Europe Articles

Balkan Grammar – a Sprachbund

August 5, 2016 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Strange as it may sound, there is such a thing as Balkan grammar. The term Sprachbund ‘language league/area’ was first coined to refer to the unusual language situation in the Balkans. (Linguistic note: the word balkan is Turkish and means something like ‘wooded mountain chain’.) A glance at the map... read more

Famous Serbs: Top Ten

August 2, 2016 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

My recent trip to Serbia inspired me to put together a list of famous Serbs. Some are infamous. You decide. (I’m using the spellings I saw in Serbia.) I. Famous Serbs in Sports, Science, and the Arts Novak Đoković – professional tennis player currently ranked #1 in men’s singles and... read more

Belgrade, Serbia – a travel blog

July 26, 2016 9:00 am Published by 1 Comment

Belgrade Fortress When Phillip, my friend and wonderful co-author for Languages in the World, was in Spain this past month, he suggested we meet up in Serbia. I said “Sure,” especially since Belgrade is an easy hour+ plane ride from Bucharest. We met up last week. It was no surprise... read more

Transylvania II – a travel blog

July 18, 2016 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Now that I’ve gotten the pop culture notion of Transylvania out of the way in Transylvania I, I can deal with the real place, which is not at all wonderfully creepy (shiver, shiver) but rather very beautiful and bucolic with a rich history. Transylvania is a geographic area more or... read more

Transylvania I – a travel blog

July 15, 2016 9:00 am Published by 1 Comment

Transylvania. The name immediately evokes weird, scary stuff. My friend, Trish, has a daughter, Caroline, who went on a talk show for kids in New York City when she was 3 years old. Somehow the subject of vampires came up, whereupon Caroline informed the host that, “Vampires comes from Pennsylvania.”... read more

Ten Famous Romanians Plus Two

July 11, 2016 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

There are many famous Romanians. Here’s my list: 1. News of the death of Elie Wiesel, the writer and human rights advocate, on July 2 reminded me that he was born in Romania. His holocaust story Night (1960), a shortened version of a memoir originally written in Yiddish, was first... read more