"The Oxford History of English" traces the language from its obscure Indo-European roots to its position as the world's first language. In accounts made vivid with examples from an immense range of documentary evidence, including letters, diaries, and private records, fifteen experts describe the history of English in all its versions, written and spoken. They reveal the language's rich and protean variety over the centuries and chart the progress of all its versions, standard, regional, and international. With impeccable and approachable scholarship, they describe and explain its constantly changing sounds, words, meanings, and grammar. This is a book for everyone interested in the English language, present and past.