A report on English language

The West Germanic languages
The opening to the Old English epic poem Beowulf, handwritten in half-uncial script: Hƿæt ƿē Gārde/na ingēar dagum þēod cyninga / þrym ge frunon... "Listen! We of the Spear-Danes from days of yore have heard of the glory of the folk-kings..."
Graphic representation of the Great Vowel Shift, showing how the pronunciation of the long vowels gradually shifted, with the high vowels i: and u: breaking into diphthongs and the lower vowels each shifting their pronunciation up one level
Braj Kachru's Three Circles of English
Countries in which English Language is a Mandatory or an Optional Subject
In the English sentence The cat sat on the mat, the subject is the cat (a noun phrase), the verb is sat, and on the mat is a prepositional phrase (composed of a noun phrase the mat headed by the preposition on). The tree describes the structure of the sentence.
Map showing the main dialect regions in the UK and Ireland
Rhoticity dominates in North American English. The Atlas of North American English found over 50% non-rhoticity, though, in at least one local white speaker in each U.S. metropolitan area designated here by a red dot. Non-rhotic African American Vernacular English pronunciations may be found among African Americans regardless of location.
Countries in which English Language is a Mandatory or an Optional SubjectEnglish is the dominant languageEnglish is a mandatory subjectEnglish is an optional subjectNo data

West Germanic language of the Indo-European language family, originally spoken by the inhabitants of early medieval England.

- English language
The West Germanic languages

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The West Germanic languages

German language

28 links

West Germanic language of the Indo-European language family, mainly spoken in Central Europe.

West Germanic language of the Indo-European language family, mainly spoken in Central Europe.

The West Germanic languages
The Germanic languages in contemporary Europe
German language area and major dialectal divisions around 1900.
The widespread popularity of the Bible translated into High German by Martin Luther helped establish modern Standard High German.
Ethnolinguistic map of Austria-Hungary, 1910, with German-speaking areas shown in red.
Map shows Austria and South Tyrol, Italy.
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Bilingual German-English sign at a bakery in Namibia, where German is a national language.
Self reported knowledge of German as a foreign language in the EU member states (+Turkey), in per cent of the adult population (+15), 2005
Selfreported knowledge of German within the nations of the European Union
The national and regional standard varieties of German
The Low Franconian dialects
The Central German dialects
The Franconian dialects (Low Franconian, Central- and Rhine Franconian, and High Franconian)
The Upper German and High Franconian (transitional between Central and Upper German)
Volume 1 "German Orthography" of the 25th edition of the Duden dictionary
42nd edition of the Österreichisches Wörterbuch ("Austrian Dictionary")
The Deutsches Wörterbuch (1st vol., 1854) by the Brothers Grimm
Austria's standardized cursive
Germany's standardized cursive
A Russian dictionary from 1931, showing the "German alphabet" – the 3rd and 4th columns of each half are Fraktur and Kurrent respectively, with the footnote explaining ligatures used in Fraktur.
The approximate extent of Germanic languages in the early 10th century:
Old West Norse
Old East Norse
Old Gutnish
Old English (West Germanic)
Continental West Germanic languages (Old Frisian, Old Saxon, Old Dutch, Old High German).
Crimean Gothic (East Germanic)
The German language in Europe:
 German Sprachraum: German is the official language (de jure or de facto) and first language of the majority of the population
German is a co-official language but not the first language of the majority of the population
German (or a German dialect) is a legally recognized minority language (squares: geographic distribution too dispersed/small for map scale)
German (or a variety of German) is spoken by a sizeable minority but has no legal recognition

German is most similar to other languages within the West Germanic language branch, including Afrikaans, Dutch, English, the Frisian languages, Low German, Luxembourgish, Scots, and Yiddish.

Old English

22 links

Alfred the Great statue in Winchester, Hampshire. The 9th-century English King proposed that primary education be taught in English, with those wishing to advance to holy orders to continue their studies in Latin.
The dialects of Old English c. 800 CE
Her sƿutelað seo gecƿydrædnes ðe ('Here the Word is revealed to thee'). Old English inscription over the arch of the south porticus in the 10th-century St Mary's parish church, Breamore, Hampshire
The runic alphabet used to write Old English before the introduction of the Latin alphabet
The first page of the Beowulf manuscript with its opening Hƿæt ƿē Gārde/na ingēar dagum þēod cyninga / þrym ge frunon... "Listen! We of the Spear-Danes from days of yore have heard of the glory of the folk-kings..."
(Pre-)Old English an other West Germanic languages around 580 CE
The approximate extent of Germanic languages in the early 10th century:
Old West Norse
Old East Norse
Old Gutnish
Old English
Continental West Germanic languages (Old Frisian, Old Saxon, Old Dutch, Old High German).
Crimean Gothic (East Germanic)

Old English (Englisċ, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest recorded form of the English language, spoken in England and southern and eastern Scotland in the early Middle Ages.

Inflection of the Scottish Gaelic lexeme for "dog", which is cù for singular, chù for dual with the number dà ("two"), and coin for plural

Inflection

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Process of word formation in which a word is modified to express different grammatical categories such as tense, case, voice, aspect, person, number, gender, mood, animacy, and definiteness.

Process of word formation in which a word is modified to express different grammatical categories such as tense, case, voice, aspect, person, number, gender, mood, animacy, and definiteness.

Inflection of the Scottish Gaelic lexeme for "dog", which is cù for singular, chù for dual with the number dà ("two"), and coin for plural

Languages that seldom make use of inflection, such as English, are said to be analytic.

Map of the pre-Roman Iron Age in Northern Europe culture(s) associated with the Proto-Germanic language, ca 500–50 BCE. The area south of Scandinavia is the Jastorf culture.

Dutch language

18 links

West Germanic language spoken by about 25 million people as a first language and 5 million people as a second language, constituting most of the population of the Netherlands (where it is the only official language countrywide) and about 60% of the population of Belgium (as one of three official languages).

West Germanic language spoken by about 25 million people as a first language and 5 million people as a second language, constituting most of the population of the Netherlands (where it is the only official language countrywide) and about 60% of the population of Belgium (as one of three official languages).

Map of the pre-Roman Iron Age in Northern Europe culture(s) associated with the Proto-Germanic language, ca 500–50 BCE. The area south of Scandinavia is the Jastorf culture.
Area in which Old Dutch was spoken
The Utrecht baptismal vow
Title page of the Statenvertaling (1637) reads: Biblia ... Uyt de Oorspronckelijcke talen in onse Neder-landtsche tale getrouwelijck over-geset. (English: From the Original languages into our Dutch language faithfully translated.
The location of Suriname in South America
The Dutch Caribbean at both ends of the Lesser Antilles, lining the Caribbean Sea
Standard Dutch used in a 1916 ad in South Africa before Afrikaans replaced Dutch for use in media
The distribution of Afrikaans across South Africa: proportion of the population speaking Afrikaans at home
The 27-letter compound hemelwaterinfiltratiegebied (rainwater infiltration area) on a traffic sign in Zwolle, Netherlands
Dutch uses the digraph IJ as a single letter and it can be seen in several variations. Here, a marking saying ("line/route" + "bus"; the tram lane also serves as bus road).
The distribution of the primary Germanic languages in Europe in around AD 1:
North Germanic
North Sea Germanic, or Ingvaeonic
Weser-Rhine Germanic, or Istvaeonic
Elbe Germanic, or Irminonic
East Germanic
Lighter-colored areas denote areas of either mixed settlement, such as between East-Germanic and Balto-Slavic peoples, or possible settlement, such as the Istvaeones within the Roman Empire or the Ingvaenes in Northern Denmark.

It is the third most widely spoken Germanic language, after its close relatives English and German.

Latin

25 links

Classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages.

Classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages.

Latin is classified as extinct according to the criteria of the UNESCO Atlas of the World's Languages in Danger. There are no living native speakers of this language.
The linguistic landscape of Central Italy at the beginning of Roman expansion
The Lapis Niger, probably the oldest extant Latin inscription, from Rome, c. 600 BC during the semi-legendary Roman Kingdom
The Latin Malmesbury Bible from 1407
Most 15th-century printed books (incunabula) were in Latin, with the vernacular languages playing only a secondary role.
The signs at Wallsend Metro station are in English and Latin, as a tribute to Wallsend's role as one of the outposts of the Roman Empire, as the eastern end of Hadrian's Wall (hence the name) at Segedunum.
The polyglot European Union has adopted Latin names in the logos of some of its institutions for the sake of linguistic compromise, an "ecumenical nationalism" common to most of the continent and as a sign of the continent's heritage (such as the EU Council: Consilium).
Julius Caesar's Commentarii de Bello Gallico is one of the most famous classical Latin texts of the Golden Age of Latin. The unvarnished, journalistic style of this patrician general has long been taught as a model of the urbane Latin officially spoken and written in the floruit of the Roman Republic.
A multivolume Latin dictionary in the University of Graz Library in Austria.
Latin and Ancient Greek at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, 2014.
The Duenos Inscription, from the 6th century BC, is one of the earliest known Old Latin texts. It was found on the Quirinal Hill in Rome.
A modern Latin text written in the Old Roman Cursive inspired by the Vindolanda tablets, the oldest surviving handwritten documents in Britain. The word Romani ('Romans') is at bottom left.

Latin has also greatly influenced the English language and historically contributed many words to the English lexicon after the Christianization of Anglo-Saxons and the Norman conquest.

Map indicating places where the language is called castellano (in red) or español (in blue)

Spanish language

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Romance language of the Indo-European language family that evolved from colloquial spoken Latin in the Iberian Peninsula of Europe.

Romance language of the Indo-European language family that evolved from colloquial spoken Latin in the Iberian Peninsula of Europe.

Map indicating places where the language is called castellano (in red) or español (in blue)
The Visigothic Cartularies of Valpuesta, written in a late form of Latin, were declared in 2010 by the Royal Spanish Academy as the record of the earliest words written in Castilian, predating those of the Glosas Emilianenses.
Chronological map showing linguistic evolution in southwest Europe
Antonio de Nebrija, author of Gramática de la lengua castellana, the first grammar of a modern European language.
Percentage of the U.S. population aged 5 and over who speaks Spanish at home in 2019, by states.
Spanish language signage in Malabo, capital city of Equatorial Guinea.
Early flag of the Filipino revolutionaries ("Long live the Philippine Republic!!!"). The first two constitutions were written in Spanish.
Announcement in Spanish on Easter Island, welcoming visitors to Rapa Nui National Park
Miguel de Cervantes, considered by many the greatest author of Spanish literature, and author of Don Quixote, widely considered the first modern European novel.
Spanish vowel chart, from
A world map attempting to identify the main dialects of Spanish.
An examination of the dominance and stress of the voseo feature in Hispanic America. Data generated as illustrated by the Association of Spanish Language Academies. The darker the area, the stronger its dominance.
The Rashi script, originally used to print Judaeo-Spanish.
An original letter in Haketia, written in 1832.
Arms of the Royal Spanish Academy
The Royal Spanish Academy Headquarters in Madrid, Spain.
Countries members of the ASALE.
Cervantes Institute headquarters, Madrid
Geographical distribution of the Spanish language
Official or co-official language
1,000,000+
100,000+
20,000+
Percentage of people who self reportedly know enough Spanish to hold a conversation, in the EU, 2005
Native country
More than 8.99%
Between 4% and 8.99%
Between 1% and 3,99%
Less than 1%

It is the world's second-most spoken native language after Mandarin Chinese; the world's fourth-most spoken language overall after English, Mandarin Chinese, and Hindustani (Hindi-Urdu); and the world's most widely spoken Romance language.

Germanic languages and main dialect groups

Germanic languages

15 links

The Germanic languages are a branch of the Indo-European language family spoken natively by a population of about 515 million people mainly in Europe, North America, Oceania and Southern Africa.

The Germanic languages are a branch of the Indo-European language family spoken natively by a population of about 515 million people mainly in Europe, North America, Oceania and Southern Africa.

Germanic languages and main dialect groups
Germanic - Romance language border: • Early Middle Ages • Early Twentieth Century
The approximate extent of Germanic languages in the early 10th century:
Old West Norse
Old East Norse
Old Gutnish
Old English (West Germanic)
Continental West Germanic languages (Old Frisian, Old Saxon, Old Dutch, Old High German).
Crimean Gothic (East Germanic)

The most widely spoken Germanic language, English, is also the world's most widely spoken language with an estimated 2 billion speakers.

Franz Bopp was a pioneer in the field of comparative linguistic studies.

Indo-European languages

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The Indo-European languages are a language family native to the overwhelming majority of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and the northern Indian subcontinent.

The Indo-European languages are a language family native to the overwhelming majority of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and the northern Indian subcontinent.

Franz Bopp was a pioneer in the field of comparative linguistic studies.
Indo-European family tree in order of first attestation
Indo-European language family tree based on "Ancestry-constrained phylogenetic analysis of Indo-European languages" by Chang et al
Scheme of Indo-European language dispersals from c. 4000 to 1000 BCE according to the widely held Kurgan hypothesis. – Center: Steppe cultures 1 (black): Anatolian languages (archaic PIE) 2 (black): Afanasievo culture (early PIE) 3 (black) Yamnaya culture expansion (Pontic-Caspian steppe, Danube Valley) (late PIE) 4A (black): Western Corded Ware 4B-C (blue & dark blue): Bell Beaker; adopted by Indo-European speakers 5A-B (red): Eastern Corded ware 5C (red): Sintashta (proto-Indo-Iranian) 6 (magenta): Andronovo 7A (purple): Indo-Aryans (Mittani) 7B (purple): Indo-Aryans (India) [NN] (dark yellow): proto-Balto-Slavic 8 (grey): Greek 9 (yellow):Iranians – [not drawn]: Armenian, expanding from western steppe
Some significant isoglosses in Indo-European daughter languages at around 500 BC.
Blue: centum languages
Red: satem languages
Orange: languages with augment
Green: languages with PIE *-tt- > -ss-
Tan: languages with PIE *-tt- > -st-
Pink: languages with instrumental, dative and ablative plural endings (and some others) in *-m- rather than *-bh-
Countries where Indo-European language family is majority native
Countries where Indo-European language family is official but not majority native
Countries where Indo-European language family is not official

Some European languages of this family, English, French, Portuguese, Russian, Dutch, and Spanish, have expanded through colonialism in the modern period and are now spoken across several continents.

The varieties of the continental West Germanic dialect continuum around 1900.  ):

West Germanic languages

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The West Germanic languages constitute the largest of the three branches of the Germanic family of languages (the others being the North Germanic and the extinct East Germanic languages).

The West Germanic languages constitute the largest of the three branches of the Germanic family of languages (the others being the North Germanic and the extinct East Germanic languages).

The varieties of the continental West Germanic dialect continuum around 1900.  ):
Grouping of the main Germanic languages, including historical dialects, according to Friedrich Maurer.
(Pre-)Old English an other West Germanic languages around 580 CE
The approximate extent of the continental West Germanic languages in the early 10th century: Old Dutch
Old High German
Old Frisian
Old Saxon
Line marking the boundaries of the continental West Germanic dialect continuum.

The West Germanic branch is classically subdivided into three branches: Ingvaeonic, which includes English and Frisian, Istvaeonic, which includes Dutch and its close relatives, and Irminonic, which includes German and its close relatives and variants.

Middle English

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The dialects of Middle English c. 1300
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Middle English (abbreviated to ME ) was a form of the English language spoken after the Norman conquest (1066) until the late 15th century.