Greek To Me: Mapping Mutual Incomprehension (StrangeMaps)

[Editor's note: This cartogram shows which languages cultures point to when they "just don't get it". Thanks Michael!]

Republished from StrangeMaps.
Originally published February 26, 2009.

greektome

“When an English speaker doesn’t understand a word of what someone says, he or she states that it’s ‘Greek to me’. When a Hebrew speaker encounters this difficulty, it ’sounds like Chinese’. I’ve been told the Korean equivalent is ’sounds like Hebrew’,” says Yuval Pinter (here on the excellent Languagelog).

Which begs the question: “Has there been a study of this phrase phenomenon, relating different languages on some kind of Directed Graph?” Well apparently there has, even if only perfunctorily, and the result is this cartogram.

Continue reading at StrangeMaps . . .

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