Which Is the Most Beautiful Language?

Nicholas C. Rossis

The beauty of languages | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

Do some languages sound better than others? This is the question researchers from Lund University in Sweden and the Russian Academy of Sciences set out to answer, as reported by Big Think. So, does French sound silky, German brutish, Italian sexy, and Japanese angry as many claim?

To find out, the researchers asked 820 participants from several countries to listen to 50 spoken recordings randomly selected from 228 languages. After listening to different recordings, they were asked, “How much do you like the sound of this language?” They then could respond on a scale ranging from “not at all” to “very much.” Participants were also asked if they recognized the language. If they marked yes, they were asked to identify it.

Analyzing data from the surveys, the researchers found that subjects rated languages that they recognized 12.2% higher, even if they actually had misidentified the language. So, rather than…

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