Origins of English PieChart

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Origins of English PieChart

Message  gerardM le Mar 7 Jan - 17:25

Hi everyone,

You already heard:
- English language comes from German
- there are many words coming from French
- there are many words coming from Latin
- the British Islands were invaded lots of times and especially -in addition to the peoples noted above- by Scandinavians.

But how is that? Are there any figures to show the percentages of these influences?


You're Lucky Laughing



Here is the expected pie-chart!



This chart belongs to Wikipedia -> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Origins_of_English_PieChart.svg Isn't it exciting?

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gerardM

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Re: Origins of English PieChart

Message  gerardM le Mar 7 Jan - 17:27

Hi again,

Here are a few words i recently read:
English is a member of the Germanic group (blue) within the Indo-European family. But thanks to 1066, William of Normandy, and all that, about 75% of the modern English vocabulary comes from French and Latin (ie the Romance languages, in orange) rather than Germanic sources. As a result, English (a Germanic language) and French (a Romance language) are actually closer to each other in lexical terms than Romanian (a Romance language) and French.

So why is English still considered a Germanic language? Two reasons. First, the most frequently used 80% of English words come from Germanic sources, not Latinate sources. Those famous Anglo-Saxon monosyllables live on! Second, the syntax of English, although much simplified from its Old English origins, remains recognizably Germanic. The Norman conquest added French vocabulary to the language, and through pidginization it arguably stripped out some Germanic grammar, but it did not ADD French grammar.
(source: http://elms.wordpress.com/2008/03/04/lexical-distance-among-languages-of-europe/comment-page-1/#comments )

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Please feel free to point out big mistakes in my messages in a foreign language. Thanks to your remarks, I'll be able to improve my level.
PS: Pls note that I chose American English for my vocabulary, grammar, spelling, culture, etc.  :-)
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gerardM

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