from other related languages which can be easy to learn "across the board". I have also found that my vocabulary is much "deeper" in some languages than others - in some languages, I may only know a handful of basic words, while in other languages, I may know hundreds or thousands of words.

In order to expand my vocabulary, I try to pick up foreign words wherever I can - at Mexican, Chinese, Indian, German or Middle Eastern restaurants, Korean dry cleaners, and other places - and write down whatever words I pick up on scraps of paper, working them into conversation whenever possible to make sure the pronunciation and usage is correct and to reinforce them in my memory. Then I add these words to my database (which also reinforces them into my memory even more), and on the next opportunity, I try to work these words into conversation again, and pick up a few new words to add to the database, and the process repeats itself.

 

This Comparative Language Database is my personal attempt to:

  1. Build a beginner base of a few basic words in each language
  2. Build on that base by adding new words daily.
  3. Compare languages "across the board" to learn simple cognates or related words, with a minimal amount of work (sometimes only vowel or slight spelling/pronunciation shift)
  4. Be able to visually see which words I already know in certain languages
  5. Be able to visually see which words I am lacking and which I need to work on learning in order to bring other languages up to par.
  6. Have an organized reference where I can search to find words I may have forgotten (without having to search through scrawlings on countless scraps of paper!)

 

Download Instructions

Download and unzip the CompLangs.zip file into a directory of your choice. The CompLangs.zip file is currently about 165K, and the unzipped CompLangs.xls file is about 360K.

 

Application

Once you have downloaded the CompLangs.zip file and unzipped it, you can then open the CompLangs.xls file in Microsoft ExcelTM by either double-clicking on the CompLangs.xls file itself, or by running Excel, and click on File, Open, and then click on the file CompLangs.xls.

After you have opened the file, you should see something like this:

 

Comparative Language Database

 

 

Language Group Sheets

The database is divided into seven language group "Sheets":

| Teutonic | Romantic | Eastern European | Asian | African | Middle Eastern | Other |

 

On the lower left-hand side of document, you will see seven tabs:

Language Group Sheet Tabs

 

To view a language group sheet, simply click on the appropriate tab on the bottom of the page.

Sheet 1 is comprised of the Teutonic (Germanic/Scandinavian) languages:

Sheet 2 is comprised of the Romantic (Latin) languages:

Sheet 3 is comprised of some Northern/Eastern European languages:

Sheet 4 is comprised of Asian languages:

Sheet 5 is comprised of some languages spoken in Africa:

Sheet 6 is comprised of Arabic, Indian and other Middle Eastern languages:

Sheet 7 is comprised of tribal Native American Indian languages of North and South America:

Categories

This Comparative Languages Database is a continuously evolving project, but my final goal is to eventually include vocabulary in these and other categories:

I fully realize that many of the words or spellings contained herein are inaccurate - again, this is NOT meant to be a commercial or professional teaching aid for others, but rather just a personal reference to simply remind myself which words I already know, and which I still need to learn.

In some cases, you may notice that I have tried to list words or phrases with "formal", "day-to-day", and "slang" shades of saying similar things (for example: "Hello", "Hi", "Hey") so that I can get a better grasp of the idiosyncrasies of each language.

 

Search

After opening the file, to search for a word in either English or a target language, press Control + F to bring up the "Find" box. Then simply type in the word you would like to find and click Find Next

Press CTRL + F to Find a word in the database

Corrections

If you find blatant spelling or grammatical errors (you will!), please feel free to e-mail your corrections or suggestions to:

For regular updates, please check my web site at:

Enjoy!

Halfdan - Dan Meyer
Dan Meyer

halfdan@aol.com

http://www.blue-n-gold.com/halfdan