French and German
French and German are both languages of the Indo-European language family and are among the major languages in Europe. They share many similarities, including common vocabulary and grammatical structures.
French (français) is a Romance language of the Indo-European language family that evolved from Latin. French is an official language in countries such as France, Canada, Belgium, and Switzerland. French has a rich vocabulary, especially in the fields of art, literature, and cuisine. For example, "à la carte" means that you can freely choose dishes from a menu. Additionally, there are many common phrases and words, such as "joie de vivre" (the joy of living) and "c'est la vie" (that's life), which can help you better understand French values and way of life. French pronunciation is also very interesting, with many nasal and throat sounds, such as "bonne nuit" (good night) and "merci beaucoup" (thank you very much).
German (Deutsch) is a language of the Germanic branch of the Indo-European language family and is the official language in countries such as Germany, Austria, Belgium, Liechtenstein, and Luxembourg. German grammar is complex, with three grammatical genders and verb conjugations that are either strong or weak. German syntax is also relatively strict, with the verb typically coming in the second position of a sentence, and sometimes requiring different word order and forms. German also has many interesting and unique words, such as "Fernweh," which describes the longing to travel, opposite of homesickness. Another example is "weichei" (soft-boiled egg), which can also describe people who are weak or cowardly.
Interested users could go to the Language Learning Centre of the Hong Kong Central Library to find out more about French and German.