Kate Troy wrote:
>The Russians I have met would not want
their language to be at all associated with the German language or the German
people. They consider German as very bourgeoisie and unpleasant sounding, to
boot. Not that the Russian language is music to the ear, not like French
or Spanish, which are very pretty sounding, easy on the eardrums, too. I
wonder if English is a pretty language to hear . . ..
Actually, Russian has so many
common words derived from German, and vice versa, because of the Slavic
expansions starting from V-VI centuries AD. I, too, consider German as
unpleasant sounding. I am Italian. Too many consonants and harsh sounds, as for
my ear. Russian is more music to the ear than you might think, and often people
mistake Russian songs with French ones, at first (think of Vissotskij or
Otkudjava). Russian has so many more open sounds than Germanic languages,
because its renderings of the original Slavonic terms were endowed with
additional vowels: e.g. grad (= city) which has three consonants
and one vowel only changed to gorod in Russian.
Of course, your husband may
not agree with me, Kate (I seem to remember that he is French, right?), but
my mother -- who speaks only Italian -- more than once mistook Russian with
French, when hearing some tapes I was listening to.