Friday, August 26, 2011

The Story of English

by Robert McCrum, William Cram and Robert MacNeil

This is an enjoyable survey of the English language from the mid 1980s. It starts with the birth of the language--how the events of the history of the people of Britain (especially all the invasions) served to create a unique branch of the Germanic languages. As the story progresses, the authors then show the modern results of these historical influences, not only in England, but also in all the places where the English people have settled and/or conquered. As this is a companion book to a television program, the book is amply illustrated and fairly easy to read. There are many points when I could visualize (auralize?) how the TV series must have presented the same information. It would be interesting to read/see an update, to see if there have been any noteworthy developments in the past 25 years.  

I'm keeping it on my shelf.
LibraryThing link


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