The rights of European Jews slowly lessened and eventually on November 28 1938 The Reich Ministry of the Interior restricted the freedom of movement of Jews in Europe, which meant that Jews would have a much harder time trying to escape Europe.
There are some exceedingly useful words in this language. Schlag,for example; and Zug. There are three-quarters of a column ofSchlags in the dictionary, and a column and a half of Zugs. Theword Schlag means Blow, Stroke, Dash, Hit, Shock, Clap, Slap, Time,Bar, Coin, Stamp, Kind, Sort, Manner, Way, Apoplexy, Wood-cutting, Enclosure,Field, Forest-clearing. This is its simple and exact meaning -- that isto say, its restricted, its fettered meaning; but there are ways by which youcan set it free, so that it can soar away, as on the wings of the morning, andnever be at rest. You can hang any word you please to its tail, and make itmean anything you want to. You can begin with Schlag-ader, which meansartery, and you can hang on the whole dictionary, word by word, clear throughthe alphabet to Schlag-wasser, which means bilge-water -- and includingSchlag-mutter, which means mother-in-law.
The inventor of the language seems to have taken pleasure in complicatingit in every way he could think of. For instance, if one is casually referringto a house, Haus, or a horse, Pferd, or a dog, Hund, hespells these words as I have indicated; but if he is referring to them in theDative case, he sticks on a foolish and unnecessary e and spells themHause, Pferde, Hunde. So, as an added e oftensignifies the plural, as the s does with us, the new student is likelyto go on for a month making twins out of a Dative dog before he discovers hismistake; and on the other hand, many a new student who could ill afford loss,has bought and paid for two dogs and only got one of them, because heignorantly bought that dog in the Dative singular when he really supposed hewas talking plural -- which left the law on the seller's side, of course, bythe strict rules of grammar, and therefore a suit for recovery could notlie.
Now observe the Adjective. Here was a case where simplicity would havebeen an advantage; therefore, for no other reason, the inventor of thislanguage complicated it all he could. When we wish to speak of our "goodfriend or friends," in our enlightened tongue, we stick to the one form andhave no trouble or hard feeling about it; but with the German tongue it isdifferent. When a German gets his hands on an adjective, he declines it, andkeeps on declining it until the common sense is all declined out of it. It isas bad as Latin. He says, for instance:
To continue with the German genders: a tree is male, its buds are female,its leaves are neuter; horses are sexless, dogs are male, cats are female --tomcats included, of course; a person's mouth, neck, bosom, elbows, fingers,nails, feet, and body are of the male sex, and his head is male or neuteraccording to the word selected to signify it, and not according to thesex of the individual who wears it -- for in Germany all the women either maleheads or sexless ones; a person's nose, lips, shoulders, breast, hands, andtoes are of the female sex; and his hair, ears, eyes, chin, legs, knees,heart, and conscience haven't any sex at all. The inventor of the languageprobably got what he knew about a conscience from hearsay.
There are people in the world who will take a great deal of trouble topoint out the faults in a religion or a language, and then go blandly abouttheir business without suggesting any remedy. I am not that kind of person. Ihave shown that the German language needs reforming. Very well, I am ready toreform it. At least I am ready to make the proper suggestions. Such a courseas this might be immodest in another; but I have devoted upward of nine fullweeks, first and last, to a careful and critical study of this tongue, andthus have acquired a confidence in my ability to reform it which no meresuperficial culture could have conferred upon me.
It is more than drawing lines on a map or bringing together many entities under a single government, unification is a detailed cultural process in which independent individuals come together to form a people and a loyalty, often sharing a common history, language, religion, or other factors....
In the German it is true that by some oversight of the inventor of thelanguage, a Woman is a female; but a Wife (Weib) is not -- which isunfortunate. A Wife, here, has no sex; she is neuter; so, according to thegrammar, a fish is he, his scales are she, but a fishwife isneither. To describe a wife as sexless may be called under-description; thatis bad enough, but over-description is surely worse. A German speaks of anEnglishman as the Engländer; to change the sex, he addsinn, and that stands for Englishwoman -- Engländerinn. Thatseems descriptive enough, but still it is not exact enough for a German; so heprecedes the word with that article which indicates that the creature tofollow is feminine, and writes it down thus: "dieEngländerinn," -- which means "the she-Englishwoman." Iconsider that that person is over-described.
Having pointed out, in detail, the several vices of this language, I nowcome to the brief and pleasant task of pointing out its virtues. Thecapitalizing of the nouns I have already mentioned. But far before this virtuestands another -- that of spelling a word according to the sound of it. Afterone short lesson in the alphabet, the student can tell how any German word ispronounced without having to ask; whereas in our language if a student shouldinquire of us, "What does B, O, W, spell?" we should be obliged to reply,"Nobody can tell what it spells when you set if off by itself; you can onlytell by referring to the context and finding out what it signifies -- whetherit is a thing to shoot arrows with, or a nod of one's head, or the forward endof a boat."
But how many kinds of sentence are there? Say assertion, question, and command? --There are 'countless' kinds: countless different kinds of use of what we call 'symbols', 'words', 'sentence'. And this multiplicity is not something fixed, given once for all; but new types of language, new language games, as we may say, come into existence and others become obsolete and get forgotten. (We can get a 'rough picture' of this from the changes in mathematics.)
"23...Review the multiciplicity of language games in the following examples, and in others:
Giving orders, and obeying them--
Describing the appearance of an object, or giving its measurements-- Constructing an object from a description (a drawing)--
Reporting an event--
Speculating about an event--
Forming or teasing a hypothesis--
Presenting the results of an experiment in tables and diagrams--
Making up a story; and reading it--
Making a joke; telling it--
Solving a problem in practical arithmetic--
Translating from one languge into another--
Asking, thanking, cursing, greeting, praying.
We can also think of the whole process of using words in (2) as one of those games by means of which children learn their native language. I will call these games 'language-games' and will sometimes speak of a primitive language as a language-game.