Collections: Thoughts and Things Celebrate, Create, Contemplate. Repeat.

Speak To Me

Collection of foreign language dictionaries, guides and phrase books.

 Quelle surprise, I’ll start with French.

Jr Classic Dictionary English-French

Copyright 1932 and published in 1939. The oldest member of the collection

A wonderfully worn, yet still vibrant cover.

Some of the new words: talkie, television, and tank.

Italian, Portuguese and Norwegian dictionaries,

Detail from the Visual Italian Dictionary.Instruments in ItalianMaybe I can speak Italian! But not sure how often ‘la tuba’ may come up in conversation . . .

The most recent addition to the collection is this vintage dictionary.

Russian English Dictionary for the Foreign Student 1

1962 Moscow publication printed in the USSR.

Russian English Dictionary 3During the Cold War, at least one person must have had a sense of humor. . . .Russian English Dictionary 2

The acronym and the use of color on the cover made me laugh in the used book store.

The first Berlitz Language School opened in Rhode Island in 1878. This Russian language book is from 1951. It has handwritten notes throughout the first half. Love it.

Berlitz Self Teacher Russian

I’ve now learned that Russian uses three noun genders, feminine, masculine and neutral.

Not too long ago a pocket guide like the one below was a key travelers tool.  While “I’d like a room with a view of the garden next Tuesday” might not be the most practical phrase to practice, it is imperative to learn please, thank you, and pardon me.  A woman at a shop in Victoria, B.C., mentioned she was originally from Hungary, so I thanked her by saying “Köszönöm”. It made her so happy it truly surprised me. Of course, that is 100% of my Hungarian vocabulary.


Turns out to be a well regarded program. The most recent positive review for a 1989 edition was posted today (19.7.14)

I picked up this book on a whim. Even if left unopened by the Spanish students in the house, it has a terrific cover and title. It may turn out to be quite a find. I didn’t notice until today, but the career of then 25 year-old illustrator turned out pretty well too.

He went on to illustrate Amy Vanderbilt's  Complete Cookbook in 1961

He went on to illustrate Amy Vanderbilt’s Complete Cookbook in 1961, and a few additional projects. . .

And hey, not only can I speak Italian (only) if percussion instruments are discussed, but I might be able to draw (stick figures) as well as Andy Warhol.

OK, maybe just for this example.

Gosh this was fun. Thanks!Madgrial's Magic Key to Spanish

Note: Sorry if visually shouting, my options for image sizes used to be a %  & now more of S-M-L.  Ends up huge or mini. Working on it. Would welcome any tips. Thanks

One Thought on “Speak To Me

  1. Eggplant on 21 July, 2014 at 11:58 pm said:

    Spanish language instruction & cookbooks illustrated by a young Andy Warhol. Who knew? I guess you never know where you could ultimately end up! I have the Amy Vanderbilt cookbook & it missed ending up in the for sale or donation pile because I happened to catch the formal name Andrew Warhol as the illustrator while looking for the copyright date. Treasure abounds!

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