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  #61  
Old 01-12-2015, 12:58 PM
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I never understood why they didn't make sure that William and Harry learn decent French, as it's an official language in Canada. Charles and Diana could have hired a French speaking Nanny and let them grow up more or less bilingual. It would have been fairly easy to pick up the language from early on.
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  #62  
Old 01-12-2015, 01:06 PM
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Both William & Catherine NEED to be fluent in French, [as will George]. I hope they are taking steps to become so...and ensure the young Prince does too.
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  #63  
Old 01-12-2015, 07:32 PM
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Originally Posted by muriel View Post
I suspect he speaks English, French, German and was learning Arabic.
And don't forget the Welsh!
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  #64  
Old 01-12-2015, 08:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Tilia C. View Post
I never understood why they didn't make sure that William and Harry learn decent French, as it's an official language in Canada. Charles and Diana could have hired a French speaking Nanny and let them grow up more or less bilingual. It would have been fairly easy to pick up the language from early on.
In all fairness I don't think it's just William and Harry. I don't believe any of the younger generation of British Royals are truly fluent in any language other than English. This is in direct contrast to past generations of the BRF and it's really a striking contrast with their young peers in the other Royal families, not just in Europe but in the Middle East and Asia as well.

I have no idea why the younger Windsors are deficient in this area.

The fact that English has replaced French as the lingua franca is not really the point, imo. As another poster pointed out, the ability to communicate in more than one language has always been a distinguishing trait for any royal or member of the upper classes.
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  #65  
Old 01-12-2015, 09:37 PM
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I don't think any of the British Royals can speak so many languages as fluent as Maxima, does! She is the queen for that too! and considering she was a commoner1
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  #66  
Old 01-12-2015, 09:49 PM
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I agree. Queen Maxima's linguistic abilities are dazzling. Same with GD Maria-Teresa of Luxembourg and her eldest son HGD Guillaume.
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  #67  
Old 01-13-2015, 12:05 AM
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Camilla french is atrocious
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  #68  
Old 01-13-2015, 04:06 AM
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Camilla gave one speech in a language she learned as a teenager but never used.

All those who heard her speech said she spoke flawlessly but with a British accent.

I would say that was quite good considering it had been 50 years since she last spoke/learned the language.
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  #69  
Old 01-13-2015, 04:15 AM
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But it is Camilla - so even an attempt with the clear understanding that she hasn't even attempted the language in a serious way since the 1960s isn't a good enough excuse. She must be castigated for even trying.
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  #70  
Old 01-13-2015, 04:23 AM
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Is this a competition about who speaks the most languages? William and Catherine don't need to speak a whole bunch of languages, but I agree that they should speak French.
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  #71  
Old 01-13-2015, 06:01 AM
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Any born royal and raised royal has to speak languages. OMG it is not so difficult for a child raised into a rich family to learn at least two more languages out of its mother tongue. They have full capacity in money and staff it is just question of willing and parents organization. In repeat I live in Greece where you very easily have kids coming from average families speaking at least English plus French or German. So matter could not be soo impossible for a young born royal For those who are not born and raised royal I would understand depending from which social class they are coming. Look at queen Maxima she speaks fluently at least 4 languages. For queen Letizia I would understand she has not been raised rich so she speaks only Spanish and little English.
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  #72  
Old 01-13-2015, 07:28 AM
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Being raised with money doesn't mean you are good with other languages or have an aptitude for learning them. It's better they not use them if they aren't very good at them else they will get hammered by everyone for speaking so badly.



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  #73  
Old 01-13-2015, 07:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moonmaiden23 View Post
In all fairness I don't think it's just William and Harry. I don't believe any of the younger generation of British Royals are truly fluent in any language other than English. This is in direct contrast to past generations of the BRF and it's really a striking contrast with their young peers in the other Royal families, not just in Europe but in the Middle East and Asia as well.

I have no idea why the younger Windsors are deficient in this area.

The fact that English has replaced French as the lingua franca is not really the point, imo. As another poster pointed out, the ability to communicate in more than one language has always been a distinguishing trait for any royal or member of the upper classes.
It is quite bad if it's true that not many of the Windsors can speak fluent languages other than their mother tongue.

Edward and Sophie had French lessons in 2004 or 2005 in London as they were photographed arriving and leaving with French books, though how fluent they are is unknown as I don't think we have ever seen them speak in another language. Even though they are the Royals who go to the foreign weddings everyone else speaks English so they probably speak English at these events. They do go to Canada a lot and are the only family members apart from the Queen and Philip to have a Canadian private secretary and a lady-in-waiting so perhaps they speak French when in certain parts of Canada.
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  #74  
Old 01-13-2015, 08:48 AM
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I also think that the younger generation don't speak foreign languages because they even don't have the chance! They have travelled to the british realms and they have always been adressed in English. It's a pity, because I guess than only one foreign language would be fine!
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  #75  
Old 01-13-2015, 09:17 AM
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@Pranter. Money gives the possibility of no excuse. Royals can have nannies speaking a foreign language and private lessons at home. If you have all that you have only to work on your lessons. Special ability distinguis people who speak 6 foreign languages from people who speak 4 foreign languages but you don't need special ability to speak only one out of your mother tongue. Average kids have to find money and time to reach collective courses and they do manage to learn. So do not tell me that PC William or the York girls are excusable. Especially William since his birth he was the future heir. Some things are mandatory.
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  #76  
Old 01-13-2015, 10:31 AM
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Prince William does Speak French. May not be the best but at least he tries.
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  #77  
Old 01-13-2015, 10:42 AM
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Doesn't George have a Spanish nanny, perhaps he will learn spannish from her.
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  #78  
Old 01-13-2015, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by royalistbert View Post
Prince William does Speak French. May not be the best but at least he tries.
No he does not, he just managed to say some sentences in Canada. His grannny tge Queen can hold a full conversationnin french, Pcs Charles also. This is what i call "speaking" a language.
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  #79  
Old 01-13-2015, 11:30 AM
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Reading a text in French and saying a few prepared sentences is not "speaking" the language. Like I wrote a couple of posts before, I can read a text in German and Russian and learn a few sentences and a lot of words to speak at loud but it doesn't mean I speak those languages. I was learning them at school so I know how to pronounce and I still remember the Russian alphabet, but I've never tried to count them as languages I speak. I bet it's the same thing with William and most of the people in Britain with their French.

As Prince Edward, Duke of Kent was a pupil at Institut Le Rosey in Switzerland, I think he may be an excellent French speaker. I wonder does he speak German also? He supports widely the British-German relations and acts as patron of some organisations that work closely with the Germans. Plus, the Kent family seems to be more traditional in their royal upbringing than the QEII's family, maybe because of the direct influence of Princess Marina, who was a foreigner and who dominated her children's lives as their father died early. All of her children seem to be taught French very well in their childhoods. Prince Michael is a qualified Russian interpreter, but it's about his personal interests that he learned the language and not his upbringing. It was also stated that he has, in addition to fluent French, working knowledge of German and Italian. I saw a video on youtube of him speaking or rather reading a speach in German but I wonder if he really knew what he was reading or it was just like Camilla or William reading in French (that is, knowing how to pronounce words). On the other side, his wife, Princess Michael, is a true old-time continental noble lady in the matter of speaking foreign languages.

On the other side, there are the Gloucesters. Prince Richard is well-educated and even pursued his own professional career before being called to his Royal duties. Plus, he played some role in international relations of the Royal Family and at government's request, travelled some times around the globe, especially Asia. But I'm sure English was just enough for him to freely communicate with everyone. His mother was English but from an old and traditional noble family, so I have no clue here... Prince William worked in diplomacy, so I think he spoke some other languages than French.
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  #80  
Old 01-13-2015, 12:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fandesacs2003 View Post
@Pranter. Money gives the possibility of no excuse. Royals can have nannies speaking a foreign language and private lessons at home. If you have all that you have only to work on your lessons. Special ability distinguis people who speak 6 foreign languages from people who speak 4 foreign languages but you don't need special ability to speak only one out of your mother tongue. Average kids have to find money and time to reach collective courses and they do manage to learn. So do not tell me that PC William or the York girls are excusable. Especially William since his birth he was the future heir. Some things are mandatory.
Increasing numbers of people from around the world speak English. I hate to put it like this, but IMO, in today's world, French, Spanish or German are hardly relevant to most British people.

It was certainly a class thing for the Queen's generation, and your ability to speak multiple languages was viewed as being an obvious sign of a good education, but things have clearly, IMO, moved on from there.

If anything, perhaps, the younger royals can learn Mandarin and Hindi. They will probably have more subjects that speak Hindi than French.
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