What does the Portuguese language sound like to foreigners?…

In my considered opinion, Portuguese sounds like a drowsy headcold.

I randomly surveyed a representative sample of objective language critics (my wife), and have the additional answer “tongue-twisted”.

We all know Peter Falk had a fake eye. But did Columbo also have a fake eye, or did Falk’s fake eye play the part of a real one?

Courtesy Wikipedia: Columbo

Columbo’s unsettling, uneven-eyed stare was due to Falk’s glass eye in the right eye socket. It remained a mystery for 25 years whether the character had one as well, until 1997’s “Columbo: A Trace of Murder”, whereupon asking another character to revisit the crime scene with him he jokes: “You know, three eyes are better than one.”

Is it true that native English speakers can’t pronounce geminate consonants?

As other respondents have said, we do in word boundaries. I don’t do morpheme boundaries myself (I pronounce wholly and holy the same).

We *used* to have geminates, of course, which is why we have them still in spelling. That’s why -d- between two vowels only survives in native English words if it was a geminate, like ladder. If it was a single -d-, it turned into -th- : father, weather < Old English fæder, weder.

Answered 2015-12-18 · Upvoted by

Logan R. Kearsley, MA in Linguistics from BYU, 8 years working in research for language pedagogy.

Do languages other than Turkish have intensified adjectives? How are these intensified adjectives constructed? I am especially interested in the case of Japanese.

To add to Achilleas Vortselas’ answer for Greek,

The prefix παν- “all” is another intensifier, which was also in use in Ancient Greek. So πάμμαυρος “all-black” (which is not ancient), παμμάταιος “all-vain” (which is).

Greek also has superlative adjectives (so μαυρότατος “blackest”).

And a colloquial (negative) intensifying prefix is in fact… καρα-, which is Turkish kara– in OP’s question. This is mostly used with nouns, e.g. καράβλαχος (not “black Wallachian”, but “damn hillbilly”), but it does extend to verbs (καρατσεκάρω “black + English check: “I’ll damn well check”), and occasionally adjectives:  Google has 673 instances of καραάσχετο, Internet Greek for “damned irrelevant” (i.e. “this is irrelevant to the thread, but…”)

Could and should Australia change its name to the United States of Australia just so it can call itself the USA?

Rather than join the United States of Mexico in adopting a name that won’t make a difference, the easier way for Australia to subvert chants of “USA! USA!” is through appropriate use of Syncopation. As follows:


This is not to be confused with German “Aus! Aus! Aus! Das Spiel ist Aus!”, for when Germany won the World Cup in 1954.

Really, Quora. My answer needs to be longer. OK, I tried it out on an American friend living here, and she was suitably annoyed. (The A-U-S version, not the Aus! Aus! version.) Does that help?