Mother, Hemp, Horse or Scold: When Tone Changes Meaning This entry was posted in language guru, quirk and tagged Bantu, Japanese, language, Mandarin, Tonal Languages on September 26, 2014 by Matthew Hamlyn . Tone is essential to conveying the intended meaning of many words and can often be the hardest part of learning a tonal language. Same Tongue, Different Twang – Dialects of Popular Languages This entry was posted in language guru, must know, quirk and tagged American English, Arabic, British English, Culture, English, English language, French, language, Portuguese, Spanish on August 20, 2014 by Matthew Hamlyn . Thinking about learning a new language, but not sure which one? There may be more choices than you imagined.