mother tongue


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mother tongue

n.
1. One's native language.
2. A parent language.

mother tongue

n
1. (Linguistics) the language first learned by a child
2. (Linguistics) a language from which another has evolved

moth′er tongue


n.
the language first learned by a person; native language.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.mother tongue - one's native languagemother tongue - one's native language; the language learned by children and passed from one generation to the next
natural language, tongue - a human written or spoken language used by a community; opposed to e.g. a computer language
Translations
mateřský jazyk
modersmål
äidinkieli
materinski jezik
母国語
모국어
materinščina
modersmål
ภาษาแม่
tiếng mẹ đẻ

mother tongue

nlingua materna, madrelingua

mother tongue

لُغَةُ الْأُمِّ mateřský jazyk modersmål Muttersprache μητρική γλώσσα lengua materna äidinkieli langue maternelle materinski jezik madrelingua 母国語 모국어 moedertaal morsmål język ojczysty língua materna родной язык modersmål ภาษาแม่ anadil tiếng mẹ đẻ 母语
References in classic literature ?
The heroic books, even if printed in the character of our mother tongue, will always be in a language dead to degenerate times; and we must laboriously seek the meaning of each word and line, conjecturing a larger sense than common use permits out of what wisdom and valor and generosity we have.
Slowly he crept toward her, and now he spoke; but this time there fell upon Tarzan's surprised ears a language he could understand; the last one that he would ever have thought of employing in attempting to converse with human beings--the low guttural barking of the tribe of great anthropoids--his own mother tongue.
We call them the first men--we speak their language quite as much as we do our own; only in the rituals of the temple do we make any attempt to retain our mother tongue.
Gliddon- and you, Silk -- who have travelled and resided in Egypt until one might imagine you to the manner born -- you, I say who have been so much among us that you speak Egyptian fully as well, I think, as you write your mother tongue -- you, whom I have always been led to regard as the firm friend of the mummies -- I really did anticipate more gentlemanly conduct from you.
I pass my life with my wife, children, and friends; my pursuits are hunting and fishing, but I keep neither hawks nor greyhounds, nothing but a tame partridge or a bold ferret or two; I have six dozen or so of books, some in our mother tongue, some Latin, some of them history, others devotional; those of chivalry have not as yet crossed the threshold of my door; I am more given to turning over the profane than the devotional, so long as they are books of honest entertainment that charm by their style and attract and interest by the invention they display, though of these there are very few in Spain.
These root words were so similar to those in use among the great anthropoids as to suggest that the language of the Manus was the mother tongue.
Before coming to England he had caused to be whipped to death sundry 'Natives'--nomadic persons, encamping now in Asia, now in Africa, now in the West Indies, and now at the North Pole--vaguely supposed in Cloisterham to be always black, always of great virtue, always calling themselves Me, and everybody else Massa or Missie (according to sex), and always reading tracts of the obscurest meaning, in broken English, but always accurately understanding them in the purest mother tongue.
The poor Frenchman, forgetting his conventional language, had taken to his own mother tongue, to utter a last appeal
I have been made to tend the little girls in the lower schoolroom, and to talk French to the Misses, until I grew sick of my mother tongue.
Still, with an unshaken confidence that the English tongue was somehow the mother tongue of the whole world, only the people were too stupid to know it, Mr Meagles harangued innkeepers in the most voluble manner, entered into loud explanations of the most complicated sort, and utterly renounced replies in the native language of the respondents, on the ground that they were 'all bosh.
All varieties of human speech are like his mother tongue to this rare man.
When I get mad I have to fall back on our dear old mother tongue.