The languages category features all of our blog posts relating to languages around the world. We post on topics and news about languages and people.

French Idioms and their English meanings

An idiom is a phrase or an expression that has a figurative, or sometimes literal, meaning. They are usually established in language by their common usage.

Idioms are often different from a country to another country.

Here’s a few French idioms and phrases and their equivalence in English

French Idiom Literally Translated English Idiom
Il pleut des cordes It rains ropes  It rains cats and dogs
Quand les poules auront des dents When the hen will have teeth When pigs fly
On ne peut pas etre au four et au moulin You can’t be at the oven and at the mill One can’t be in two places at once
Ce n’est pas ma tasse de thé It is not my cup of tea It’s not my bowl of rice
Filer á l’anglaise To take English leave Take French leave
Avoir le vent en poupe To have the wind in one’s sails All wheels in motion
Noyer le poisson to drown the fish To beat around the bush
Jamais deux sans trois Never two without three Never twice without thrice
Courir sur le haricot To run on the bean  To get on someone’s nerve

Russian language Day

Numbers in Russian.

Learn to count in Russian.

Number Written Pronounced
1 один a’deen
2 два dva
3 три tri
4 четыре chetyre
5 пять pyat’
6 шесть shest
7 семь sem’
8 восемь vosem’
9 девять devyat’
10 десять desyat’
11 одиннадцать o’dinnatdsat’
12 двенадцать dve’nadtsat
13 тринадцать tri’nadsat
14 четырнадцать che’tyrnadsat’
15 пятнадцать pyat’nadtsat’
16 шестнадцать shet’nadtsat’
17 семнадцать sem’nadtsat’
18 восемьнадцать vosem’nadtsat’
19 девятнадцать devyat’nadtsat’
20 двадцать d’vadtsat’
21 двадцать один dvadsat’ odeen
30 тридцать t’ridtsat’
40 сорок sorok
50 пятьдесят pyatdesyat
60 шестьдесят shestdesyat
70 семьдесят ‘semdesyat
80 восемьдесят vosemdesyat
90 девяносто devyanosto
100 сто sto
200 двести dvesti
1,000 тысяча tysyacha


Day of the week in Russian.

English word Russian word                 Pronunciation
Monday понедельник puh-nee-DYEHL’-neek
Tuesday вторник FTOHR-neek
Wednesday среда sree-DAH
Thursday четверг cheet-VYEHRK
Friday пятница PYAHT-nee-tsuh
Saturday суббота soo-BOH-tuh
Sunday воскресенье vuhs-kree-SYEHN’-yeh

How do you say in Russian?

In English In Russian Pronunciation
Hello Здравствуйте Zdravstvuyte
Good morning доброе утро dobroye utro
Goodbye Прощай Proshchay
Please пожалуйста pozhaluysta
Thank you Спасибо Spasibo


Top 10 Countries that speak the most languages

Which country has the largest number of languages ​​spoken?

At first, you might think of the country with the largest population, but surprisingly, the answer is not China, India or any other big country.

It is Papua New Guinea. It’s a country of only 462,840 square kilometers with a population of just over seven million. Despite its small size, this country has an incredible linguistic diversity with 820 languages ​​spoken.

Top 10 Countries

Rank Country Number of Languages
1. Papua New Guinea 830
2. Indonesia 722
3. Nigeria 500
4. India 400
5. The United States 300
6. Mexico 297
7. China 295
8. Cameroun 279
9. Congo 214
10. Australia 207


European parliament, English not official language after Brexit

English not an official language after Brexit

European parliament, English not official language after Brexit
European parliament hemicycle in Strasbourg / Image credit: Wikipedia

English not official language, MEP warns

According to a senior MEP, English will not be an official EU language after Brexit.

English could lose its status as an official language as apparently no other EU country has English listed as an official language.

Onced Britain leaves the EU, English will be stripped of its status warned Danuta Hübner. Hübner, an economist, is head of the European Parliament’s Constitutional Affairs Committee (AFCO).

There are 24 official languages in the EU; the UK identified English as it own official language while Ireland notified Irish and Malta notified Maltese. Both countries also list English as their second official language. However, when Ireland and Malta joined the EU English was already an official language. Therefore both nations opted to list their other official languages instead.

We have a regulation … where every EU country has the right to notify one official language. The Irish have notified Gaelic, and the Maltese have notified Maltese, so you have only the UK notifying English.

Even though English may be removed as an official language, “English is one of the working languages in the European institutions, Hübner commented, adding: “it’s actually the dominating language.” It’s one of the most frequently used by EU civil servants.

If they want to keep English as an official language, the remaining countries would have vote to keep its status unanimously, Hübner noted.

EU Regulations

However, an EU source explained that the regulations governing official languages are themselves subject to more than one translation.

A regulation from 1958 regarding the official languages of the EU, was originally written in French and does not clearly state whether a member country, i.e. Ireland or Malta, can have more than one official language.

Interpretations of the French wording of this body of text concludes that this might be possible, whereas the English version says otherwise.

The regulation states that “if a member state has more than one official language, the language to be used shall, at the request of such state, be governed by the general rules of its law.”

According to reports from the Wall Street Journal, ‘the Commission has already started using French and German more often in its external communications’, after the UK voted to leave the EU last Thursday.

The STAR Team

Source: Politico EU

Gaeltacht sign in An Ghaeltacht

English translations anger Gaeltacht

Gaeltacht sign in An Ghaeltacht
An Ghaeltacht sign in the region / Image credit: TCD

Gaeltacht community anger over names in English

In a 2015 annual report by the Irish Language Commissioner, the highest number of complaints under the new Eircode postal system related to the translation of place names in the Gaeltacht region.

Rónán Ó Domhnaill, head of the office of An Coimisnéir Teanga expressed that he was not surprised at the level of anger in the Gaeltacht communities. More than 70 complaints were noted in the report. All complaints related to the English translation of Irish names and addresses without any Irish version.

Conradh na Gaeilge, the Irish language group, stated that up to 50,000 household in the Gaeltacht area are affected by the new system and called on the department to amend it.

Rónán Ó Domhnaill also reported that the Department of Communications had ‘breached a statutory language obligation during the rollout of the postcodes – Eircode’.

Irish Proficiency

As of today’s report, there is a reluctance on behalf of certain government departments to identify jobs requiring a proficiency in the Irish language. Mr Ó Domhnaill stated on the ‘serious questions that arise on the State’s willingness to provide services of the same standard in both languages’.

Source: RTÉ News

The STAR Team

STAR Translation Services logo

New Languages Supported in Transit NXT Service Pack 9

Transit NXT Service Pack 9
Transit NXT Service Pack 9 ushers new languages to its arsenal

New Languages Supported in SP9

The new Transit NXT Service Pack 9 ushered in loads of new features.

As the localization industry grows, we grow along with it and enhance Transit NXT each time to suit the requirements of the industry.

One of the most important aspects of translation is being able to translate projects to and from one’s language; not just for the translator but the project manager too. SP9 packs loads of new languages in which you can now work. Gone are the days that you no longer have to depend on variants if your language was not supported; start working in one of the new languages now supported by Transit.

Eight Additional Languages

Transit supports eight additional languages and language variants. Furthermore, both Transit NXT and TermStar support more than 200 languages and cover all relevant markets in the target languages.

Asian languages: Tajik, Pashto and Dari (Persian); Maori (New Zealand); Spanish (USA) and International Spanish variants; and two other European languages are all the latest additions to Transit NXT SP9.

Language selection drop-down menu in Transit NXT
Screenshot of the source language [selection] drop-down menu in Transit.

New Asian Languages in SP9

Tajik (تاجیکی)
Tajik or Tajiki, also called Tajiki Persian is a variety of Persian spoken in Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
Pashto (پښتو)
Pashto belongs to the south-eastern Iranian branch of Indo-Iranian languages spoken in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran.
Dari (دری‎‎)
Dari (Persian) is the variety of the Persian language spoken in Afghanistan.

New European Languages in SP9

Breton (Breton: Breizh; French: Bretagne) is a Celtic language spoken in Brittany, France.
Spoken in the islands of Corsica (France) and northern Sardinia (Italy), Corsican is a Romance language of the Italo-Dalmatian subfamily.

Introducing Maori for SP9

An Eastern Polynesian language spoken by the Māori people – the indigenous population of New Zealand – Māori is one of the official languages of New Zealand since 1987.

Spanish Worldwide

Spanish (USA)
One of the most widely spoken language has a number of variants – Spanish (USA) being one.
International Spanish
Use Spanish (International) for standardizing particular Spanish language projects.

The STAR Team

The Ultimate Language Quiz by STAR Translation

Take the Ultimate Language Quiz

The Ultimate Language Quiz

Test your knowledge of world languages. Answer these twelve, tricky language-related questions and let us know your score in the comments.

The STAR Team

Pikachu in Hong Kong

Pikachu rename angers Hong Kong

Pikachu in Hong Kong
Pikachu toys line the shelves – its worldwide success expands from video games to other merchandise

Pokémon Pikachu rename leads to protests

The release of two new Pokémon games by Japanese game-maker Nintendo has angered Hong Kong.

As it is around the world, Hong Kongers are very familiar with the tiny, chubby, yellow-furred electric mouse known to them as Bei-Ka-Ciu. But a move to unify the names of 151 Pokémon characters to Mandarin Chinese has upset fans and “localists” alike.

Pikachu’s new Cantonese pronunciation sounds like Bei-ka-jau – nothing like its original.

Regional Pride

The name change, which may seems trivial to some, is part of a bigger problem in Hong Kong as locals see it as the “mainlandization” in the current climate.

Nintendo’s decision to translate all game characters “ignores Hong Kong’s culture,” a spokesman from a Facebook group known as Petition to keep Regional Chinese Translations of Pokémon said. “There’s no respect for it.”

“We are aware of the reasons behind Nintendo’s translation, presumably to make it easier for purposes such as publicity, but the move ignores a lot of players. We hope the Hong Kong market can be taken seriously and treated sincerely.” Locals, fans and activists took to the streets at the Japanese consulate to protest because they believe Cantonese — along with culture and tradition in Hong Kong — is being supplanted by Mandarin.

Regional Language

Cantonese is spoken in Hong Kong, while Mandarin Chinese is the official tongue of Mainland China. The Chinese government sees Cantonese as one of the many dialects used throughout China; however, those protesting believe Cantonese is a proper language and on par with Mandarin.

A Cultural Icon

“Pikachu has been in Hong Kong for more than 20 years,” said Sing Leung, one of those who took part in the demonstration. “It is not simply a game or comic book, it is the collective memory of a generation.”

Chinese Variants

There are different variants of Chinese depending on region. We offer Chinese translation for all variants.

The STAR Team

Source: BBC World News

Coleslaw and dips, Irish

9 Irish Language Translations, so bad they’re good

9 Hilarious Irish Language Translations

The Irish language is beautiful, but it also finds itself playing catch up with the modern world. So much so that it becomes blatantly obvious with some of these Irish language translations.

We found nine particularly unimaginative translations making their rounds on the Internet. These are too good to miss.


Coleslaw, Irish

Very creative.


Coleslaw and dips, Irish language translations

Feeling fluent already.


This is truly exceptional.


Hipster, Irish

The direct approach!




Laser, Irish

L.A.S.E.R: light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation.

L.É.A.S.A.R: Hmm.


Spaghetti, Irish

Keeping it simple.


Nua technolaíocht. Wonder what that could mean?


Wouldn’t have guessed!

The STAR Team

Source: The Journal

IEDR, Irish Web addresses showing fadas

Web Addresses showing Fadas to Become Reality

IEDR, Irish Web addresses showing fadas
Ireland’s Domain Registry / IEDR website

Irish Registry Domain to make Web Addresses showing Fadas a reality

Organizations and businesses in Ireland will very soon be able to register Irish Web addresses with fadas. This will change will enable Irish businesses using the .ie domain to also include any fadas contained in their names. Effectively, we will see Irish websites’ URLs with the fada included. That is, if their domain is an Irish name or word.

The fada is the acute accent or diacritic above all Irish vowels: á, é, í, ó and ú.

Recently, the IE Domain Registry, responsible for the administration of Ireland’s official Internet address .ie, has begun a consultation process to allow users to share their views about how the system should operate.

The registry will launch details of how people can register the fada domain names after the 21st of March.

We will be on the lookout for any domains using their fadas.

Read our article on 49 Reasons the Fada is Important in Irish

Graham O'Mahony, Blogger and Web Designer
Web Designer and Blogger
The STAR Team
Follow the conversation on Twitter logo @STARTranslation

Sources: IEDR and The