history of the english language Essay

Submitted By lewis0201
Words: 442
Pages: 2

The history of the English language
The English language has changed in many different ways through time. The English language mainly changed through invasions.

Romans
The romans invaded Britain in 55bc ordered by Julius Caesar. Because the romans spoke Latin it grew into the civilization and spread across Britain. Because the romans where so successful at war they conquered many countries so that made the language change in many countries. Only around 200 Latin loanwords are inherited from the Romans - although by the 6th century the Church will have brought many more. Many of the words passed on from this era are those coined by Roman merchants and soldiers. These include win (wine), candel (candle), belt (belt) and weall (wall).

Anglo Saxons Anglo Saxon dialects form the basis of the language we now call Old English. About 400 Anglo Saxon texts survive from this era, including many beautiful poems - these tell tales of wild battles and heroic journeys.
Approximately one third of Anglo-Saxon vocabulary survives into modern English, including many of our most basic, everyday words: earth, house, food, sing, night and sleep. By the 7th century Latin speakers refer to this country as Anglia - the land of the Angles - a name that will later develop into England.

Vikings
For a hundred years the Vikings control most of Eastern England, before being pushed back into the North East of the country by King Alfred the Great. They remain in power in the North East until the late 900s, in an area then known as Danelaw. During this time King Alfred uses the English language to develop a sense of national identity amongst the English. These raiders and settlers bring almost 2000 new words into the English vocabulary. Words derived…