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The English language
Group Germanic (with German, Danish, Dutch etc.), West Germanic (with Frisian, Scots etc.)
Geography The second widest language in the world, spoken by over 400 million people on all continents. English is the language for international communications and one of the five official languages of the UN.
History The modern English language is a direct descendant of Old English, a tingue of Germanic tribes who invaded Britain in the 5th century. The language acquired its present day form in the 16th century. Later it spread to North America, Africa, Asia and Australia together with British migrants and became the official language of the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and 15 countries of Africa. The literature English language is based on the London dialect.
Phonetics English vowels are peculiar for the Indo-European family, especially [] in cat, [a] in cut, and diphthongs like in fear. In general, there is no strict border between diphthongs and long monophthongs. Dental fricative sounds [] in this and [] in thin are also unique among Germanic tongues.
Nominal Morphology An analytical language with the word order and prepositions playing a very important part in the language. The noun is not declined, the possessive marker -'s is gradully going out of use. The plural number is formed with the ending -s, -es, and this is the only trace of inflection in the language. 
Verbal Morphology All verb tenses, voices and aspects are formed by complex constructions with the help of auxiliary verbs, participles and infinitives. The conjugation disappeared in the Middle English period, leaving the only formant -s in the 2nd person singular (sings, does). The conversion of word order is a frequent feature. 
Lexicon About 70% of the English vocabulary was borrowed from Latin, French, Scandinavian. As a result of colonial expansion, notably in North America but also in other areas of the world, many new words entered the English language. From the indigenous peoples of North America, the words raccoon and wigwam were borrowed; from Peru, llama and quinine; from the West Indies, barbecue and cannibal. In addition, thousands of scientific terms were developed to denote new concepts, discoveries, and inventions. Many of these terms, such as neutron, penicillin, and supersonic, were formed from Greek and Latin roots; others were borrowed from modern languages, as with blitzkrieg from German and sputnik from Russian.
Writing Latin alphabet
Close Contacts The closest relative is the Frisian language. Close contacts with French and German.
Sample For this I know, not onelie by reading of bookes in my studie, but also be experience of life, abrode in the world that those, which be commonlie the wisest, the best learned, and best man also, when they be olde, were neuer commonlie the quickest of witte, when they were yonge. The causes why, amongest other, which be many, that moue me thus to thinke, be these fewe, which I will rechen. Quicke wittes commonlie, be apte to take, vnapte to keepe: soone hote and desirous of this and that: as colde and sone wery of the same againe: more quicke to enter spedelie, than able to pearse farre: euen like ouer sharpe tooles, whose edges be verie soone turned. 

(Roger Ascham. The Scholemaster, 1571)

Picture Tower of London
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