Kate Troy wrote:
> He said to me no, that it is indeed our dominance in the world, that
> to really make it any medium that you have to capture the imagination
> of America, that Spanish and French are extremely expressive,
> communicative also, in their own right.
I long ago came upon a quote by a Habsburg emperor (that I can't find
and thus have to give from memory). "I speak French to men, Italian
to ladies and German to horses."
And while on the subject of quotes about German there is Mark Twain's:
[Christian] Morgenstern's special gift lies in revealing the grotesque
irrationality of language (if there is an Elefant why should there not
also be a Zwölfant? he asks, tongue-in-cheek) and in using words and
sounds with an unexpected, freakish originality, such as in Die
Behörde (The Government Office) in which Morgenstern derides German
gobbledygook. In Der Werwolf he pokes fun at the declension of the
German interrogative wer (who) by inventing a Weswolf "whosewolf"), a
Wemwolf ("to-whom-wolf"), etc. Morgenstern would surely have agreed
with Mark Twain - and countless students of German - that he would
"rather decline a drink than decline a German noun."
Morgenstern's poem "Der Werwolf" appears on the page in both German
and English. Also "Songs of Fishes Under Water" but that would be
misery to read aloud.