The Afrikaans Language

Misfits

As a native-speaking English person I know how much Afrikaans people are constantly ripped off by the English. Having a completely mixed up family I am also lucky to be completely bilingual. This all means that i have the best of both worlds, which I would like to share a bit of.

Afrikaans is an extremely expressive and descriptive language with words that can’t even possibly be translated into English like ‘soutpiel’ (not something I’d like to explain as it is extremely derogative towards English speaking people), translated meaning is salt cock.

It is also a gutterish language, which is often found to be difficult as far as pronunciation is concerned for the English. This is where we come across the ‘g’ sound in ‘Gerda’.

Then we come across expressions that ,if translated into English make no sense but in Afrikaans, make completes sense. Here we find expressions like ‘Ja, Nee’ meaning ‘Yes, No’ (in Afrikaans this is often used when agreeing with what a person had said), and Lekker Kak meaning Nice Crap (in Afrikaans this means that something is really bad).

So a lot of this makes no sense to the English but to the Afrikaans makes complete sense. The way that i have translated these meanings and expressions doesn’t even do them justice as it’s more-or-less a deffinition but not really, ha ha ha. Now isn’t that confusing?

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6 Comments

  • Reply
    Dimitrio
    May 6, 2008 at 10:33 pm

    Hey, It cool to find some one else web2.0ish in Pretoria, tho many people can’t believe it, I speak Afrikaans as well!

  • Reply
    Bok_Skippy
    May 9, 2008 at 1:14 am

    Can’t agree with you more on the subject of Afrikaans. I live in Australia and have made the decision to ONLY speak Afrikaans to my kids. My wife is Ozzie. It did feel a bit akward in the beginning especially in public. Now its an absolute pleasure as I have an extra special bond with my kids. I’ve had support from everybody here which helped allot.

  • Reply
    Jane
    May 12, 2008 at 10:08 pm

    As a Afrikaans speaking person living abroad I am glad to read that you are teach you’re kids Afrikaans! I can’t explain how nice it is to speak another language it just makes live so much more interesting and fun.

  • Reply
    Nikita
    May 27, 2008 at 10:48 am

    That’s what I’ve said a couple of times to some chess players I’m playing online and on my blog too…! Glad to see more people think that Afrikaans is a very expressive language…and I’ve found when it comes to poetry, you can play around with words more than in English….

  • Reply
    Ek weet van ‘n plek in Afrika « Chessalee
    May 27, 2008 at 10:51 am

    […] Afrikaans is an extremely expressive and descriptive language with words that can’t even possibly be translated into English…This is what meggwilson says on HER BLOG here… […]

  • Reply
    I know a place « Chessalee
    May 27, 2008 at 10:57 am

    […] Afrikaans is an extremely expressive and descriptive language with words that can’t even possibly be translated into English…you can read it HERE …. […]

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