August 5, 2013

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Polygot Teen Speaks 23 Languages and Picks Persian as His Favourite

Persian is the favourite language of one of the few people who has real authority when it comes to comparing languages: 17-year-old Tim Doner. A famous self-taught “polyglot,” Doner knows 23 languages. On an Australian morning news programme, Sunrise, where the hosts asked him to pick his favourite, he selected Persian without hesitation. Doner even recited a few lines from the celebrated 14th century Iranian poet Hafez, leaving the Australian anchors slightly stunned. (about 1:30 into the video below.)

It's true, there’s something wonderfully musical about the language. It’s not hard to see how Persian culture would have developed such a reputation for poetry.
(Max Fisher, The Washington Post)

Below you can see Tim practicing 20 languages.
Languages used (chronologically): English, French, Hausa, Wolof, Russian, German, Yiddish, Hebrew, Arabic, Pashto, Farsi, Chinese, Italian, Turkish, Indonesian, Dutch, Xhosa, Swahili, Hindi, and Ojibwe