Did you know that few of the most famous figures throughout history were also completed polyglots?

Audrey Hepburn remains an top goddess that the silver- screen and also is regularly touted together being the most beautiful mrs to have ever existed.

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She additionally spoke six languages.

J.R.R. Tolkien, writer of the Lord that the Rings trilogy, was not only fluent in countless languages (some of which he teach himself)… that invented them.

Why to be these certain people urged to learn multiple languages? to be it as result of a requirement to survive or a must communicate?

Most importantly, what have the right to we as lover of languages ourselves, learn from your words, lives and also experiences?

Read on to discover out!

Thomas Jefferson: The Language Lover that Struggled to discover Languages

The joined States’ third president to be a member of Virginia’s elite and also spoke 4 languages. That learned to review Latin, Greek, Italian, Spanish and French while gift privately tutored – which to be the norm for guys of his society class. He too had dictionaries from a number of languages in his library – consisting of Arabic, Gaelic and Welsh, but no evidence exists the he ever before gained any sort that fluency in this languages.


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The united States’ third president thomas Jefferson spoke 4 languages and also learned to check out Latin, Greek, Italian, Spanish and also French.

Although Jefferson could read the languages he had studied in his youth, the struggled with spoken fluency.

”I recognize the French so imperfectly regarding be incertain whether those come whom i speak and also myself mean the very same thing.” – Jefferson come William temple Franklin, 1784.

It wasn’t until he had spent part time living in France together the American ambassador, the he to be able to accomplish fluency in the French language, falling hard for it along the way.

The French language is unquestionably an essential object of education. The habit of speaking it can only be acquired by conversation.”Jefferson to Dugald Stewart, 1789.

Jefferson acknowledged quite early on the necessary relationship the the American people would share with the Spanish language and allegedly learned it while analysis from a borrowed copy the Don Quixote and also a publication on Spanish grammar. We are allowed to be a teeny bit sceptical in acquisition this together fact, as former US President man Adams listed in his journal:

”As to Spanish, it was so simple that he had actually learned it, through the aid of a Don Quixote lent that by Mr. Cabot, and also a grammar, in the food of a i to Europe, top top which he was however nineteen days at sea. Yet Mr. Jefferson tells big stories…” –John Adams, 1804.

Whether or not Jefferson was blowing his very own trumpet remains irrelevant come our cause. What us can learn from the ex-President is one very important detail – one the is on regular basis touted right here on Fluent in 3 month (Fi3M).

If you want to discover a language and accomplish fluency in it, you should start speaking it.

People regularly struggle v language in an scholastic setting. The not till after they leave the classroom and start living the language that true progress begins to be made.

Audrey Hepburn: “Nothing is Impossible”

Screen goddess Audrey Hepburn to be a understand of many tongues. The actress spoke six languages, reportedly fluent in English, Dutch, French, Spanish, German and also Italian.


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Audrey Hepburn, star of Breakfast in ~ Tiffany"s, spoke 6 languages.

Hepburn to be the boy of a dutch Baroness and British businessman. Born in Belgium, she spent part of she youth attending personal schools in the Netherlands and also England, where she would have accomplished fluencyin her native Dutch, English and probably French. In 1939, her mommy moved the family back to Arnhem, Netherlands, believing they would certainly be safe from human being War II.

Unfortunately she was proved horribly wrong once the Germans attacked Holland in 1940. Hepburn, a young teenager at the time, began helping the dutch resistance. She danced come raise money in secret productions and also ran messages.

She later spoke of exactly how she was compelled to conveniently learn dutch upon the family’s relocate to Arnhem throughout WWII:

“My mommy was worried about speaking English in the roadways with Germans every around.” – Audrey Hepburn

Malnutrition during the war dashed Hepburn’s aspirations of becoming a ballerina – for this reason she turned to acting. She and her mommy left Amsterdam, travel to both England and finally the US, whereby Hepburn became the Hollywood icon she is remembered as today.

Her job took her all approximately the world. She shot movies in France, Spain and also Mexico, stayed in Rome and travelled generally during she time functioning as one Ambassador v the charity UNICEF. Looking earlier on her life and also career, you can see that she had actually multiple possibilities to learn languages – methods that she obviously do the most of.

”Opportunities don’t regularly come along. So, when they do, you need to grab them.” – Audrey Hepburn

Hepburn was the type of human who no let setbacks stop her indigenous achieving she goals, actively pursuing what she wanted and also believed in. What deserve to we consequently learn indigenous her?

”Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible’!” – Audrey Hepburn

It’s never too late to start learning.

To roll v the punches the life throws in ~ you.

Most importantly, past all else – it’s your mindset that counts above all else, in regards come anything the you great to achieve in this life.

There space many an overwhelming aspects to discovering a language. My opinion has always been that it’s finest to ignore them. The roadway to fluency can seem long when you first look at it, but if you method it with the appropriate attitude, friend will be able to take that an initial step and continue confidently follow me your way.

J.R.R. Tolkien: The Polyglot that Invented new Languages

John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, author of numerous novels consisting of the Lord the the Rings trilogy was not just fluent in plenty of languages – he invented them.

A scholar in ~ heart, it to be Tolkien’s mother who presented him to languages, to teach him Latin, French and also German in his youth. End the food of his education, he learned many other languages such as center English, Finnish (which he supposedly taught himself), Old Norse, Spanish and Welsh. Languages he was acquainted with consisted of Danish, Dutch, Norwegian and also Russian.


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The One Ring from lord of the rings is engraved in Elvish, a language developed by J. R. R. Tolkien.

As if that wasn’t outstanding enough, this at an early stage knowledge offered him the grounding he needed to create his own languages, such as Quenya and also Sindarin (the Elvish languages, his many developed), Dwarvish, Entish and Black speech. Quenya, the High Elvish tongue is report to have actually be motivated by Finnish.

“Elen sill ûmenn’ omentielvo” – “A star shines ~ above the hour of our meeting.” – lord of the Rings

Tolkien learned languages, simply because he loved and also respected them.

”No language is justly studied just as an assist to other purposes. It will certainly in fact much better serve various other purposes, philological or historical, once it is studied for love, for itself.” – J. R. R. Tolkien, ‘English and Welsh’, The Monsters and also the Critics and Other Essays

From Tolkien, we can learn the the greatest level the success in discovering languages, comes quite simply, indigenous a desire come learn. That being, that as soon as you strategy language learning, you room doing it for the appropriate reasons.

Language discovering should never ever be about bragging rights. Instead, friend should have actually a solid an ideas for wanting to discover either another, or many languages.

Why is this important?

Simply, due to the fact that language learning takes time and also commitment. You room going to have actually days as soon as you feel lazy and also unmotivated. Sometimes it might seem choose an impossible task. Often, you’ll feel favor you’re as well busy to dedicate the time essential to accomplish the level that fluency that you’ve collection yourself.

As Tolkien suggests, if you deserve to look back to that one core reason for finding out a language – whether that be an interest in the society of a certain country, or a love for languages themselves – then that motivation that you require on those odd days where you’d fairly procrastinate will never be that far out that reach.

Eddie Izzard: “I don’t uncover languages easy, yet I have a hunger come learn”

Eddie Izzard is one English stand-up comedian, actor and also writer. He has actually long been an advocate for the prestige of language learning.


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Eddie Izzard was the an initial stand-up comedian to execute in lot of languages.

To highlight this point, in 2013 he performed his present Force Majeure in four different languages – Arabic, German, Spanish and French. He additionally spoke in Russian and Italian during the worldwide tour.

He is interestingly, the an initial stand-up comedian to perform in multiple languages. And for good reason, together he detailed the challenge in touring international countries, performing in English and also expecting his jokes come transcend language and social barriers.

“You could do certain huge cities yet you wouldn"t really get through. I desire to it is in there, obtaining through.” – Eddie Izzard

Izzard doesn’t case fluency in each of this languages. He procedures himself on percentages and also would only case to be “65% expert in French and also 30% expert in German”. However, that is his attitude towards discovering languages that has led to his consist of on this list.

“If I obtain stuck with a word or a phrase during a display I questioning the audience, “How perform you to speak such and such”, and they help out. I don"t find languages easy however I have a hunger come learn.” – Eddie Izzard

Izzard hits the pond on the head. You don’t need to be some kind of genius to discover languages. Girlfriend just need to be willing to acquire in there, do mistakes, have a laugh and above all, be doing it because that the ideal reasons.

History never ever Repeats – Or does It?!

Although each of these people throughout background took about learning language for very different reasons, they all have actually one thing in common.

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They recognised the need and value in finding out to communicate, no matter what the circumstances of their language acquisition.