15 November 2013

Video of the day -- a short history of the English language

6 Comments:

Blogger Ahab said...

That was fun! It's amazing how much English has evolved, and how many influences shaped it.

15 November, 2013 18:44  
Anonymous Bacopa said...

I think this video underestimates the impact of the Vikings. They didn't give us that many words, but they did give us the subject/verb/direct object/indirect object word order.

Old English was SOV like German ins today. French is SVO, but SOV like German when pronouns are involved and usually handles indirect objects with prepositions.

English works wonders with prepositions just like French, but often we just go SVOI just like the Vikings and modern Scandinavians

15 November, 2013 21:25  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Ahab: It's a very mongrel language -- well suited to our country.

Bacopa: Inevitably such a short summary will leave out some things -- it also misses the little-known impact of Celtic languages on English syntax, for example.

The shift from SOV to SVO is found in many Indo-European languages -- even modern German is SVO in main clauses.

16 November, 2013 07:08  
Blogger Shaw Kenawe said...

It's a living language, changing and morphing as more people speak it.

Wonderful video!

16 November, 2013 16:00  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

And now changing faster than ever, thanks to us internetters.....

17 November, 2013 09:24  
Anonymous Bacopa said...

I don't know what I was thinking. English is SVIO, just like the Scandinavian languages. Can't believe I messed that up.

17 November, 2013 19:19  

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