The Babbel Blog

Online Language Learning

Fiery Tongues on Pfingsten

Posted on May 29, 2009 by

El Greco: Pentecosta

Monday in Germany will be a day off.  It’s Pfingsten.

In England known as Whitsun, or in the US as Pentecost, we at Babbel thought this was worth giving a mention since it’s got to do with some business that concerns us: Speaking in many languages.

It’s celebrated 50 days after the resurrection of Christ (Easter), and around the time of  the Jewish festival called Shavuot, which celebrates Moses receiving the ten commandments at Mount Sinai. Pfingsten signals the day when the Holy Spirit descended upon the Apostles and gave them the ability to understand and speak all languages. According to the Bible, they went out into Jerusalem prophesying and speaking in languages that all the people in Jerusalem could understand — also known as speaking in tongues.

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New Vocab Package “Politics and Voting” in time for EU Elections

Posted on May 28, 2009 by


Though we at Babbel are of course internationally minded and outward-looking, we can’t deny that we’re based in Europe — in Berlin, to be exact. The languages we teach — English, French, Spanish, German and Italian — are largely represented in Europe, and among our over 300,000 users, there are more than a few Europeans too. So we thought it would be a good idea to get you in the Babbel community prepared for next week’s European Parliament elections with a special vocabulary package. Called “Politics and Voting,” it will teach you all the important phrases and terms to debate and make a choice about the European Union’s future….  whether you’re in a position to vote or you just want to persuade your European tandem partner!

Since 2002, the European Union has been officially urging every student in the continent to start learning a foreign language as early as possible. They’ve pursued a number of projects with the goal of extending the benefits of lifelong foreign language learning to every European citizen, improving the quality of language education, and achieving a language-friendly environment for all. Sounds a bit like, right? Read our press release here.

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Posted on May 4, 2009 by

Babbel at the Next Conference

We’re very pleased that we’ve been selected to present for the start-up track this year at Next09, which will take place in Hamburg May 5 and 6. Next is an annual networking and trend conference for the European web industry.

The theme  of the conference this year really resounds with Babbel: the idea is “Shared Economy”. The basic concept is that the more businesses share their success, the more they can ultimately profit – an idea the we too share!  Markus Witte, Managing Director and one of our founders, will present Babbel to some of the other 1500 participants, familiarizing them with our experiments with a “freemium” model and the fun of learning while helping one another out on the Babbel platform.

Markus will be speaking in Hamburg Winterhude (Kampnagel) at 5:40 p.m. on May 6. He’ll be the last speaker before the final keynote at 6pm.
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