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Wed Aug 1, 2012, 07:23 PM

Anyone here able to read Norwegian?

Working on family history stuff. Google translate has been pretty good (well I am able to get the gist). Unfortunately there is a caption on the back of an old picture. It is written in cursive and I am have the damnedest time trying to make anything out! Still am amazed that I grew up in a Norwegian family (well 1/4, but that was the dominate side), around what seemed to be million of Norwegians (ND and MN), and have yet to find anyone still living that can speak or read it. ugh, so mad at my self for rolling my eyes when my grandpa would bring out the Norwegian primers.

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Response to GobBluth (Original post)

Wed Aug 1, 2012, 07:40 PM

1. Check with bobthedrummer... I'll be he knows someone who speaks it.

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Response to GobBluth (Original post)

Wed Aug 1, 2012, 08:03 PM

2. Diocletian, who sometimes posts here, is from Norway



I speak a little modern Norwegian, but not the old stuff.

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Response to GobBluth (Original post)

Wed Aug 1, 2012, 09:32 PM

3. In the meantime, while waiting for some translation

Enjoy the grim and frostbitten world of Immortal. (Fine Norwegian Black Metal)

&feature=related

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Response to GobBluth (Original post)

Sat Aug 18, 2012, 02:20 AM

4. Thanks to y'all! Will search for those two posters!

though Original Geek....I am late deafened, and actually kind of happy I could hear that video!!!! But thanks just the same.....off to make my brain sing the Doors!

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Response to GobBluth (Original post)

Sat Aug 18, 2012, 02:44 AM

5. I've had several situations like this

 

I took some introductory German, but never really got that far. Back in 2005, one end of my mother's family hosted a family reunion and invited distant relatives from Germany (the guy that came over and seeded the family here was one of a bunch of children and the only one who came to the US). One couple came over and they didn't speak much English. I was tasked with translating for them and it was quite a chore since I don't know the language well. But we made do.

Then, about a year ago, she showed me some old documents in German and asked me to translate them. That wasn't too hard since it was just birth and death records. But anything more would have been pretty tough.

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Response to RZM (Reply #5)

Sat Aug 18, 2012, 02:51 AM

6. lol, well RZM, when I delve more into my German side, expect some emails from me!

But doesn't that make you sad? I am married to a Greek, we live in a Greek Community here in FL. My kids know Greek, but that is because of ME yelling at my husband and in-laws to speak it around them! Yet many of the 2nd generation have no idea how to converse in Greek, many can read it for some reason, but not speak it. I have met some 2nd generation Hispanics, whose parent get mad if they speak Spanish to the grandchildren, and it boils me alive. I am so jealous of people whose family held on to something positive (in this case another language) of their heritage. I grew up in Minnesota. Lots of Norwegians, Germans and Czechs (Bohemian in my case), yet none taught their children their language. I remember the stories of my 1st generation Norwegian grandfather. When he was 5 he was expected to translate for his father, and the local Norwegians made his father feel ashamed for not knowing English as well. So much so that my grandfather and my bohemian grandmother never taught their children their native language.

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Response to GobBluth (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 18, 2012, 02:56 AM

7. I only know German from a few classes. I'm much better with Russian and Spanish

 

German is easier to read than Russian, but it's not easier to speak. And Spanish is way easier than both because of the cognates.

I haven't read German in a while. But it's interesting you bring up the heritage speaking, because I was raised in a household where Spanish was spoken in addition to English. I never spoke it much, but my step-siblings did because they had the heritage. One was born in Latin America and the other here. The latter completely rejected it once she reached school age and the former still speaks it with his parents, but gets this weird, vacant expression when he does. You can tell he doesn't much enjoy it because he can't express himself as readily as he can in English.

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Response to RZM (Reply #7)

Sat Aug 18, 2012, 03:11 AM

8. That makes me really sad

about your step-siblings.

My in-laws came over during WWII from Greece when they were in their teens. They learned English quite easily (very smart!), and are fluent. But when something of importance is occurring, they revert to Greek, which is why they tend to frequent Greek speaking doctors and lawyers (I live in the most densely populated Greek community in America, so this is quite easy). They feel more comfortable speaking Greek if possible. My husband is fluent in Greek and English. Was a Russian interrupter for the Air Force (ranked 2 out of 200, and that's because he is a little lazy, only 7 graduated!). However his cousins feel ashamed now that they are not as fluent with Greek.

Just makes me mad that people don't embrace that, because I wish someone was speaking a 2nd language to me growing up, would have made learning a 3rd, or even 4th language that much easier. Which is why my kids go to a Greek Immersion Charter school (gasp). I don't care if my kids are learning Klingon, when my husband told me how easy it was for him to pick up Russian because he was bi-lingual (he is not fluent with Russian, just good enough for the Air Force), no way am I denying that to my kids.

I like the melting pot idea, but living in this Greek community (far different from what i experienced in MN, not better, just different) I wish the US was much more accepting of, at the very least, different languages. Would help so many out.

Forgive my rambling, I have had too much Merlot!

In regards to the German, sadly I don't have anything personal and in cursive to translate (Yet, let me work on my aunts!). Most should be pretty straight forward, government forms and censuses. Still I am very jealous of even your rudimentary German!

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Response to GobBluth (Reply #8)

Sat Aug 18, 2012, 03:20 AM

9. Here's the fundamental problem with heritage speakers

 

Kids are going to want to speak the language their friends speak. And in America, your friends are going to speak English. So kids will associate English with having a good time and being independent. They are going to associate their parents' native language with chores, boredom, and getting reprimanded. Plus they get all of their schooling and entertainment in English as well.

It's pretty natural. As people become Americans, they speak the language of America.

That's how it goes.

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Response to RZM (Reply #9)

Sat Aug 18, 2012, 03:31 AM

10. I get that with heritages that may be the minority

The town I live in has 22K people, most of them Greeks, but the surrounding areas are transplants from other states (I live in FL), so I understand.

However, I grew up in Minnesota, right outside the twin cities. It HAS become MUCH more diverse, but when I was growing up it was ALL Norwegians, Germans, Polish, and Bohemians (Czech, sorry, my grandmother will curse me if I use Czech!), with some African Americans, Chinese, and Muslims from various countries mixed in. There were yearly festivals to celebrate Norway and Germany, yet NOBODY (seriously I remain friends with most people from my homogeneous highschool, I know! lol) know even how to count to 10 in Norwegian or German.

Ugh, I guess that's what I find lacking here in the states. More so when I see the stupid meme of "English Only". It only curbs our knowledge as a whole. I find it amazing that most of my husband REAL Greek relatives, when they come to visit, have no real problem speaking with this English only me. Very rarely does my husband have to translate to them what I am saying. When I meet my husband's Greek Canadian (Montreal) relatives, well they just freaking floor me! Everyone of them knows Greek, English, and French, and they are proud of that.

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