Smartphones, search engines and translators can break language barriers easily enough, but what if you wanted to know how to do things yourself? This guide will show you all the tips and tricks you need to identify almost any language in a matter of seconds.
Photo by laogooli.
The guide, from linguist James Harbeck, shows you how to identify almost any written language by looking for special characters, common spellings and accents. You’ll learn that out of French, Spanish and Italian, Spanish is the only language that uses the “ñ” character and Italian has the common words of è (is) and e (and). You’ll also learn that the characters “Ã” and “ã” are a dead giveaway for Portuguese, especially if the language resembles Spanish. And a simple way to tell Japanese apart from Chinese is to look at the shape of the characters (Chinese characters are never round), and check for the frequent use of the character “の”, which doesn’t exist in Chinese. You can find more language identification tricks in the complete guide at the link below.
How to Identify Any Language at a Glance [The Week]
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