Even if you are a Professional in English and demonstrate top class in the use of vocabulary, we have found out something to surprise you: little-known things about the language of Albion, about which you had no idea or thought. Fill in the gaps in the biography of this language after reading this article.
The expression "curiosity killed the cat " is right for us: anglomanes and just those who are fond of English. In the time when an average person is drinking a rightly deserved cup of tea watching a soap opera on TV, we surf the Internet looking for the necessary meaning, a new way to learn more words, an educational film, a quiz, and some special website to improve literacy; or even at all, quietly in the night chatter on the no one can understand topics like a participle or (even worse) diphthongs. And in a bustle, we sometimes are totally blind to the fascinating things that relate to the discussed language and everything that relates to it.
However, it is not a time to despair on this occasion because even among the anglomanes, there is always someone who is not too lazy to reveal the engrossing facts about the English language and share them with other people, so to say, many a little makes a mickle. It can be that some of them you heard somewhere already, but some of them can become for you something new and even strange.
- 1. Do you want to see the longest word of the discussed language? Then, behold it and try to remember just in case you are going to amaze someone with your outstanding knowledge. This word is “pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanokoniosis.” 45 letters and all just in one word! In fact, it hides a kind of illness, it is the name of the disease of the respiratory tract caused by the inhalation of volcanic dust and other small articles in the form of dust.
- 2. The second thing we would like to share with you relates to the biggest quantity of synonyms. That is, in theory, it is not obligatory to know all possible words as far as you can easily say another one with the same meaning.
- 3. Punctuation marks appeared in English only in the XV century.
4. The oldest word is town, and also the words:
- 5. Nobody ever thought about the fact that the word slave has a similar root with the word "the Slavs"? If yes, then you are not mistaken. Indeed, the slave is directly related to the Slavs: in ancient times the Germanic tribes sold representatives of the Slavic tribes into slavery to the Romans.
6. Most often in English, the letter E is used, and less common – Q. We mean, of course, how often this letter occurs in different words. Because if we talk about the popularity of Q in a modern speech, we involuntarily recall the level of IQ, which is mentioned in season and out of season.
Britain and American poets are lucky because they are not able to find a rhyme for only 4 words:
Even the dictionary of a million of words will not help here. Some amateur poets are trying to rhyme orange with courage, porridge, arranged, and other seemingly similar words in search of a good version. In fact, such a "rhyme" is far-fetched because either the stress does not match, or the stressed vowel is not "o", or there is no "n" sound before "j."
- 8. If you want to pull out your tongue, you can risk repeating the most difficult tongue-twister: "The sixth sick sheik's sixth sheep's sick." Coped?
- 9. As you may know, English words are inclined to have various meanings depending on a situation. The record holder is the word "set:" 44 basic meanings for the verb,
- 17 basic meanings for the noun;
- 7 basic meanings for the adjective;
- and a pile of different additional meanings.
Therefore, after seeing the word set, do not rush to argue that you really understand the meaning if just said phrase: maybe, it is not at all what you think.
- 10. And here is something that lovers of palindromes like (words that can be read equally from left to right and right to left): kayak, level, and racecar.
- 11. The symbol “&” was formerly in the English alphabet. Now, it is proudly called "ampersand" and is not considered a letter.
- 12. Changes in the discussed language are slow but real. And if the time machine was invented, then the native speaker of the English language would hardly understand what their compatriots spoke about 500 years ago or what they would say in 500 years.
- 13. The sentence "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog" is unique because all the letters of the English alphabet are found here.
- 14. There is a word that everyone would like in the game "Make as many words out from one as possible". And that is therein. It would seem that this is rather a short word, but, in fact, it is the only one that hides 10 other words, where you do not even need to change places of the letters:
the (definite article);
- 15. Almost every person is convinced that English is the most popular language in the world. Well, we are going to discredit this myth thoroughly! The Chinese (yes, you knew it!) takes the first place. The Spanish (there you are!) sits solemnly on the second place. And, logically, the English receives the honorable third place and a big deal of speakers, about 400 million. However, you should know that more than 700 million people study or use it as a second language; by the way, you are already included in this number.
Of course, this is not a full list of all the interesting things about the language discussed in this article. That is why you should not be shy in the comments, where you can write about your personal findings and please the busy anglomanes.