English

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English

Post by Archived Topic » Sun Oct 10, 2004 7:56 am

I tried very hard to locate the origin of 'English,' but to no avail. Other people have acknowledged the same. So, I axed myself; 'why is it so difficult finding the origin, when it's such a ubiquitous language?'

I think I came up with a pretty good reason, and here it is.

You see, I'm from Rhode Island, and I speak nine different languages fluently.


And they're all English.

Take it easy on me, will ya?

Al of Rhode Island

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English

Post by Archived Reply » Sun Oct 10, 2004 8:10 am

Either you tried less hard than you pretend, or your efforts were misdirected. Look in M-W on-line and you have the etymology in about 3 seconds flat.
I also remember seeing a very similar posting, not so long ago, with the same (very old and overworn) 'joke' and the same signature. This repetition is pointless, and annoys more serious users of this site.
Please axe yourself harder... although as a chicken(including a Rhode Island Red) can run about for some time with their head axed off, maybe you already did?
Simple Simon - Belgium
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English

Post by Archived Reply » Sun Oct 10, 2004 8:25 am

It's not true what you say Simple Simon. What you're suggesting I do, has been done many a time over.
There is no proof to the origin of the basic English language. Just because it's annoying to you, why is it a joke?
The reason I said "I speak nine different languages ... and they are all English," is because I believe it is the character of the language. You being a self appointed, self adoring scholar, or perhaps of pedantic learning should know this, or acknowledge that you do not know, which should be considered knowledge, and the only attitude that does not close the door to truth.
In your response, you are acknowledging that it is not true that you do not know, and apparently you attribute this to your wisdom. This is not the same.

There are many that come to this Website, with the sole intent to wound, or engage in the development of jocose blaspheme. Why do you search for my shortcomings, rather than your own?

By the way, show me a piece (to you, an article) that was written in the basic English language; like, no Latin, German, French, Italian and a HOST of other ethnic words used.

If you respond, keep in mind, I do not have a well tutored mind, and I am a simple minded thinker, except I do understand that the combination of simple and complex things is necessary ---- easy things to understand and difficult things to understand.

Take it easy on me Mr. Oz. You too Erik. I'm not a nut yet, although a squirrel just bit me.

Al

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Post by Archived Reply » Sun Oct 10, 2004 8:39 am

An tiny old book in the university library on the history of the language said that 'English' was the name and language of a tribe in Denmark. (Sorry it has been decades and I do not remember the name of the book. It was not printed in the US.)
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Post by Archived Reply » Sun Oct 10, 2004 8:53 am

Now I understand your question.
Your use of inverted commas ('English') led me to believe you were looking for the origin of the word, wheras you are looking for the origin of the language.
So where do you get the figure nine from?
I would counter that your quest is ultimately impossible, albeit a fascinating journey upon which to embark. There is no such thing as 'pure' English (from which current English might have evolved), any more than pure French, pure Latin, or any other 'pure' language. All languages have evolved by adoption of components of other older languages, so even if you could go back to a Neanderthal language it would still probably not be 'pure'. What you are looking at is just one strand in the history of language itself - which ultimately merges into archeology and evolutionary theory.
Any attempt to pin down a single origin for 'English' can be nothing more than a hypothesis, open to debate. You will notice that most etymology rarely seeks beyond Latin and Greek - which are basically the reliable historical time horizon provided by authenticated written documents. Going beyond this is often very much hypothetical.
More alarming is the thought that trying to pin down a single origin is somewhat akin to finding an original or 'pure' owner, or race of individuals who spoke the original 'pure' English. Doesn't such a 'pure' origin concept remind you of a more dangerous 'pure' race pretence seventy years ago?
Why not just lean back and enjoy the incredible richness and variety of what we have now?
Simple Simon
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Post by Archived Reply » Sun Oct 10, 2004 9:08 am

Exactly ... Mr. Simple Simon. I like the way you said that.

Al

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