Language And The English Language Essay

1571 Words Nov 22nd, 2016 7 Pages
The Story of English in One Hundred Words is exactly what one would think with such a title – just with a little bit more of an explanation behind each word. David Crystal, a British linguist, has written and coauthored many books that expound upon the English language. He is most known for his two encyclopedias: The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Language and The Cambridge Encyclopedia of the English Language. This specific book, however, is an attempt to help readers see both the trees and the woods of the English language. These 100 words were chosen personally by Crystal, and would likely be different if chosen by someone else (Preface). Crystal uses 100 words to cover a span of thousands of years: starting with the 5th century and working into the 21st century. Naturally, as he brings words into different centuries he doesn 't discourage the likelihood that the words weren 't being used prior to his selected "date", but more that there was a higher usage in the date that he placed the word. In fact, he brings this up quite often, which in turn helps him establish where the word evolved and where it went – if it ended up surviving the century at all. Apart from just his 100 chosen words, he also shows the evolution of other words that came to be in the same period. Focusing mainly on his selected word, he shows the locational origins of certain words, how the words could have either been "loaned" into the language (such as skunk (pg 116)), mashed into the language (doable;…

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