Author Topic: Pierre Gilliard  (Read 34543 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline AdamPR

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 3
    • View Profile
Re: Pierre Gilliard
« Reply #45 on: October 08, 2017, 01:14:06 AM »
Having grown up in Switzerland, is it possible that Gilliard knew any German or Italian? I haven't seen or read anything that suggests so, but many Swiss people do speak French, German, and Italian.

Obviously he knew French, and I'm certain he knew Russian, but I'm not sure whether or not he knew English well either.

Offline Превед

  • Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 954
  • Мой Великий Север
    • View Profile
    • Type Russian Without a Keyboard
Re: Pierre Gilliard
« Reply #46 on: October 08, 2017, 05:11:52 AM »
Having grown up in Switzerland, is it possible that Gilliard knew any German or Italian? I haven't seen or read anything that suggests so, but many Swiss people do speak French, German, and Italian.

Obviously he knew French, and I'm certain he knew Russian, but I'm not sure whether or not he knew English well either.

There were certainly plans and efforts to teach German in some or all high schools and some lower schools in his native Francophone Canton of Vaud in the last half of the 19th century. But whether it by that time had become mandatory in all high schools (as it appears to be today) I cannot say for sure. You can probably find the answer in this book:

Blaise Extermann: «Une langue étrangère et nationale. Histoire de l’enseignement de l’allemand en Suisse romande (1790-1940)», Editions Alphil, Presses universitaires suisses, 2013.

I would say it's quite likely that Gilliard, as a Vaudois born in 1879 (when German had enormous and rising prestige for the middle classes due to the unification and ensuing economic boom) and as a gifted and professional linguist knew German. It is much less likely that he knew Italian or English.
Березы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и березы», 1843 / 1856)