Is the English language the easiest language to learn for a non native speaker? Watch

clevergirl
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#1
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Many people complain that the English Language is a tedious language to learn. However, others believe it's a breeze. :rolleyes:

So I was wondering whether English really is the easiest language to learn. I say this because the English language doesn't have any cases such as dative, nominative or accusative whereas German and French do. Also, our whole syntax and lexis is pretty basic, for instance, English doesn't follow any word order rules such as German, and neither does it have past participles or Genders, for example, masculine, feminine or neuter.

Thus, is the English language just an easy language with no real intense grammar rules or is it a mind boggling array of letters that have no sense even to the native speaker?


What's your view?
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Topmanfaz
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It is much easier than French but sounds nowhere near as awesome :yep:
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username239687
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It's easier to learn than most, and at ^^^ ugh french sounds awful
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Cynical Optimist
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Easy grammar, huge vocabulary though... But overall, fairly easy. Plus the media that shows English all over the world makes it easier for people...
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sarahstar786
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ive heard its one of the hardest to learn..particularly with pronounciation..consider the many ways the letter c can be pronounced and theres no real consistent rule..
personally i find french kinda difficult..why is everything or most thing given a gender?
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clevergirl
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(Original post by Topmanfaz)
It is much easier than French but sounds nowhere near as awesome :yep:
Are you French? If you are then what does the English Language sound like to a foreign person such as yourself? Does it sound robust, quaint or heavy and clumsy?
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Absinth
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Irregularities in the grammatical rules can arguably make it even more difficult for foreigners to grasp, not to mention spelling/pronunciation rules (in which a lot of English people still make mistakes!)
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Livilah
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I am a native speaker, so maybe not the best person to answer, but I do know a lot of non-native speakers. English is very confusing because it has almost no rules. The pronunciation is different from word to word (cough, bough for example) and there is not just one simple way to do anything (house-houses, mouse-mice). Also, we had two words for many things, but no word for others. Without rules, you just have to keep guessing until it's right and eventually it will sound wrong when you make a mistake.
The reason that so many non-native speakers have such good english is a credit to the education systems around the world - it shows up our learning of foreign languages big time.
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nuodai
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French has no cases Except in pronouns (but we also have cases in pronouns [I/me/my, etc]).

Our syntax is far from simple, too... just think of how many ways you could rearrange this sentence for it to make no sense (even small modifications can make have a large effect on the semantics of it). Our vocabulary is huge, since we have words which evolved through the Germanic branch and ones which are borrowed from the Romance branch (Latin and French), among others... think of the difference, for example, between 'warranty' and 'guarantee'.

I won't go into too much detail, but it's suffice to say that our grammar is very complex. By that I largely mean syntax (the morphology is relative simple since English isn't synthetic), but its semantics and pragmatics are a bit of a barstool. In fact, even the phonology is confusing... we have an immense number of vowels compared to most languages.
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Malsy
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I think so yes and I think everyone in the world should know/learn it (alongside their own language if not english):yep:
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inksplodge
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I think it's pretty difficult if you want it to be concise. You can learn to speak English pretty easily - I think it's writing it that is harder.
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sheldonite
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I'm told its one of the harder ones to learn as we have loads of weird quirks - none of which I can remember!
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geetar
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I've always heard that English is one of the more difficult ones.
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clevergirl
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(Original post by Stupiemountain)
I'm told its one of the harder ones to learn as we have loads of weird quirks - none of which I can remember!
Here's one...

i before e except after c

:p:
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timotiis
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No. English is such a mishmash of other languages that it is incredibly tricky to learn well.

Consider the vast number of rules for pluralisation. Wharf -> wharves. Goose -> Geese. Moose -> Moose. Sock -> Socks. And that's in no way a comprehensive list.

The complete lack of sense and regularity in pronunciation, spelling, and grammar of English make it very tricky to ever learn fluently as a non-native speaker.

Languages which are easy to learn would include those such as Esperanto, which are clearly and simply defined, without special cases. By contrast, English is nothing but special cases.
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amani-puresapphire
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in my opinion its the easiest and most srtraight forward of all the languages i speak

does anyone know if this is why its a universally spoken/used language?
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denali
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I think English is really easy compared to other languages i have studied (Spanish, French, Swedish). I think it's because you hear English everywhere so you learn new words all the time.
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kaytee.
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(Original post by Topmanfaz)
It is much easier than French but sounds nowhere near as awesome :yep:
I was told it was harder for a french person to learn english than it is for us to learn french. There are too many words that sound the same that have different meanings etc.
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Lana-90
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I have been in England since i was 9 yrs old, having no knowledge of english when i first came. i definately confirm that english must be one of the easiest languages to learn as was previously said no gender endings and the sentence structure isnt that hard to learn. english is linked to many other langs so once u kno it then the others become easier lol
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clevergirl
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#20
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Yes but what does English sound like to a foreigner, a non native speaker?
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