The Mother Tongue By Bill Brryson Summary

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In The Mother Tongue, author Bill Bryson asks a variety of questions about English. These questions range from wondering about how we can be overwhelmed and underwhelmed but not whelmed with to why colonel is pronounced with an r when one does not exist in the word.The overall purpose of Bill Bryson’s book is to determine why English is the way it is today. Bill Bryson dives into the history and evolution of English through the appeals of ethos, pathos, and logos, the best example starting with the list on page 71. Bill Bryson uses pathos in his tone and ethos to provide information in order to seem credible.Bryson’s comedic tone is used because the book would be boring without it and some of the items brought up are quite ridiculous. The discussion of how English became English tends to make many groans but add humor to the discussion and …show more content…
Pippa Passes by Robert Browning is also an example of logos. At the time of the 1800’s, English was still being refined. Dictionaries were still being worked on and the accidently thinking one word meant another definition was not as big of a deal. Bryson chose this word and poem in hopes to show that English has changed since 1841 and stills continue to change today. The reason page 71 and on was chosen was because Bryson uses logos to list the reasons English has changed and elaborates them. These reasons are elaborated further in the book, but page 71 is where they are summarized. Bryson lists the major reasons in this list which are: Words are created by error, are adopted from other languages, changed through doing nothing, by changing the word, and just by being created. Bryson also brings up that English has come from many languages because of adoption. English mostly adopted from Latin. Bryson brings up many examples, one of them being that the words entirety and integrity comes from the latin word

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