Foreign-Languages


Figure 1.-- Many French words will be familar to English readers. This is in part because the French language, brought by the Normans, played such an important role in the development of the English language. The importance of France in the world of fashion has also caused many French terms to be incorporated into English in modern times. The entemology in fact provides use insights into fashion trends. French post cards provide many illustrations of period dress..

We will archive foreign language terms here. We will use English language definitions, although we may try to add foreign language definitions in the future. At the least the alphabetical listing of foreign terms will help our non-English speakers find the topics of interest. We also plan to use this page to follow foreign-language fashion terms which provide insights into fashion developments. Again this project will require some time to persue so it will be a while before we will be able to compile a substantial list.

Specific Languages

We have developed informatuion about clothing terms used in several different languages. Here are ability to collect information on languages is limited by our nability to write and disply any other characters other than those in the Riman alphabet. We have collected infoirmation on Japanese, but here we have had to use the aliterative version of the Japanese word, not a ver effective procedure. We incourage HBC readers to add words to the various glossaries that we have compiled here.

Dutch

HBC has done quite a bit of work on Dutch children's clothes. We have, however, justr begun to compile a list of Dutch clothing terms. Hopefully this will help our Dutch readers find the garment and other important pages that they are looking for. Our Dutch readers are incouraged to submit additionjal imprtant terms.

English

The history of the English language is a fascinating story and of considerable importance in modern history. One the most recent chapter in that story is the developmen of Internet English. Here we will persue the history of the English language. Most English-language terms are addressed on the main glossary page as this is an English language site. Here we will list differences we know of concerning different versions of English as they pertain to clothing. While most of the terms are understood in both countries some terms are more common in each country and some terms can be the cause of misunderstandings. Most English-language terms are addressed on the main English-language glossary page. Here we will just list the terms that have different meanings in America and England. In addition, many English people were enamored by the exotic sights, tastes, and smells of India, the jewl in the British crown.

French

Many French words will be familar to English readers. This is in part because the French language, brought by the Normans, played such an important role in the development of the English language. The importance of France in the world of fashion has also caused many French terms to be incorporated into English in modern times. The entemology in fact provides use insights into fashion trends. The listing will also assist our French readers in finding HBC pages of interest.

German

We have only begun our German glossary. Right now we only have a few words, but we plan to build on it as we acquite more information about Germany.

Italian

We have also only begun our Italian glossary, but hope to gradually expand it, hopefully with help from our Italian readers.

Japanese

We have only just begun our Japanese glossary, pulling together the Japanese terms from the Japanese section of HBC. Hopefully our Japanese readers will provide us more Japanese terms to add to the glossary.

Portuguese

We have also only begun our Portuguese glossary, but hope to gradually expand it, hopefully with help from our Brazilain and Portuguese readers.

Spanish

Many Spanish clothing terms are distinct, but there are also a lot of similarities with English and French. In terms of clothing and fashion terms, the general trend has been the adoption of many English and foreign terms into Spanish. Relatively few Spanish clothing terms have become English terms. Several terms like "sombrero" have become recognizeable in English, but only a few like "poncho" have been incorporated into English.

Lanuage Trends

For many years in Europe first Latin and then French were considered to be the languages of diplomacy. Latin was also the language od serious scholaely inquiry theought the medieval era. Increasingly in the 21st century English has become an international language. A study by a British linguist concludes that the world's labguage system has come to "a point of crisis and is rapidly restructuring. Major countries like India have so many languages that only the adoption of English made the country possible. He concludes that English will probably be the essential language for international communication in the 21st century. It is the most common choice as a second language by people around the world. He projects, however, that the percentage of the world's population speaking English as a first labguage will decline markedly in the century. The language with the greatest number of native speakers is Chinese -- about 1.1 billion people. The other major languages are English (0.4 billion), Hundi/Urdu (0.3 billion), Spanish (0.3 billion), and Arabic (0.2 billion). Other major languages are Portuguese, Russian, Bengali, Japanese, and German. While many people will choose to study English as a second language, the percentage of native English speakers will fall from 9 percent in the mid-20th century to 5 prcent in the mid-21st century. Many languages are going extinct. There may be about 6,000 modern languages cyrrently in use. Perhaps 90 percent will probably go extinct and much of this will ocvcur in the 21st century. [Graddol]

Learning a Second Language

I have always wondered if children growing up with two languages might not have a more difficult time learning to read. I still am not sure about that. I have noted, however, some interesting research about bilingualism. Resarchers have found that bilingual adults are less easily distracted than adults speaking only one language. The researchers compared adults speaking English and othrer langusges (Cantonese, Tamil, and French) with individuals speaking only English. The researches theorized that individuals having to control two languages without allowing words and grammar to slip mack and forth might develop superior abilities to concentrate. Their findings also found what appeared to be age related benefits such a reducing memory loss. [Bialystock]

Country Trends

Country trends and language trends in some cases are similar because many countries, especially Europen and Western Hemisphere countries as well as several Asian countries are dominated by a single language. Several European countries have one dominant language: Austria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France. Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovenia, and Sweden. Many European countries have loost their regional accents. For instance in France, today it is virtually impossible to twll where a person born after World War II comes from. A similar process has affected Britain. Television is probably a major factor. Several other countries have language divides. Some countries have language divides. This is the case in EUrope and Canada. Most European counties have one dominant language, but several have languages spoken on a regional basis. Some Britons still speal Welsh. In several other countries there are more significant language divisions. Belgium has a sharp language divide between French and Flemish (Dutch) as wll as amall population speaking German. Spain has s substantial number of people speaking Catalan and Basque. One of the most sucessful countries with multiple languages is Switzeeland. The two major languages are German and French, but Italian, Romansh is also spoken. Luxembourg uses both French and German as well as their own basically Germanic language. Countries in Asia and Africa have much more profound language problems with their sprople speaking dozens of different languages. They have been forced in many cases to adopt the language of the European colonial power. It is hard to see, for example, how India could exist without English.

Sources

Bialystock, Elle. Yale University. Bialystock led the research team which included York University, Rotman Research Institute (Toranto), and Dalhousie University (Halifax, Nova Scotia).

Graddol, David. Science, 2004.







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Created: September 26, 2001
Last updated: 9:27 PM 12/29/2010