3,500 WordPress Followers

Written by Dyami Millarson

Our blog, which is where all the latest news of Foundation Operation X for languages, cultures and perspectives is published, has reached 3,500 WordPress followers as of today (that is, if we exclude e-mail followers from our tally). Today’s article will be a special update for our followers, as I am pondering a new language challenge.

I have recently been in contact with speakers of Afrikaans and I have been carefully weighing the option of starting an Afrikaans language challenge, which means I will have to study Afrikaans intensively for a prolonged period of time this year in order to master the language fully.

I am definitely interested in that language challenge, because it would be quite interesting to master this language that is closely related to Dutch, and therefore also closely related to Frisian. I will study this language from the Frisian angle definitely, because others have already studied Afrikaans based on their interest in Dutch.

It has often been asserted by speakers of English and Frisian that English and Frisian are closely related, but I think much people do not realise that Afrikaans is closely related to Frisian, particularly the Frisian languages as spoken in the Netherlands, while the Frisian languages spoken in Germany are somewhat closer to High and Low German due to cross-influence and convergent evolution.

Frisian as spoken in the Netherlands evolved alongside Dutch, its speakers were mostly in contact with speakers of Dutch, and so it is essential to grasp that while Frisian and Dutch have been intertwined in their linguistic evolution, it is only reasonable to suppose Afrikaans has a special relationship with Frisian as well, particularly the Frisian languages traditionally spoken in the Netherlands: East and West Terschelling Frisian, Clay and Wood Frisian comprising Shire Frisian, Hindeloopen and Molkwerum Frisian, and Schiermonnikoog Frisian.

I have yet to intensively study Southwest Corner Frisian to know its exact place in all of this, but it seems that Southwest Corner Frisian has a place in between Hindeloopen-Molkwerum Frisian and Clay-Wood Frisian, while probably leaning the most to the latter. I need to take a good look at this in the future, because it is an important question whether Southwest Corner Frisian is a language of its own that stands between two groups or whether it is almost indistinguishable from Clay-Wood Frisian, making it effectively an accent (i.e., a way of saying things a bit differently, but not too much and therefore making communication between the different groups comfortable enough to facilitate regular daily exchanges).

I believe that Southwest Corner Frisian may have been evolving to become more and more like Clay-Wood Frisian due to the latter’s sheer size in number of speakers. I would like to investigate this notion when I study Southwest Corner Frisian intensively someday, perhaps this or next year. I would love to make a list of irregular and strong verbs of Southwest Corner Frisian to take a good look at its grammar and I would be very interested in studying its phonology.

Let’s briefly return to the interrelationship between Afrikaans and Frisian. Frisian-speaking regions are known to be multilingual, and so I will have a multilingual Frisian perspective on Afrikaans. The Netherlandic Frisians, who are both Frisian-speaking and Dutch-speaking, will definitely feel a close affinity with Afrikaans and I believe that speakers of Afrikaans will feel the same. I would love to test this hypothesis with speakers of Afrikaans and see how much they feel Netherlandic Frisian languages to be related to Afrikaans. It would be interesting to present them with the different Frisian languages of the Netherlands and study their reactions to these languages that I believe are closely related to Afrikaans just like Dutch.

46 comments

  1. Congratulations on your growing following; that’s quite an achievement. I’ll also be interested in your study of Afrikaans, having lived in South Africa for 10 years and still only grasped the basic niceties of the language. I’d have had a better head start if I’d studied anything other than European romance languages. There is one positive though: the grammar is refreshingly simple!

    Liked by 5 people

    • You are amazing, we are so glad to have you here. I am very curious about the grammar of Afrikaans. Studying the structure of languages has always fascinated me. I want to know how they work. This has also been an important motivator for me whilst studying Frisian languages.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Well, we certainly can’t wait to read more about your findings between Frisian and Afrikaans. As you know, we live in South Africa and Afrikaans is our home language. We can follow a conversation in Dutch (not sure about Frisian). And then there are also some similarities between Afrikaans and German.
    Your studies about the different Frisian languages comparing to Afrikaans would certainly be very interesting.

    Liked by 4 people

    • I have listened to some Afrikaans songs in the past, it’s a beautiful and interesting language; I like the phonology (inventory of sounds) of this language, it is fascinating in so many ways. I will announce it on our blog when I am going to start my Afrikaans language challenge officially. I hope you will be eager to offer some feedback when I start sharing my findings regarding Afrikaans and the Netherlandic Frisian languages on our blog!

      Liked by 3 people

    • It took us a long time to get here, we appreciate the support and keep up the good work! I will announce it here on our blog when I officially start my new language challenge.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, indeed! It takes a tremendous amount of effort to update this blog, but we are still not yet satisfied, we will do our best to keep improving it and attract more readers who are enthusiastic about language, culture, philosophy, lifestyle and so on! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. A new milestone. I saw how much progress you made from 1400 to 3500 followers. I believe that we will go through next milestones soon. 🤡 hopefully you can achieve more,study more and make more contributions to save endangered languages. In addition, keep passionate about your projects always. We are always here for supporting you.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I am so thankful for your continuous support and for everything you bring to the table. I am so thankful for your cheerful comments and your wonderful insights and words of encouragement. I am always looking forward to your sincere comments since I value the honest feedback highly!

      Like

  4. Very interesting concept for a blog, I’ve never know of anyone doing anything similar. The name threw me off. It sounds like there are several of you that maintain the blog. That kind of collaboration is unusual. Carrot Ranch does something similar here. I want to thank you for the interest that Operation X has shown in my blog, Always Write. I’d love for you to promote my writing challenges, Writer’s Quotes Wednesdays and Story Chat. Writer’s Quotes has not taken off like I expected, since it was a restart of someone else’s challenge. I don’t know if it is hard for people to find quotes or just to write a response to them. Story Chat is a monthly challenge in which I publish someone’s unpublished short story, then curate the comments into a virtual book/story chat with the author involved. I would appreciate your thoughts.

    Like

  5. Really proud of your achievement and thank you for bringing light to a language that I know but I’m not too familiar with myself. Wish you nothing but blessings onward

    Like

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