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1. Some information about archaic term. Examples of archaic words.
2. Early changes in the Vocabulary American English.
3. The Survival of Archaic English in the American dialect.
Archaic words are those that belong to an earlier period and are no longer in common use (eg, aforesaid, beforementioned, hereinafter, and heretofore).Archaic language may also include old-fashioned grammar rules. These are rules that are mostly redundant.Avoiding archaic words helps to keep the words we use familiar to our readers. It also contributes to a professional, helpful, and engaging tone (rather than an old-fashioned, pretentious tone).Some writers often use archaic words to appear clever or show off their “elegant” writing style. Sometimes writers use archaic words out of a misplaced sense of tradition or convention. But plain language is less about the writer and more about the readers. It’s about writing clearly so that readers can easily understand the message.Apart from being outdated, today the meanings of archaic words can be unclear or imprecise.
For that reason, you should avoid Latin phrases by using the modern English equivalent (eg, use “in good faith” rather than “bona fide”).In rare cases when drafting legislation, you may need to retain a term that is no longer in common use with ordinary readers. This may be because the term has a technical common law meaning that is difficult to translate precisely (eg, non est factum). In addition, you may need to keep using a term for consistency. For example, if you are amending an Act about “chattels”, you may not be able to refer to “goods”. But consider whether it is feasible to maintain consistency by replacing all of the archaic terms (eg, by replacing all the references to “chattels” with “goods”).
You should remove an archaic term or replace it with a modern plain language equivalent if possible. In some cases, where an archaic word is superfluous, you can delete it. The following examples demonstrate how this can be done without changing the meaning of the sentence:
No food whatsoever is permitted in the car. No food is permitted in the car.1
In this example, the archaic term adds nothing to the meaning of the sentence.
The words “respectively”, “namely”, and “altogether” are other examples of words that are often superfluous because they add nothing to the meaning of a sentence.
All property vests in the relict.All property vests in the surviving spouse or partner.
The mortgage is a charge over all goods, chattels, and personal property, and also over all such lands, messuages, tenements, hereditaments, houses, and buildings, whatsoever held or vested in the mortgagor.The mortgage is a charge over all of the mortgagor’s property.
Before it became what it is today American English has gone through a long process of change which was the consequence of historical, geographical, linguistic and socio- political factors. Indeed it was due to these factors that English came into existence in the American continent, yet this language which had its roots in the old continent changed in so many ways that it caused the birth of what came to be known as American English. Despite of the fact that colonists in America came from different countries, the British presence was so huge that English became the lingua franca of the new continent. However, the fact that America was a zone of contact definitely had an impact and a great influence on the way the English language is spoken there. In addition to that, after a few years, a clear consciousness started rising amongst the American people to make the English language peculiar to them and different from how it was used in Britain. Yet, with the vast lands and the huge number of people, any talk about American English can only include language variation.
American English came to existence as a direct consequence of the colonization of the new world by those who were referred to as “the colonists”. Most, if not all, of the first settlers came from Britain as they were escaping religious persecution. But after the first waves of British settlers, people started coming from all around Europe, America was seen as a melting pot where different people from different countries, cultures, religious backgrounds and different languages came to live together in the same space. But still, the rapid expansion of English inhabitants made the English language since the very first days very important. For example New York which is one of the most emblematic cities of America was first a Dutch colony; it had the name of New Amsterdam and the whole area between Cape Cod and Delaware Bay was claimed by the Netherlands and called: New Netherland. New York only gained the name it has today in 1664 when Peter Stuyvesant, the director general of the colony of New Netherland, surrendered to the English without bloodshed. Another example if the city of Philadelphia, founded in 1682 by William Penn, it grew so quickly and became the largest but also the most cosmopolitan city in America. German presence for example was so important that they had a whole town named after them. It is indeed this contact between different people of different nationalities that gave the English language in America its sense of uniqueness.
The mingling of different people in America gave birth in an astonishing manner to a national consciousness that would be a key element in the future development of the American English as a standard homogenous language. Not a long time passed before the colonists started to become conscious of their own language, and it is mainly for political reasons and in order to differentiate and distance themselves from Britain, a country that most of them fled, that people started talking about the uniformity of the American language. For example, the American English and against what many believe is much more conservative than British English because it kept some archaic features that no longer existed in Britain by the time. Examples of archaic features retained in American English that were lost in British English are so many. For instance, the retention of the [ r ] sound whereas British English lacks it before consonants and in final position: e.g. “bar”, “color”, “march”, “quarter”, etc. Another example might be the use of [æ] instead of [a] in words like “fast”, “ask”, “path”, “class”, “half”, “can't”.
Yet another example of archaisms in American English is the pronunciation of a flat short [o] in words like “not”, “hot”, “top”, “lot”, while the British use a more rounded “o” sound. In tandem with this, Americans coined new words to refer to some new concepts, objects, animals, etc. that did not exist back in the old continent. Some new words were taken from the Native American languages, for example: moose, raccoon, skunk, etc.
Indeed, the debate around national consciousness did not mean that American English was spoken the same way by all Americans, dialects were and still are a very important facet of the American English that are celebrated rather than despised by most Americans. Indeed, the promotion of the American English would have never been the same without the person of Noah Webster (1758-1843). He was amongst the first people to ferociously advocate the very need for making the English language personal to Americans. His different dictionaries and publications focused on the spelling as well as pronunciation of words which is a very important characteristic in the American language. For example, Webster published in 1806 his first dictionary entitled: A Compendious Dictionary of the English Language, and a year later another dictionary that took him 18 years to complete that he called An American Dictionary of the English Language. But it was only until 1828 that he published the first edition of his most important dictionary entitled the Webster’s American Dictionary of the English language. Indeed the fact that with Webster and many others there was finally an existing standard model of the American language did not mean that American English was spoken the same way all over the country. Variations in American English exist indeed and the most important sign of that might only be the huge number of dialects spoken in American. The New England dialect for example is one of the most important ones in the U.S.
As speakers of language, we all have certain deep-seated
notions concerning the nature of language. Like all such
fundamental beliefs, these are often wrong, though they may
contain a germ of truth. For example, as literate beings, we tend to
equate language with writing. But there are significant differences,
not only between oral sounds and written symbols, but also
between spoken and written syntax or vocabulary (Laurel and
In numbers of speakers as well as in its uses for international
communication and in other less quantifiable measures, English is
on the most important languages of the world. Spoken by more
than 380 million people in the United Kingdom, the United States,
and the former British Empire, it is the largest of the Western
languages. English, however, is not the most widely used native
language in the world. Chinese, in its eight spoken varieties, is
known to 1.3 billion people in China alone. Some of the European
languages are comparable to English in reflecting the forces of
history, especially regarding European expansion since the
sixteenth century. Spanish, next in size to English, is spoken by
about 330 million people, Portuguese by 180 million, Russian by 175
million, Germany by 110 million, French by 80 million native
speakers (and a large number of second-language speakers), Italian
by 65 million (Albert C. Baugh & Thomas Cable, 2002)
Although English is important for international language,
most non-native speakers of English find it difficult in learning
English, and on the other hand some of them may confuse because
English has many varieties such as American English (AmE), British
English (BrE), Australian English. the big differences are about
English America and English Britain in which they have some
differences about vocabulary, grammar also pronunciation. A
beginner will shock if they think so much about these differences.
The question is, why English has many varieties? Here is the
answer, (David Crystal, 2003) explained that the historical account
traces the movement of English around the world, beginning with
the pioneering voyages to the Americas, Asia, and the Antipodes. It
was an expansion which continued with the nineteenth-century
colonial developments in Africa and South Pacific, and which took a
significant further step when it was adopted in the mid twentieth
century as an official or semi-official language by many newly
independent states. English is now represented in very continent,
and in island of three major oceans – Atlantic (St. Helena), Indian
(Seychelles) and Pacific (in many islands, such as Fiji and Hawaii).
It is this spread of representation which makes the application of
the label ‘global language’ a reality.
Most of topics that always discussed in the English lesson are
about the differences between AmE and BrE, (John Algeo, 2006)
said that the most obvious difference between BrE and AmE is in
the “tune” of the language, that is, the intonation that accompanies
sentences. When a Briton or an American talks, he identifies
himself primarily by the tunes of his respective varieties,
pronunciation and grammar.
English has many contents inside such as grammar,
vocabulary, pronunciation, and etc. Grammar is a set of rules of
language that arrange the order of it than it will be a perfect
sentence, as said by Richard and Schmidt that grammar is a
description of the structure of language and how language units
such as words and phrases are formed into sentences (Richard and2
Schmidt in Muh. Saeful Effendi, at al., 2017). The next definition,
grammar is a set of rules or principles of the working of a language,
its system structure (Brinton in Muh. Saeful Effendi, at al., 2017).
Then the definition of vocabulary is little bit complicated because it
has many definitions, however little bit complicated (Schmitt in
Iman Alizadeh, 2016) argued that vocabulary as the knowledge of
words and word meanings. Or someone else may define vocabulary
as a list of words arranged in alphabetical order with their
definitions. A word, in most linguistic analyses, is described as a set
of properties, or features, each word is the combination of its
meaning, register, association, collocation grammatical behavior,
written form(spelling), spoken form (pronunciation) and frequency.
And we can find lots of definitions about the other subjects on
many books or articles.
In accordance with the statements above we know that the
spread of English was so wide and English also has many
differences. the researcher therefore will focus about two
differences between AmE and BrE, and the researcher will focus on
two types of differences those are vocabulary and grammar between
AmE and BrE. When the people who start to learn English, they will
need some vocabularies and they will need some literatures such as
grammar to mastery the English. The purpose of this study is to
support previous study about several differences between AmE and
BrE and why it happened.
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