Queen Elizabeth I (1533 - 1603) is a polyglot who speaks ~10 languages; English, French, Flemish, Latin, Greek, Italian, Spanish, Welsh, Cornish, Scottish and Irish. At the age of 12, she translated religious works by her stepmother in English to French, Latin, and Italian. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eli…
The equivalent of the English-language idiom "comparing apples and oranges" in Serbian is "grandmothers and toads"; in Romanian it's "the grandmother and the machine gun" or "the cow and the longjohns"; and the equivalent Danish idiom is "What is highest, the Round Tower or a thunderclap?" en.wikipedia.org/wiki/App…
India has more English speakers who speak it either as their first language or second language than the US,UK and Canada combined. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
The English language term "smoking" was coined in the late 18th century; before then the practice was known as "drinking smoke". en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smo…
Some languages like English and Mandarin Chinese are spoken slower than others, like Spanish and Japanese, with 20-30% fewer syllabes spoken per second. However, in "slower" languages, more information is conveyed in fewer words, but same amount of information is communicated per unit of time. transfluent.com/en/2015/0…
After comparing more than 2000 languages, scientists noticed that languages with more speakers are usually simpler than smaller languages. For instance, most English nouns can be turned into plurals by simply adding -s, whereas the German system is notoriously irregular. phys.org/news/2019-07-siz…
Today I learned of KJ Yesudas, an Indian Musician and Singer who has recorded over 50,000 songs in 10 different languages including Arabic, Latin, Russian, and English, despite only speaking his own regional language of Malayalam. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/K._…
Today I Learned That Arabic uses numbers as a substitute for sounds we don’t have in English in their chat language iwillteachyoualanguage.co…
The word "tiptop", which means something like "awesome" or "very good" was once popular in American English in the 1950s, but has since heavily declined in use. However, it has survived in the country of Luxembourg, where it is fully used in everyday language. luxtimes.lu/archives/2834…
The American English expression "Okay" (or O.K.) is nearly identical to the expression "Okeh" from the Amerindian Choctaw-Chickasaw language, which first appeared in print a decade earlier and means "it is so and not otherwise." en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OK#…
The longest word in the English language with only one vowel is "Strengths" guinnessworldrecords.com/…
The concept of the "double negative" does not exist in every language and in many languages, including Portuguese, French, Russian, Greek, Spanish, Old English and Italian, the use of multiple negatives serves to intensify rather than cancel out a previous negative. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dou…
Despite the fact that Irish citizens are required to learn Irish in school, the second most widely spoken language in Ireland (after English) is Polish. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rep…
Scientists discovered a cypress tree in North Carolina that is at least 2,624 years old, which means the tree was alive for centuries before the advent of Christianity, the Roman Empire, and the English language. charlotteobserver.com/new…
Korean popstar Rap Monster does the majority of BTS’ English-language interviews because he’s the only member fluent in the language. He’s self-taught and has said that he learned while watching Friends billboard.com/articles/co…
"fart" is one of the oldest words in the English language, and can be traced back to its Proto-Indo-European roots through its cognates in other European languages and Sanskrit en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Far…
The letter J is the only letter not on the periodic table of elements. The reasoning behind this is most likely due to the letter J being the 4th least frequently used word in English, as well as not being used at all in the Latin language. generalknowledgefacts.com…
In Hollywood in 1931, the English-language film "Dracula" was filmed by day, and by night, the Spanish-language film "DrΓ‘cula" was filmed using the same set. The director of DrΓ‘cula based his shots on what he felt worked in the "day" film - and critics praised DrΓ‘cula far more than Dracula miamiherald.com/entertain…
Today I learned about the novel Gadsby, which is an example of a lipogram. The entire book contains no instances of the letter E, the most common letter in the English language. Mostly unnoticed at the time (1939), the book by Ernest Vincent Wright has become a collector’s item for fans of constrained writing. abebooks.com/books/gadsby…
There are more people who have learned English as a second language than there are native speakers. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eng…
American Sign Language and British Sign Language are not mutually intelligible. While English speakers can understand each other across the Anglosphere, deaf people from different English speaking countries are unable to understand each other. accreditedlanguage.com/in…
After English, Latin is the most common language spoken by American Presidents, with 12 fluent presidents. Next is Greek with 7, French with 6, and German with 4. Also atleast one American president has been fluent in Dutch, Italian, Spanish, and Hebrew. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
Today I learned about Yola, a language that developed from Middle English and was spoken in Wexford (Ireland). It went extinct in the 19th century and contained elements from Norman French, Welsh and Flemish. youtube.com/watch?v=RFl9p…
Queen Victoria's first language was German, and she required two tutors to somehow reduce her German accent in English. Her children all spoke German too and they switched between English and German within the family. goethe.de/ins/gb/en/kul/f…
Although the US has no official language 32 States and 4 territories do. It's English en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tem…
In 1923 Illinois officially passed legislation replacing English with 'American' as their official language, making it the only state in the Union where people legally 'speak American' languagepolicy.net/archiv…
There are more people who speak the English as a second language than native English-speakers around the world stgeorges.co.uk/blog/lear…
Floccinaucinihilipilification is the longest non-technical word in the English language. It refers to the habit of dismissing things as useless en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Flo…
There are ten different indigenous languages still spoken today in the British Isles; English, Scots, Welsh, Gaelic, Irish, Cornish, Manx, Angloromani, Shelta and British Sign Language theguardian.com/education…
"Happy Birthday To You" was created by a kindergarten teacher Patty Hill and her sister Mildred in 1912. It is the most recognized song in the English language. By one estimate, the song is the highest-earning single song in history. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hap…
There are only 23 words that date back 15,000 years and are considered the oldest known words in the English language. They are: thou, I, not, that, we, to give, who, this, what, man/male, ye, old, mother, to hear, hand, fire, to pull, black, to flow, bark, ashes, to spit, and worm. itworld.com/article/27099…
When US-born giant panda twins arrived in China, they struggled with local food and language. Mei Lun & Mei Huan were confused by "have you eaten up" in Chinese but responded to English "come here". They preferred "Western fast food" biscuits instead of local "wowotou" (steamed corn bread). straitstimes.com/asia/eas…
Newspeak from "Nineteen Eighty-Four" is based on an actual language proposal - Basic English, a proposed easy-to-learn version of English with only 850 core words. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New…
English and Norwegian share not only the same syntax, but also have very similar pronunciation / sounds and even shared words (although usually with different meanings). English is classified as western Germanic but it fits all the characteristics of a northern Germanic language. partner.sciencenorway.no/…
The 10 most spoken languages in South America are Spanish, Portuguese, Quechua, English, Guarani, Aymara, German, Italian, Arabic, and Chinese (if you combine all the different Chinese dialects) babbel.com/en/magazine/la…
Shakespeare’s scripts contain over 2200 never-before-seen wordsβ€”a diverse collection of loan-words from foreign languages, compound words from existing English terms, nouns turned into verbs, and creatively applied prefixesβ€”many of which have entered into everyday language. mentalfloss.com/article/4…
The last US President who was fluent in a language other than English is Franklin D. Roosevelt, who spoke good French and German. Roosevelt died in office in 1945 mashable.com/2015/02/02/u…
Four times more people speak English as a second language (roughly two billion) than as a native one (approximately 350 million). newyorker.com/magazine/20…
English is the most efficient language realclearscience.com/blog…
English language accents are divided into Rhotic and non Rhotic accents. Rhotic accents such as Irish and American accents pronounce the letter R in words and non-rhotic accents such as English and Australian accents do not. The majority of England developed non-rhoticity around the 1700's. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rho…
Armenian cucumber is not actually a cucumber. It's also known as "snake melon" in English, and is a muskmelon like cantaloupe. It's called "qithaa'" in Classical Arabic (mentioned in the Qu'ran re:the Promised Land), "Arab/Palestinian cucumber" in Hebrew, and "fakoos" in both languages. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arm…
There are up to 7,000 different languages spoken around the world today. More than half of the world's languages have no written form. It is estimated that 75% of the world’s population does not speak English. kaplaninternational.com/b…
All astronauts going to the International Space Station are required to learn Russian, which can take up to 1100 class hours for English language speakers space.com/40864-internati…
The English language is the only language (of the most spoken languages in the world) that doesn’t have a regulator body/institution. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
The American distributor of the 1976 Korean movie 아메리카 방문객 ("Visitor of America") added a plot-unrelated scene of Bruce Lee rising from his grave and named the English-language release "Bruce Lee Fights Back from the Grave". en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bru…
There is a Canadian TV anchor who translates all the English news into Inuktitut live on air. Igalaaq is the only Inuktitut supper hour TV program in the whole country where unilingual Inuktitut speakers have this one chance, for 30 minutes, to see someone speaking their language cbc.ca/radio/unreserved/g…
That the West Country Dialect is the closest form of English to the original Saxon language en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wes…
Chinese Pidgin English. Used for 200 years in Chinese ports, the language mix Chinese syntax and English words creating a grammar like: "Chinese man very great rogue truly, but have fashion, no can help". Some expressions were introduced back into English: "Long time no see"; "No money no talk". en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chi…
The languages with the highest number of words are Korean, Finnish, Swedish, Icelandic, English, Italian, Japanese, Lithuanian, Dutch, and Tamil. Korean has ~300,000 more words than Finnish, more than double the number of words in English, and more than triple the number of words in German en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
There is an extinct language called Mbabaram which evolved separately from English. The word for "dog" in Mbabaram happens to also be "dog" by complete coincidence en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mba…

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