“Tsundoku,” the Japanese Word for the New Books That Pile Up on Our Shelves, Should Enter the English Language

≡ Category: History, Language Lessons, Writing |5 Comments

There are some words out there that are brilliantly evocative and at the same time impossible to fully translate. Yiddish has the word shlimazl, which basically means a perpetually unlucky person. German has the word Backpfeifengesicht, which roughly means a face that is badly in need of a fist.

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Study 40+ Languages with Free Lessons from the U.S. Foreign Service Institute

≡ Category: Language Lessons |3 Comments

I spent this afternoon chatting with a travel writer about how we first allowed ourselves to start learning foreign languages. That notion may sound a bit odd, especially to those of you living in countries where everyone grows up trilingual.

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Now You Can Learn to Speak Klingon with Rosetta Stone

≡ Category: Language Lessons |4 Comments

For only $269, you can learn to speak Klingon with Rosetta Stone.
Our big collection of Free Language Lessons offers tutorials in Bambara, Bulgarian, Icelandic, Yiddish and more. But Klingon? That, sadly, you can only get at Rosetta Stone.

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Play the Great Language Game: It’s Fun and Free

≡ Category: Language Lessons |1 Comment

Are you ready to play The Great Language Game? This online game “challenges you to distinguish between some eighty or so languages [see a list here] based on their sound alone. In each game you’re allowed three mistakes, which are kept for you to study at the end.

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Learn Latin, Old English, Sanskrit, Classical Greek & Other Ancient Languages in 10 Lessons

≡ Category: Books, Language Lessons |7 Comments

I receive weekly reminders of my linguistic ignorance whenever I read anything by authors fluent in Latin.

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The International Children’s Digital Library Offers Free eBooks for Kids in Over 40 Languages

≡ Category: Books, Education, English Language, K-12, Language Lessons |2 Comments

For all of the free literature and essays available online, a surprisingly small amount is geared toward children. Even less is aimed at children who speak foreign languages.
The International Children’s Digital Library offers children ages 3-13 free access to the best available children’s literature in more than 40 languages.

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Fill Your New Kindle, iPad, iPhone, eReader with Free eBooks, Movies, Audio Books, Online Courses & More

≡ Category: Audio Books, e-books, Language Lessons, Online Courses |3 Comments

Santa left a new Kindle, iPad or other media player under your tree. He did his job. Now we’ll do ours. We’ll tell you how to fill those devices with free intelligent media — great books, movies, courses, and all of the rest. And if you didn’t get a new gadget, fear not.

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MIT Teaches You How to Speak Italian & Cook Italian Cuisine All at Once (Free Online Course)

≡ Category: Language Lessons, MIT |6 Comments

At MIT, Dr. Paola Rebusco usually teaches physics to freshmen. But, on behalf of the MIT Experimental Study Group, Rebusco has devised an appealing course – Speak Italian with Your Mouth Full – where she combines teaching two things many people love: learning to speak Italian and cooking Italian food.

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Animated Video Explores the Invented Languages of Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones & Star Trek

≡ Category: Animation, Language Lessons, Literature |2 Comments

“Is there anything sadder than an Esperantist?” a friend once jokingly asked me. “Two Esperantists” might seem the natural response, but hey, at least they could talk to each other.

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Learn 46 Languages for Free Online: A Big Update to Our Master List

≡ Category: Language Lessons |10 Comments

Right in time for your summer travels, we’ve just completed a big update to our rich collection of Free Foreign Language Lessons. Featuring free audio and video lessons, this handy resource will help you learn to speak Spanish, French, German, English, Chinese, Arabic, Italian, and Russian, plus 36 other languages.

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