The origin of English words

About 85% of words in the English language are from three languages – Germanic, French and Latin. 12% are from Greek and other minor languages like Chinese and Japanese. About 4% are proper names. Different languages had influence on English at different periods in history. Latin was the language of the Church. French came with…More

Actants

In any English sentence there are either zero, one, two or three actants. Actants are the “participants” of the sentence. They are either¬†people or things. In (1) below the action of “to rain” itself is the “zero” actant. (1) It is raining. “It” is the dummy subject. In (2) and (3) the subjects “Peter” and…More

Original Pronunciation of Shakespearean Plays

This is a fascinating introduction to the differences in pronunciation of Modern English and Early Modern English (Shakespeare’s time). Explanations and examples are very clear by linguist David Crystal and his son Ben, an actor.More