Bonjour mes amies! As you might recognize by my signature greeting, I am currently taking my 11th year of French in school. Additionally, I am taking Psychology, Human Geography, and English Language and Composition which are all classes that deal with language to differing degrees. After studying non-stop this past week, I’ve finally had a chance to compile my thoughts about this spectacular creation: language.
Let me put it this way, imagine an alien species that can send the information from one individual’s head to another. They can transfer information, abstract ideas, melodies, and stories… but wait these “aliens” are humans. Language allows us to share our most precious, intimate, and innovative thoughts with others.
“In hopes of giving longevity to that which its own nature forbids to be immortal”
-Samuel Johnson (author of one of English’s first fully comprehensive dictionaries) speaking about the nature of language
Now this quote isn’t famous or anything, but I read it in my English textbook and it really caught my attention. How crazy is it that we have created a means of communication that can adapt to our culture and development as a species.
I know that a lot of people who read my blog are not from the United States (but if you are, hey Americans), and I think that it is so cool that this blog allows me to connect with people from all over the world. I even have a map in my room where I color in each new country that visits my blog. I truly wish I could learn every single one of your native languages, so that we could speak on an even deeper level. Knowing multiple languages gives you a mental passport to the world that allows you to communicate with people of all backgrounds, and if I could have a magic power, it would be to speak every language in the world.
But… sometimes language fails us. Have you ever experienced an event too exhilarating, happy, or sad to explain? A feeling that just doesn’t have a word? A situation that can’t be described? ↓
Here Are 15 Words That Don’t Exist In English
Hyyge (Danish): The act of relaxing with loved ones and good friends, usually while enjoying food and drink; the word is associated with coziness.
Komorebi (Japanese): The interplay between light and leaves when sunlight shines through trees.
Mångata (Swedish): The path of light that leads up to and is reflected by the moon.
Koi No Yokan (Japanese): The feeling upon meeting someone that falling in love with him or her is inevitable.
Pana po’o (Hawaiian): The act of scratching one’s head in order to remember the location of a misplaced object.
Treppenwitz (German): A clever remark that only comes to mind when it’s too late to use it.
Tuqburni (Arabic): “You bury me” referring to a love so deep you can’t imagine living life without your partner.
Greng-jai (Thai): That feeling you get when you don’t want someone to do something for you because it would be a pain for them.
Gjensynsglede (Norwegian): The joy of meeting up with someone you haven’t seen for a long time.
Sisu (Finnish): Extraordinary persistence in the face of adversity. A word that means a compilation of several English words like bravery, determination, guts, and courage.
Tarbiya (Arabic): Ongoing ethical and spiritual development.
Mudita (Sanskrit): Feeling joy on someone else’s behalf.
Datsuzoku (Japanese): A break from the habit or daily routine.
Kilig (Tagalog): The feeling of butterflies when talking to someone attractive.
Iktsuarpok (Inuit): The feeling of anticipation when waiting for someone to arrive.
I hope you guys liked this post. I recommend the book Lost In Translation for more of these!