ENGLISH LANGUAGE THROUGH HISTORY

Old english

Old English language (Old English) is, in fact, the original English language spoken since mid-V by the end of XI century. The original English is quite different from the English language that is spoken today.

Old english

Here I will cite here an excerpt from the epic poem of Beowulf: Beowulf mathelode, bearn Ecgtheowes: „Ne sorga, snotor guma! Selre bith aeghwaem thaet he his freond wrece, thonne he fela murne. Ure aeghwylc sceal ende gebidan worolde lifes; wyrce se the mote domes aer deathe; thaet bith driht guman unlif gendum aefter selest.“ It is not entirely clear, is not it? :) This would look like a translation into modern English: Beowulf, son of Ecgtheow, spoke: „Wise sir, do not grieve. It is always better to avenge dear ones than to indulge in mourning. For every one of us, living in this world means waiting for our end. Let whoever can win glory before death. When a warrior is gone, that will be his best and only bulwark.“

Middle english

Once you are in the year 1066 the Normans conquered England, there is a great influence of the French language to English. This language was spoken from the XI to the end of the fifteenth century and is known as the Middle English language

Middle english

To see how the middle english language looked compared to today's modern, let me quote a short passage from Kanterberijskih story: Whan that Aprill, with his shoures soote The droghte of March hath perced to the roote And bathed every veyne in swich licour, Of which vertu engendred is the flour; Whan Zephirus eek with his sweete breeth Inspired hath in every holt and heeth The tendre croppes, and the yonge sonne Hath in the Ram his halfe cours yronne, And smale foweles maken melodye, That slepen al the nyght with open ye (So priketh hem Nature in hir corages); Thanne longen folk to goon on pilgrimages And palmeres for to seken straunge strondes To ferne halwes, kowthe in sondry londes; And specially from every shires ende Of Engelond, to Caunterbury they wende, The hooly blisful martir for to seke That hem hath holpen, whan that they were seeke. Translation into modern English would look like this: When in April the sweet showers fall And pierce the drought of March to the root, and all The veins are bathed in liquor of such power As brings about the engendering of the flower, When also Zephyrus with his sweet breath Exhales an air in every grove and heath Upon the tender shoots, and the young sun His half course in the sign of the Ram has run And the small fowl are making melody That sleep away the night with open eye, (So nature pricks them and their heart engages) Then folk long to go on pilgrimages, And palmers long to seek the stranger strands Of far off saints, hallowed in sundry lands, And specially from every shires’ end Of England, down to Canterbury they wend The holy blissful martyr, quick To give his help to them when they were sick.

Modern english

Modern English can be divided into two periods: -early (from 1500 to 1800) -and late (from the year 1800 - to present) British people realized the increasing number of contacts with other nations, which led to the fact that the English language to introduce new words from other languages​​. The early modern English language largely be understood until our time has not changed significantly.

Modern english

The greatest writer of all time William Shakespeare wrote on the early modern English. The following is an excerpt from Romeo and Juliet: Juliet: O Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo? Deny thy father and refuse thy name; Or if thou wilt not, be but sworn my love And I’ll no longer be a Capulet. Romeo: [Aside] Shall I hear more, or shall I speak at this? Juliet: ‘Tis but thy name that is my enemy: Thou art thyself, though not a Montague. What’s Montague? It is nor hand nor foot, Nor arm nor face, nor any other part Belonging to a man. O be some other name! What’s in a name? That which we call a rose By any other word would smell as sweet; So Romeo would, were he not Romeo call’d, Retain that dear perfection which he owes Without that title. Romeo, doff thy name, and for thy name, which is no part of thee, Take all myself. As you can see, the language that Shakespeare used is easy to understand.

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