"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more
To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.
This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.
This book provides the fullest account ever published of the external influences on English during the first thousand years of its formation. In doing so it makes profound contributions to the history of English and of western culture more generally.
English is a Germanic language but altogether different from the other languages of that family. Professor Miller shows how and why the Anglo-Saxons began to borrow and adapt words from Latin and Greek. He provides detailed case studies of the processes by which several hundred of them entered English. He also considers why several centuries later the process of importation was renewed and accelerated. He describes the effects of English contacts with the Celts, Vikings, and French, and the ways in which these altered the language's morphological and syntactic structure. He shows how loanwords from French, for example, not only increased the richness of English derivation but resulted in a complex competition between native and borrowed suffixes.
Gary Miller combines historical, cultural, and linguistic perspectives. His scholarly, readable, and always fascinating account will be of enduring value to everyone interested in the history of English.