Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Expressiveness catalogue

Which language best expresses an idea?
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It's said some cultures have far more words for snow. Or that some languages have no sense of the past.

The idea would be a reference suggesting the most suitable language for expressing nouns of the world, such as love (German?) or vulgarity.

Even the list of concepts would reveal ideas unique to certain languages.

4and20, Aug 15 2012


       The best language is probably whichever one the person receiving the message understands.
rcarty, Aug 15 2012

       I bunned it but I'm reasonably sure that there are lists on the internet of what language is best for what situation.
FlyingToaster, Aug 15 2012

       Would be nice if it existed. It seems, for written languages, a starting point could be looking for common or unique nouns in just in the definitional lines of each language's dictionary.   

       It's not clear word frequency lists are as helpful, but one list has "man/person" as #1 in Russian texts, while "time" shows up as #1 in a similar list for English.   

       I find just the sound and rhythm of a language gives one a different sensation, especially speaking. It would be native speakers who know best. Perhaps a communal web site might let native speakers clarify differences suggested by brute data analysis.
4and20, Aug 15 2012

       If you want a good language to be upset with someone in, we recommend Polish.   

       You may not understand the actual words, but the meaning - particularly when delivered by a slightly intoxicated and very VERY angry Polish woman, at full volume - is absolutely unmistakeable.
8th of 7, Aug 15 2012

       Polish, being Slavic like Russian -- is it possible she's complaining about her man person?
4and20, Aug 15 2012

       It would have been necessary to carry out a basic DNA analysis on the sad puddle of ablated tissue on the pavement, but based on the charred fragments of clothing and footwear it would be a reasonable assupmtion that the object of her considerable and forcefully expressed dissatisfaction had at some point had a Y chromosome. However, like the rest of the remains, said chromosome was so inadequate, ineffective and unworthy as to be undeserving of any notice.   

       Oh, and if you get your face slapped by an angry Polish girl, best just stand there and take it. Don't slap her back. That will take you straight to a bad, dark place you don't want to go, and if you're lucky you'll end up in the ER with lots of tubes stuck in you, and significant bits of your body in a paper bag by your bed. More likely, you just won't ever wake up again.
8th of 7, Aug 15 2012


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