language surely is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world. It is said to have originated in england
which was then an Anglo Saxon kingdom and to have taken its inspiration from many other European and world languages. Sources state english
as been a western Germanic language and pair us with other languages such as German, Dutch, Afrikaans, the Frisian languages, and apparently Yiddish (which is a High German language of Ashkenazi Jewish origin). Today however, english
is spoken around the world and can be used as a bridge language when two people communicate via english
, and neither of them shares this as a mother tongue. During the 18th century the British Empire helped to stretch the language around the world. Due to this we now experience english
as being a link language or ‘lingua franca' for International business
grammar is said to be relatively simple when compared with other languages. We escape the gender specific verbs and adjectives and their subsequent changes. The adjective ‘small' is universal to all nouns in the english
E.g. small car, small man, small woman, plane, hill, stone, river, etc.
This adjective use can be applied equally to plural and singular nouns (Small house – small houses). It is said that english
is a very democratic language. Pronouns she, you and he are appropriate in their use to all people, of age, status, race, religion etc. It is said that certain english
terms had to be changed for sentimental reasons. Words or phrases such as ‘Christian name' had to be changed to first or personal name, to create a non-friction with non-Christians such as english
speaking Hindu's or Muslims.
The number system in english
is said to be a straightforward counting system following a common pattern, forty-three, forty-four, forty-five and fifty-three, fifty-four, fifty -five etc. It seems that in some other languages there is no regularity to the number systems and each number has to be learnt and memorised.
Due to the complex history of the english
language we derive many comedic subtleties with our phonological pronunciation of letters and words. In Standard english
nearly every sound is spelt in more than one way. Though we have seen a great change in the pronunciation of our language, the spelling does not reflect this. Our spelling system has silent letters that are seen but not heard such as the ‘b' in debt, or letters that sound like they should appear as other letters such as ‘y' in many (mani). The ‘ph' sound is also linked with the letter ‘f' and words like physics can probably cause some problems to people learning english
language. Then we have many more words that share similar letter patterns or have a similar sounding rotation, E.g. soul, roll, hole, poll, cold, old, mould, etc.
There is also a peculiarity in the way in which we create words and also in the way we create our plurals and the way in which we use and detect them. Boxing rings are actually square; Pineapples contain neither of the ingredients which the name suggests. So where do we get these words from? The start to really interesting poem shows the irregularities in the plural system.
‘We'll begin with a box, and the plural is boxes; but the plural of ox became oxen not oxes.
One fowl is a goose, but two are called geese, yet the plural of moose should never be meese You may find a lone mouse or a nest full of mice; yet the plural of house is houses, not hice.'
Sentence structure can also be a puzzle and make you glad that you were brought up speaking english
: The bandage was wound around the wound: The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert: When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes, etc.
When we add the peculiar english
accents and dialects into the confusion, then we really do realise how lucky we were to grow up learning the fascinating language.