A short story of the English language Essay Sample

There is an old narrative. I don’t cognize if you’ve heard it. ‘The Tower of Babel’ it was titled by those who wrote the most ancient and refuted book of the universe: the bible. There it was stated. harmonizing to what I’ve read that there was a clip when all the peoples of Earth were one and hold all one linguistic communication. At the reaching in a new land. they proclaimed: “Come. allow us construct ourselves a metropolis. with a tower that reaches to the celestial spheres. so that we may do a name for ourselves and non be scattered over the face of the whole earth” ( Ge 11:4 ) . So they did ; a metropolis and a tower were built. The tower could about make the sky. so the Lord of Eden came down to appreciate the men’s work. In looking what they had built. God muttered these words: “If as one people talking the same linguistic communication they have begun to make this. so nil they plan to make will be impossible for them” ( Ge 11:6 ) . I think the Lord was afraid of world as one. so he confused their linguistic communication and made them talk more than one. Never more was there one people in the universe. Mankind dispersed to distant lands. stating this same narrative in different linguas. Thousands of old ages subsequently. we still speak different parlances but from clip to clip. there arises a linguistic communication we all use to pass on with the most distant fusss with whom we don’t portion the female parent lingua. That linguistic communication. if I’m non incorrect. has come to be called “lingua franca” which was the name of a Mediterranean linguistic communication from the 11th C A. D.

This was a mixture of Italian. Grecian. Old Gallic. Lusitanian. Spanish. Arabic and Occitan that was used as the linguistic communication of commercialism and diplomatic negotiations in the eastern Mediterranean. From so on. when a linguistic communication was used as a vehicular or span linguistic communication between people with different female parent linguas. they would name that parlance a “lingua franca” . There has been evidently many “lingua francas” throughout history. harmonizing to the fluctuations of political and economic power. For illustration. there was a clip in which Latin was a “bridge language” . Why? Well. there was a clip when the Catholic Church was dominant being the Pope one of the most influential adviser of many sovereigns around the Earth. So. Latin was the chief linguistic communication in books ; being the most popular. and first book of all time published the Bible. Not merely that. Latin was besides one of the front-runners among nobility. Nowadays. our lingua franca is used in about every facet of our lives. and on most communities of our universe. One twenty-four hours I was watching a Nipponese film and the supporters went on holidaies to a part within the same state and used “Check in” when looking for a room on a local hotel. In a Thai play. the supporter flew to Korea and chose English to pass on with the locals. In about all states. they use the word “Shopping” when speaking about a promenade where you can purchase assortments of merchandises.

To be a pilot. aspirers have to larn a certain measure of plain-related vocabulary in English because it is the official nomenclature that is used up in the air. No more illustrations are needed because it would hold no sense to state you about the world you live through on an mundane footing. English. our lingua franca. has invaded the universe but it wasn’t an nightlong accomplishment. English. as all linguistic communications has gone through many incidents. Let me take you to the beginning of this short narrative of English linguistic communication. First. there were the Britons who occupied what has come to be known as “Great Britain” ; or at least a portion of it. They spoke “Celtic” . which is a term used to denominate the linguistic communication and civilization of those early dwellers of the British district. Subsequently. there came the Romans with their raging wonts of suppressing lands. They took over the Britons’ land in AD43. and for 400 old ages southern Britain was portion of the Roman Empire. In 410 A. D. . the Romans left the district but… don’t acquire excessively excited ; the Britons were non yet set free. Germanic folk from Central Europe moved due wests puting along the shores of Northern Europe. These folks included the Angles. Saxons. Jutes. and Frisians ; all enclosed under the name of “Anglo-Saxons” .

They invaded Britain and defeated the Britons. Those hapless people were pushed into the woods and the hills of the West. On top of that. their linguistic communication was modified and merely a twelve of Gaelic words were adopted into the new Anglo-Saxon parlance. What is more. the Anglo-Saxons called the Britons “wellas” . or in modern English: “foreigners” . By AD600. the “new locals” . the Anglo-saxons. were settled in Britain. spliting the land into five lands: Northumbria. Mercia. Kent. Wessex and East Anglia. The different “cynings” or “kings” . as they are called now. had changeless battles over the lands and from clip to clip at that place arouse a “bretwalda” which meant “the male monarch of all Britain” . The five lands divided the land into different speech patterns that. believe it or non. have survived until now. Another thing. which is really interesting. is that at that clip “Old English” ( the case in point of English as we know it nowadays ) was non the official linguistic communication. nor the most spoken one. “Old English” was simply a foreign linguistic communication that was good enriched by many Germanic words. Although much of Modern English comes from the Anglo-Saxon encroachers. there were many other civilizations and civilisations that contributed to its building.

For illustration. during the reign of one of the male monarchs of Kent. king Ethelberht ( reigned c. 560-616 ) ; English was influenced by Latin and Greek. How? Well. he married Bertha. the Christian girl of the male monarch of Paris. and was the first British male monarch to change over to Christianity. Furthermore. in 597. St. Augustine’s mission from the Pope to Britain prompted 1000s of such transitions. By the terminal of the eighth Century. Britain had been invaded once more. This clip. the Danes were the 1s who disturbed the Anglo-saxons. non merely one time but for several old ages. In the Anglo-Saxon Chronicles the first invasion of the “Vikings” ( as the Danes were besides called ) . when they destroyed the Monastery of Lindisfarne. was described as a awful twenty-four hours. They wrote: “There were awful lightning storms. and ardent firedrakes flew through the air. Heathen work forces sucked God’s church at Lindisfarne” . Vikings reign did last some old ages. but the Anglo-saxons returned to power with the triumph of the West Saxon male monarch: Alfred the Great ( male monarch of Wessex ) in 871. Those who study this minute in history say that King Alfred’s triumph over the Danes saved the British land and the English linguistic communication. Although he wasn’t able to get the better of the Danes wholly. he extended Wessex to West Mercia and Kent.

Alfred greatest want was to unify his people under a sense of “Englishness” . To carry through this ultimate end. Alfred advocated justness and order and established a codification of Torahs and a Reformed mintage. Furthermore. he strongly highlighted the importance of instruction and encouraged the usage of English for composing and talking ( telling. for illustration. the interlingual rendition of books from Latin to English ) . You might inquire what happened with the Danes. Well. they were driven to the North and occupied Northumbria. East Anglia and East Mercia. Their district was known as “Danelaw” . These lines between king Alfred’s district and the Danelaw ( divided in the North and East between the rivers Thames and Tees ) marked different assortments in the English linguistic communication. In the North. for case. there was the “Yorkshire” assortment which was full of Viking words as the 1s stoping in “TON” ( e. g: “Bolton” . “Pocklington” ) . In the twelvemonth 1000. nevertheless. there were Centres of power for the linguistic communication. When you come to roll which these Centres were. the first topographic points that may come to your head are London ( the king’s place ) . Winchester ( where they had the trains and people composing manuscripts ) . but really. the existent Centres of the development of English in the way in which it was traveling to be as modern English were topographic points like Wharfedale. where Saxons and Danes converged and negotiated significances to pass on.

This narrative has non reached its terminal merely yet. because in the twelvemonth 1066 the English linguistic communication had to confront another invasion. the Norman invasion. This first invasion was headed by Duke William of Normandy who launched his forces to assail the Vikings when people in British land were unassembled. non to state that there were many societal turbulences. From so onwards. and for 300 old ages to be precise. Gallic talking male monarchs ruled what we know now as “the United Kingdom” . It is said that William. the first Norman male monarch of the British land tried to larn English at the age of 43 but couldn’t controversy that he was “too busy to maintain it up” . The male monarchs that were to come after William were frequently nescient of their lands linguistic communication. This meant that French was the linguistic communication used for authorities. jurisprudence and disposal. Notice that even nowadays “Parliament” and “Castle” are used. words that have a Gallic beginning.

Furthermore. the Church was another environment where French was preferred ( apart from Latin ) . Away from the Gallic speech production tribunal. nevertheless. it is believed that English was the parlance most used among the citizens. It is supposed that Gallic knights married English adult females and had English-speaking kids. Furthermore. some linguists claim that by the twelvemonth 1250 “Anglo-norman” kids were larning Gallic as a foreign linguistic communication. as there were books prepared for English talkers to larn French. Therefore. it can be stated that the Gallic from the palaces did non replace English. but it did had an influence on it. Though I have already mentioned two words that are used in English and have Gallic beginning. I could add “Royal” or “Sovereign” . or even “Cafe” . and many. many more. Actually. some linguists describe the Norman Conquest as a approval in camouflage. because English vocabulary gained over 10. 000 words. Not merely that. the linguistic communication construction was modified. traveling from what is called “Old English” to “Middle English” . This alteration was seen particularly in the usage of prepositions alternatively of some word terminations. and in the order of words in sentences. By the twelvemonth 1350 a “Latinised” and “Frenchified” English was spoken by merchandisers. courtiers and bookmans of the capital.

This assortment gave them prestigiousness. high quality. and was known as the beginning of Standard English. This revival of English as the linguistic communication of power. was foremost shown when in 1362 it was used at the gap of Parliament. Here. literature had its part besides. Between the old ages 1380 and 1400. the Canterbury Tales were written by the male parent of the great English literary tradition: Geoffrey Chaucer. What a challenge it is to understand all the intending conveyed in his words from our modern position. Imagine what a challenge it was to publish his words taking into history that at that clip English was largely an unwritten linguistic communication. This is the sort of difficult work that William Caxton had to cover with when he set his printing imperativeness in 1476. Caxton was so. the first in publishing books in English. and he was the 1 that materialized Chaucer’s maestro piece. The job for him was that he had to accommodate Chaucer’s manuscript so most people would understand it and hence purchase it. Furthermore. as people at that clip tended to spell the manner they spoke. and there were many speech patterns. there were besides variant spellings for about every English word.

So he decided to follow “London English” . the English of the sovereign and the capital. Later pressmans followed into Caxton’s footfalls and adapted words to pages even before the spelling of those words was consensus among authors. This was the beginning of a more standardised manner of spelling and articulating English words. The “Great Vowel shift” was the name writers chose to mention to the displacement in English words’ pronunciation to the manner they are pronounced today. There was another important alteration of English linguistic communication in the late fifteenth C as theater captivated non merely the Crown but besides peoples of all sort. The English of the drama books and spoken by histrions modified English. During the Elizabethan epoch ( from 1558 to 1603 ) many literature authors emerged lauding English linguistic communication. It is impossible to speak about this English period without calling Shakespeare’s maestro pieces. One might believe that his words were formal and that he merely used the English of nobility. In fact. Shakespeare’s attack to words was the simplification of footings as he wanted his dramas to be popular.

For this to go on he wrote in a manner everyone would understand. From members of nobility to the common mans. they would all laugh and call in the same scenes and with the same books. That’s may be why after 100s of old ages his words are still remembered. Afterwards. the find of the Americas was another factor that altered English linguistic communication. English started to go to distant lands which provoked the acceptance of many foreign footings into English. Furthermore. many new words were created by the add-on of new prefixes ( e. g: uncomfortable. resistance ) and postfixs ( e. g: absurd. investing ) . Additionally. English was spread into the new settlements. peculiarly in the district that is now known as the U. S. A. There English took new speech patterns and words that marked a line between U. K English and the ulterior American English. Later. the Industrial Revolution brought with it many new footings to call the latest developments in scientific discipline and engineering. Furthermore. in these modern times the novel became the most preferable genre among people. This caused the debut of a wider scope of spoken and non-standard English into the written signifier

. What is more. in 1884. a undertaking to roll up a “New English Dictionary” begun. Old ages subsequently. the Oxford English Dictionary was created. It seems this was a clip of understanding because in the early twentieth C BBC speech pattern was acknowledged by public broadcast medium as being the proper manner to talk. By the terminal of this same century. English has already gone world-wide meeting with other local parlances in some instances as many ex colonial districts defended their national individuality ( advancing local assortments of English linguistic communication ) . There is much more to be said about English of class. but for the intents of this short narrative of English. it has been plenty. The lone thing left to be said is that as a backpacker. English has walked really distant waies. traversing lines and boundary lines. It has fought many conflicts and survived many invasions doing its manner to go today’s universe linguistic communication.

Mentions:
Genesis 11 ( NIV ) . ( n. d. ) . In Catholic Bible online. Retrieved from: hypertext transfer protocol: //www. biblestudytools. com/genesis/11. html Definition of tongue franca in English. ( n. d. ) . In Oxford Dictionaries online. Retrieved from: hypertext transfer protocol: //www. oxforddictionaries. com/definition/english/lingua-franca Kings
and Laws. ( n. d. ) . In British Primary History online. Retrieved from: hypertext transfer protocol: //www. bbc. co. uk/schools/primaryhistory/anglo_saxons/kings_and_laws/ Crystal. D. ( 2011. February 17 ) . The Ages of English. Retrieved from: hypertext transfer protocol: //www. bbc. co. uk/history/british/lang_gallery_01. shtml James. E. ( 2011. March 29 ) . Overview: The Vikings. 800 to 1066. Retrieved from: hypertext transfer protocol: //www. bbc. co. uk/history/ancient/vikings/overview_vikings_01. shtml Alfred the Great ( 849 AD – 899 AD ) . ( n. d. ) . In BBC functionary web page. Retrieved from: hypertext transfer protocol: //www. bbc. co. uk/history/historic_figures/alfred_the_great. shtml Cran. W. ( 1986 ) . The Story of English [ episode 2 ] . The Mother Tongue. Video retrieved from: hypertext transfer protocol: //www. youtube. com/watch? v=y3lV7_d7m-I & A ; list=PL6D54D1C7DAE31B36 # t=23 & A ; hd=1

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