Twain made his first unsuccessful attempt to learn German in at age fifteen. He resumed his study 28 years later in preparation for a trip to Europe. Upon his arrival in Germany, the fruit of this recent scholarship was attested to in the advice of a friend: "Speak in German, Mark. Some of these people may understand English.
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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Ana Maria Brock Translator. Get A Copy. More Details Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
Why exactly is German considered "Schrecklich? I grew up bi-lingual: I spoke Slovak and German from early childhood on. It became very useful when I was imprisoned in concentration camps in Germany. Hannes Blank Nun, die deutsche Sprache ist so ambivalent, finde ich, sodass sowohl die Bezeichnung "schrecklich" als auch "usefull" passt.
Einige wenige beherrsche …more Nun, die deutsche Sprache ist so ambivalent, finde ich, sodass sowohl die Bezeichnung "schrecklich" als auch "usefull" passt. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 4. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. The inventor of the language probably got what he knew about a conscience from hearsay.
Of course no bird would do that, but then you must stick to the book. It is as bad as Latin. Genitives -- Meines guten Freundes, of my good friend. Dative -- Meinem guten Freund, to my good friend. Accusative -- Meinen guten Freund, my good friend. Now let the candidate for the asylum try to memorize those variations, and see how soon he will be elected. One might better go without friends in Germany than take all this trouble about them. Observe these examples: Freundschaftsbezeigungen.
These things are not words, they are alphabetical processions. And they are not rare; one can open a German newspaper at any time and see them marching majestically across the page -- and if he has any imagination he can see the banners and hear the music, too.
They impart a martial thrill to the meekest subject. I take a great interest in these curiosities. Whenever I come across a good one, I stuff it and put it in my museum. In this way I have made quite a valuable collection. When I get duplicates, I exchange with other collectors, and thus increase the variety of my stock.
Here rare some specimens which I lately bought at an auction sale of the effects of a bankrupt bric-a-brac hunter: Generalstaatsverordnetenversammlungen. This would simplify the language. View all 5 comments. Now I know why my German is so bad! Thanks to Mark Twain I now see it is not my fault! Seriously - a long lost gem of humor that I was glad to find. View all 40 comments. Jun 27, Matt rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Germans and learners of the German. Shelves: might-tell-you-the-truth , it-takes-a-lot-to-laugh , read-in-more-than-one-language.
Depending on your knowledge of German or your interest in learning it you may find this piece hilarious, repelling, or attractive and compelling. View all 13 comments. Feb 04, Ines rated it it was amazing Shelves: language-related , deutsch. I love my mother tounge. This essay dwells on all those little absurdities that make it so loveable.
If you learn German, read it, you will find a soulmate in your difficulties. If you are German, read it, it makes you feel grateful that you don't have to learn it View 2 comments. Though the book is really funny and entertaining it is hard not to contradict. Klar ist das Buch komisch und unterhaltsam,, aber ich kann doch nicht widerstehen, ihm zu widersprechen. Twains Angriffe gegen den Erfinder der deutschen Sprache lassen deutlich erkennen, dass er seine eigene Sprache nie selber richtig lernen musste.
Admittedly: Der-die-das instead of the-the-th Though the book is really funny and entertaining it is hard not to contradict. Admittedly: Der-die-das instead of the-the-the makes it a little bit difficult. But most European languages have grammatical genders and, as so often in linguistic matters you should not look for logic. Ok, der-die-das muss man eben dazu lernen.
Und Logik sollte man in der Linguistik nicht erwarten. Look into your dictionary to count the meanings of shift and pitch. The words are too long? I surrepticiously find this observation a little preposterous and saturninely avuncular. Den Vorwurf finde ich surreptiociously a little preposterous and saturninely avuncular. Twain is a fair player and also finds some credit for the German language. At least you always know how to pronounce a word that you read somewhere.
But there is one more advantage: German makes no difference between adjectives and adverbs. Aber Twain ist auch fair und verteilt Lob. Im Deutschen mauss man nicht zu jedem Adjektiv noch ein Adverb dazulernen. View all 3 comments. May 28, Arthur Thomas rated it it was amazing. One of the funniest essays ever written. Nov 03, Soobie's scared rated it really liked it Shelves: language-english , literature-american , stand-alone-novel , language-deutsch , reference-languages , non-fiction , read I really don't know which language I should write this in.
The edition I've read was bilingual and I took the chance to savor some German with a useful facing-page translation. In addition, it should be easier writing about German grammar in German To settle things once and for all, you'll find an English Review below the German one. Ich wusste nicht, dass Mark Twain versuchte, Deutsch zu lernen. Seiner Meinung nach ist Deutsch eine Sprache, die I really don't know which language I should write this in. Das kann ich nicht verstehen.
Das ist zu kurz. Viel logischer als English. Man beginnt mit dem Lesen aber, als man das Ende erreicht, hat man den Anfang schon vergessen. Der Leser kann nochmal vergessen, wie der Satz beginnt und wie er endet. Es hilft den Leser, als er einen Fall erkennen muss. Aber die Deutsche, die Italiener, die Spanier Genus, zum Beispiel. Ich bin Italienerin und ich finde es sehr schwer, wenn ich das Pronomen it auf English benutzen muss.
I bought him yesterday.
The Awful German Language
The Awful German Language / Die schreckliche deutsche Sprache