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GEOGRAPHICAL SPREAD OF THE ENGLISH SPEAKING WORLD

CONTENTS

1. Geographical spread of the English speaking world . ..2

2. Variations of accent and dialects in English...4

3. Professional spread of the English language . . .... 6

4. English poetry: Shakespeare, Byron, J.Donne,

Wordsworth, Milton, Eliot, R.Burns, Browning. . . .11

5. History: Old English and Middle English periods . . .14

6. W.Shakespeare in English literature.... ..20

7. King Jame's translation of the Holy Bebie ...25

8. Modern English period................... 26

9. The English theatre. The School for scandal by R.B.Sheridan ............................................................. ...27

10. English classics.

a) Jane Austen Horthanger Abbey......... 31

b)Charles Dickens The Tale of Two Cities..33

 

11.Mark Twain Ton Sawyen.............. 35

12.Oscar Wilde The Importance of Being Earnest...37

13.Comic classic: Jerome K.Jerome Three Men in a Boat. . 43

14.English of the 20th century............................. ..45

GEOGRAPHICAL SPREAD OF THE ENGLISH SPEAKING WORLD

Over 360 million people speak English as their mother tongue. Although English is numerically second to Mandarin Chinese, which can claim some 600 million native speakers, no one would seriously propose learning Chinese as a practical world language. In fact the Chinese themselves are now busy implementing plans to learn English on a large scale. Not only would Chinese be too difficult, but its 600 million speakers are confined to one relatively small area, whereas English speakers, thanks to the British Empire, are to be found on every continent and in every corner of the globe.

To a European, the English speaking world probably means little beyond the UnitedStates of America and England, but when a European says "England" he most likely means the United Kingdom, which, of course, is composed of four different English speaking countries: Wales, Scotland, Ulster (also known as Northern Ireland) and England. With a bit more thought a European will remember to include Eire, the Republic of Ireland, Australia, Canada, South Africa and New Zealand, perhaps. But these are only 10 of the 45countries, which consider English their first or official or natural native language. In addition there are 19 other countries for which English is the practical or educated first language - countries like Guyana, India and the Sudan.

Most of the important African states are English speaking by tradition and by choice using English to unify the country and serve as the principal means of communication between diverse tribes. Kenya, Nigeria, Zambia, Ghana, Malawi, Tanzania just a few of the black African countries which depend on English for their law courts and parliaments and day-to-day business dealings. In Asia, the English language serves the same purpose for the entire Indian sub-continent as well as for the smaller outposts of the Empire now the Commonwealth such as Fiji, Tonga, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and Ceylon or rather Sri Lanka, as it is now called. The Caribbean Sea is sprinkled with islands in the sun Bermuda, Barbados, Trinidad, Jamaica, Dominica, the Bahamas where English is spoken by everyone, black, white or brown.

VARIATIONS OF ACCENT AND DIALECTS IN ENGLISH

English contains many variations of accent and even dialect but unlike Italian or German, the dialects are rarely different enough to make comprehension impossible. True, a London Cockney would have a very difficult time in a conversation with a steel worker in Glasgow, and a Carolina cotton picker might find it difficult to understand and to be understood by a sheep farmer from Australia, but a businessman from, say, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA would have few problems dealing with a businessman from Dublin, Ireland, or Sydney, Australia, Auckland, New Zealand, Liverpool in England, Johannesburg, South Africa or Kingston, Jamaica. A reasonably educated Standard English allows comprehension and communication all over the English speaking world. Can you guess where these native English speakers come from?

1. Big breakfasts have always been something the English speaking world has had in common - what is known on the Continent as "an English breakfast". This is also true where I come from. We have bacon and eggs as well as toasts and marmalade and tea or coffee, and often breakfast cereals like porridge and Cornflakes.

(English speaking South Africa)

 

2. On the Continent people are usually more formal shaking hands a lot and calling each other Doctor, Engineer, Professor and all that. The English speaking world tends to be more informal. We don't shake hands so much we don't use academic titles - they're considered pretentious - and we prefer first names not only for friends and colleagues, but often even the boss is Mike or John and not Mr. so-and-so.

(Republic of Ireland)

 

3. Where I come from, everybody understands and speaks English, but the older people also speak patois. I never learned patois - I grew up only speaking English.

(West Indian from Dominica)

 

4. Ever since Lord Sandwich put meat between two pieces of bread so that he could eat while playing cards, the sandwich has been the basic lunch for most English speaking countries. At least it's certainly true where I come from.

(East Coast of the USA)

 

5. Political and social stability is something you find in nearly all the English speaking countries. We all share a strong tradition of democratic government and a respect for the law. You don't find dictators, revolutionaries or many extremists of any kind, as a rule. Perhaps that's why there are no English words for "fascism", "coup d'etet", "Putsch" or "junta". These are foreign concepts, so we have to use the foreign words. (Australia)

KINGS JAMESS TRANSLATION OF THE HOLY BIBLE

A second great influence on the English language occurred in 1611, five years before Shakespeare died. This was the publication of the King Jamess translation of the Holy Bible. If Shakespeare gave the language its greatest poetry, the Bible gave it much of its greatest prose. This version of the Bible was not written by one man but by a team or committee of some 47 scholars. We know very little about them except that they were certainly men of literary genius, and we have their finished work as a proof. Heres how they began:

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

And the earth was waste and void; and darkness was

Upon the face of the deep: and the spirit of God moved

Upon the face of the waters.

And God said, let there be light: and there was light.

And God saw the light, that it was good: and God

Divided the light from the darkness.

And God called the light Day, and the darkness he

Called Night. And there was evening and there was

Morning, one day.

(Genesis I)

It is impossible to estimate the importance or effect of the King James Bible on the English language. Listen to the simplicity but the power of the prose in these lines from St. Pauls first epistle to the Corinthians:

When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I become a man, I put away childish things.

For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

And now abideth faith, hope, charity; these three; but the greatest of these is charity.

 

MODERN ENGLISH PERIOD

What we call Modern English comes from the period immediately following the publication of the Bible and Shakespeares death. We generally consider 1640 to be the beginning of modern English, and the language has changed remarkably little ever since. De the 17th century the language has discarded its grammatical complexities: no more declensions and a minimum use of the subjunctive.

Grammatical gender had disappeared and English become the only European language to employ natural gender that is, using feminine, masculine pronouns for things masculine, and the neuter it for everything else. How much simplier than in, say, German where a table is he, a postage stamp is she and a girl is it. Then too, English gave up its second person singular what on the Continent is known as the familiar form expressed by tu in Italian, Spanish and French and du in German. In English this was thou and its use became restricted to poetry, church and a few provincial dialects, Instead, English, as you well known, now simply uses the plural form you for everyone and for all. In place of the grammatical complexities of Old English, the language became more exact in other ways.

Modern English has a fixed system of word order more exact than exists in any other language and a highly sophisticated use of the tenses which causes so much difficulty for a foreign student.

SCANDAL BY R.B.SHERIDAN

 

The late 17th century saw a magnificent revival of the English theatre after the gloomy days of the Puritans who had closed them and opposed any form of entertainment. This period, which we call The Restoration, gave the English speaking theatre some of its most amusing and stylish comedies, which reflected the new permissiveness of the age. This was perhaps best described by Sir John Vanbrugh who, along with William Congreve, was one of the Finest Restoration comedy writers. He wrote: No man worth having is true to this wife or can be true to this wife, or ever was, or ever will be so, and marital infidelity was the theme of many of wittiest plays of the age. It was also Vanbrugh who gave the language the still common phrase much of a muchness to describe two things with little difference between them:

Do you prefer the comedies of Vanbrugh or Congreve?

Oh, theyre much of muchness.

 

*** *** ***

 

The 18th century was an age of manners, style and elegance, not only in clothes and the way fashionable Londoners lived, but in the way they spoke English. Richard Brinsley Sheridan born 25 years after Vanbrughs death, also wrote comedies about the infidelities and intrigues of London society much in the same vein as Congreve and Vanbrugh before him, but the dialogue was now more arch, more stylized and the humour perhaps more malicious, which no doubt reflected the style of speech and wit of the time. Many of his plays, like those of Congreve and Vanbrugh are as funny today as they were 200 years ago. Here is a short scene from one of his most famous comedies The school for scandal, first produced at the Drury Lane Theatre, London, in 1775, when the United States of America was still and English colony.

Sir Peter Teazle, an elderly bachelor, has recently married a young girl from the country and introduced her into fashionable circles in London society. She has adapted herself to rather quicker and with a great deal more extravagance than Sir Peter had intended.

Sir Peter: Lady Teazle, Lady Teazle, Ill not bear it.

Lady Teazle: Sir Peter, Sir Peter, you may bear it or not as you please; but I ought to have my own way in everything.

Whats more, I will too. What! Though I was educated in the country, I know very well that women of fashion in London are accountable to nobody after they are married.

Sir Peter: very well, maam, very well so a husband is to have no influence, no authority?

Lady Teazle: Authority! No, to be sure if you wanted authority over me, and not married me: I am sure you were old enough.

Sir Peter: Old enough! aye, there it is! Very well, Lady Teazle, though my wife may be made unhappy by your temper, Ill not be ruined by your extravagance!

Lady Teazle: My extravagance! Im sure Im not more extravagant then a woman of fashion should be.

Sir Peter: No, no, madam, you shall throw away no more sums on such unmeaning luxury. Zounds! To spend as much to furnish your dressing room with flowers in winter as would suffice to turn the Pantheon into a greenhouse, and give a fete champetre at Christmas.

Lady Teazle: Lord, sir Peter, am I to blame, because flowers are dear in cold weather? You should find fault with the climate, and not with me. For my

 

 

part, I should think you would like to have your wife thought a woman of taste.

Sir Peter: Zounds! Madam, you had no taste when you married me.

Lady Teazle: Thats very true, indeed, Sir Peter, and having married you, I am sure I should never pretend to having taste again.

Sir Peter: If you had been born to this I shouldnt wonder at your talking thus; but you forget what your situation was when I married you.

Lady Teazle: No, no, I dont. It was a very disagreeable one or I should never have married you.

Sir Peter: Ye, yes, madam, you were in a somewhat humbler style the daughter of a plain country squire. Recollect, Lady Teazle, when I saw you first.

Lady Teazle: Oh, yes. I remember it very well, and a curious life I led! My daily occupation to inspect the dairy, superintend the poultry, make extracts from the family recipe book, and comb my Aunt Deborahs lap-dog.

Sir Peter: Ye, yes, madam. It was so indeed.

Lady Teazle: And then, you know, my evening amusements. To draw patterns for furrles, which I had not the materials to make up, to play cards with the curate, to read a sermon to my aunt, or to strum my father to sleep on a spinet after a fox chase.

Sir Peter: I am glad you have so good memory. Yes, madam, those were the recreations I took you from; but now you must have your coach and three powered footmen before your chair. And in summer, a pair of white horses to draw you to Kensington Gardens. No recollection, I suppose when you were content to ride behind the butler on a coach horse?

Lady Teazle: No I swear I never did that; I deny the butler and the coach horse.

 

Sir Peter : This, madam, was your situation; and what have I done for you? I have made you a woman of fashion, of fortune, of rank in short, I Have made you my wife.

Lady Teazle: Well then and there is but one thing more you can make me to add to the obligation.

Sir Peter : And what, pray, may that be, madam?

Lady Teazle: Your widow!

 

 

MARK TWAIN TOM SAWYER

This was also the period of America's greatest novelists -Hawthorne, Melville and Samuel Clemens, better known as Mark Twain. In this scene from his famous novel Tom Sawyer, Tom's Aunt Polly has just given him, as a punishment, the task of painting, or rather whitewashing, the garden fence on a day when all the other children in the village of St.Petersburg, Missouri, are free and at play.

Tom appeared on the sidewalk with a bucket of whitewash and a long handled brush. He surveyed the fence and the gladness went out of nature, and a deep melancholy settled down upon his spirit. He began to think about the fun he had planned for this day and his sorrows multiplied... thirty yards of broad fence four-foot high! Sighing, he dipped his brush in the paint and passed it along the topmost plank.

(Tom sings)

Thirty yards of broad fence four foot high, Life is just a hollow and a sorrowful sigh, Four foot of broad fence thirty yards long, Life, for me, will always be an off-key song. Just then Jim, the Negro boy who worked for Aunt Polly, came skipping out with a bucket to fetch water from the town pump.

Say Jim, said Tom, I'll fetch the water for you if you'll whitewash some of this fence.

Jim shook his head and said Can't, Master Tom, I got to go and got this water. Jim, I'll give you a marble if you'll do it.

Tom considered - was about to consent - but he altered his mind.

Ho not I reckon that wouldn't do. Aunt Polly's very particular about this fence - right here on the street, you know. I reckon there isn't one boy in a thousand, maybe two thousand that can do it the way it's got to be done. Oh come on, let me try, only just a little. I'll be just as careful as you will. Say r I'll give you my apple - all of it. Tom gave up the brush with reluctance in his face, but alacrity in his heart, and while Ben sweated in the sun, the retired artist sat in the shade close by enjoying his apple and planning the slaughter of more innocents. There was no lack of material: boys happened along every little while they came to jeer, but remained to whitewash and Tom collected payment from each. (The village boys sing a round" as they paint)

Thirty yards of broad fence four foot high, Painting is a pleasure, makes the time fly by, Pour foot of broad fence thirty yards to go, Life can all be leisure if you make it so.

If he hadn't run out of whitewash, Tom would have bank-ruped every boy in the village.

Tom said to himself that it was not such a hollow world after all. He had discovered a great law of human action, without knowing it - namely that in order to make a man or boy covet a thing, it is only necessary to make the thing difficult to attain, and that work consists of whatever a body is obliged to do and that play consists of whatever a body is not obliged to do. This would help him understand why constructing artificial flowers is work, while climbing Mont Blanc is only amusement.

 

OSCAR WILDE THE IMPORTANCE

OF BEING EARNEST

Certainly one of the greatest comedies of the English language was written by an Irishman, Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wilde. But like his countryman George Bernard Shaw, he drew his inspiration not from Ireland but from English society. From The Importance of Being Earnest here is the famous tea party scene between two young ladies, Cecily and Gwendolen, who discover they are engaged to be married to the same young man. (Garden of the Manor House - July) (Enter Merriman, the butler)

Merriman: A Miss Fairfax has just called to see Mr Worthing. On very important business, Miss Fairfax states.

Cecily: Isn't Mr Worthing in his library?

Merriman: Mr Worthing went over in the direction of the Rectory some time ago.

Cecily: Pray ask the lady to come out here: Mr.Worthing is sure to be back soon. And you can bring tea.

Merriman: yes, Niss. (goes out)

Cecily: Miss Fairfax! I suppose one of the many good elderly women who are associated with Uncle Jack in some of his philanthropic work in London. I don't quite like women who are interested in philanthropic work. I think it is so forward of them.

(Enter Merriman)

Merriman: Miss Fairfax.

(Enter Gwendolen. Exit Merriman)

Cecilys: Pray let me introduce myself to you My name is Cecily Cardew.

Gwendolen: Cecily Cardew? What a very sweet name! Something tells me that we are going to be great friends. I like you already more than I can say. My first impression of people is never wrong.

Cecily: How nice of you to like me so much after we have known each other such a comparatively short time. Pray sit down.

Gwendolen: I may call you Cecily may I not? Cecil's With pleasure!

Gwendolen: And you will always call me Gwendolen, won't you? Cecil's If you wish.

Gwendolen: Then that is all quite settled, is it not? Cecil's I hope so. Gwendolen! Perhaps this might be a favourable opportunity for my mentioning who I am. My father is Lord Bracknell. You have never heard of papa, I suppose? Cecil's I don't think so.

Gwendolen: Outside the family circle papa, I am glad to say is entirely unknown. I think that is quite as it should be. The home seems to me to be the proper sphere for the man. And certainly once a man begins to neglect his domestic duties he becomes painfully effeminate, does he not? And I don't like that. It makes men so very attractive. Cecily, mamma, whose views on education are remarkably strict, has brought me up to be extremely shortsighted, it is part of her system, so do you mind my looking at you through my glasses?

Cecily: Oh! not at all, Gwendolen. I am very fond of being looked at.

Gwendolen: (after examining Cecily carefully through a lorgnette) you are here on a short visit, I suppose.

Cecily: Oh no! I live here.

Gwendolen: Really? Your mother, no doubt, or some female relative of advanced years resides here also?

Cecily: Oh no! I have no mother, nor, in fact, any relations.

Gwendolen: Indeed?

Cecily: My dear guardian, with the assistance of Miss Prism, has the arduous task of looking after me.

Gwendolen: Your guardian?

Cecily: Yes, I am Mr Worthing' s ward.

Gwendolen: Oh! It is strange he never mentioned to me that he had a ward. How secretive of him! He grows more interesting hourly. I am not sure, however, that the news inspires me with feelings of unmixed delight. I am very fond of you, Cecily; I have liked you ever since I met you! But I am bound to state that now I know that you are Mr Worthing's ward, I cannot help expressing a wish you were - well, just a little older than you seem to be - and not quite so very alluring in appearance. In fact, if I may speak candidly.

Cecily: Pray do! I think whenever one has anything unpleasant to say one should always be quite candid.

Gwendolen: Well, to speak with perfect candour, Cecily, I wish that you were fully forty-two, and more than usually plain for your age. Ernest has a strong upright nature. He is the very soul of truth and honour. Disloyalty would be as impossible to him as deception. But even men of the noblest possible

moral character are extremely susceptible to the influence of the physical charms of others. Modern, no less than Ancient History, supplies us with many most painful examples of what I refer to. If it were not so, indeed, History would be quite unreadable.

Cecily: I beg your pardon, Gwendolen, did you say Ernest?

Gwendolen: Yes.

Cecily: Oh, but it is not Mr Ernest Worthing who is my guardian. It is his brother - his elder brother.

Gwendolen: Ernest never mentioned to me that he had a brother.

Cecily: I am sorry to say they have not been on good terms for a long time.

Gwendolen: Ah! That accounts for it. And now that I think of it I have never heard any man mention his brother. The subject seems distasteful to most men. Cecily, you have lifted a load from my mind. I was growing almost anxious. It would have been terrible if any cloud had come across a friendship like ours, would it not? Of course you are quite, quite sure that it is not Mr Ernest Worthing who is your guardian?

Cecily: Quite sure. In fact, I am going to be his.

Gwendolen: I beg your pardon?

Cecily: Dearest Gwendolen, there is no reason why I should sake a secret of it to you. Our little country newspaper is sure to chronicle the fact next week. Mr Ernest Worthing and I are engaged to be married.

Gwendolen: My darling Cecily, I think there must be some slight error. Mr Ernest Worthing is engaged to me. The announcement will appear in the Morning Post on Saturday at the latest.

Cecily: I am afraid you must be under some misconception. Ernest proposed to me exactly ten minutes ago. (shows diary) It's here in my diary.

Gwendolen: (examines diary through her lorgnette carefully) It is very curious, for he asked me to be his wife yesterday afternoon at 5.30, If you would care to verify the incident, pray do so. (produces diary of her own) I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train. I am sorry, dear Cecily, if this is any disappointment to you, but I am afraid I have the prior claim.

Cecily: It would distress me more than I can tell you, dear

Gwendolen: if it caused you any mental or physical anguish, but I feel bound to point out that since Ernest proposed to you he clearly has changed his mind.

Gwendolen: If he poor fellow has been entrapped into any foolish promise I shall consider it my duty to rescue him at once, and with a firm hand.

Cecily: Whatever unfortunate entanglement my dear boy may have got into, I will never reproach him with it after we are married.

Gwendolen: Do you allude to me, Miss Cardew, as an entanglement? You are presumptuous. On an occasion of this kind it becomes more than a moral duty to speak one's mind. It becomes a pleasure.

Cecily: Do you suggest, Miss Fairfax, that I entrapped Ernest into an engagement? How dare you? This is no time for wearing the shallow mask of manners. When I see a spade I call it a spade.

Gwendolen: I am glad to say that I have never seen a spade. It is obvious that our social spheres have been widely different.

(Enter Merriman, carrying tea on a tray)

Merriman: Shall I lay the tray here as usual, Miss?

Cecily: Yes, as usual.

Gwendolen: Are there many interesting walks in the vicinity, Miss Cardew?

Cecily: Oh, yes! a great many. Prom the top of one of the hills quite close one can see five countries.

Gwendolen: Five countries! I don't think I should like that; I hate crowds.

Cecily: I suppose that is why you live in town. May I offer you some tea, Miss Fairfax?

Gwendolen: Thank you. Detestable girl! But I require tea!

Cecily: Sugar?

Gwendolen: No, thank you. Sugar is not fashionable any more. (Cecily looks angrily at her, takes up the tongs and puts four lumps of sugar into the cup)

Cecily: Cake or bread and butter?

Gwendolen: Bread and butter, please. Cake is rarely seen in the best houses nowadays.

Cecily: (cuts a very large slice of cake and puts it on the tray)

Hand that to Miss Fairfax.

(Merriman does so. Gwendolen drinks the tea and makes a grimace, puts down cup at once, reaches out her hand to the bread and butter, looks at it, and finds it is cake)

Gwendolen: You filled my tea with lumps of sugar, and though I asked most distinctly for bread and butter, you have given me cake. I am known for the gentleness of my disposition, and the extraordinary sweetness of my nature, but I warm you, Miss Cardew, you may go too far.

Cecily: To save my poor, innocent, trusting boy from the machination of any other girl! There are no lengths to which I would not go.

Gwendolen: From the moment I saw you I distrusted you. I felt that you were false and deceitful. I am never deceived in such matters. My first impressions of people are invariably right.

Cecily: It seems to me, Miss Fairfax that I am trespassing on your valuable time. No doubt you have many other calls of a similar character to make in the neighborhood.

ENGLISH OF THE 20th CENTURY

What is English in the 20th century? Like all English institutions, the language is constantly changing, but it never really changes. The words dearest to our heart, like mother, father, and brother, sister, and son, daughter and wife are all Saxon and go back to the very beginnings of the language. And yet we are inventing or taking in new words every minute, when the occasion needs additional vocabulary. Unlike most Continental languages, an academy or an authority that tries to keep the language pure has never controlled English. The strength of English is that it is not, nor has ever been pure. We have accepted some 32,000 foreign words into English, which we call loan words, and nobody objects -words like vendetta and caricature from Italian, words like cargo and mosquito from Spanish, kindergarten and kitsch from German, rendezvous, chef and cuisine from French, bungalow and jungle from Hindu, typhoon from Chinese, and even from Japanese, the word tycoon meaning someone with an industrial empire - Axel Springer and Gianni Agnelli are good European examples of tycoons.

Technology breeds new words like rabbits breed rabbits... the space age gave us count down, blast off and splash down. New cults and fashions also produce new vocabularies. The nipples gave us tune in, turn on and drop out. American slang like O.K. and V.I.P. - very important person - is common all over the world. It was the British journalists who first named the Boeing 747 the Jumbo Jet and now it's practically universal. With the help of television films and books, new words in English travel almost instantly all over the globe, whether they originate in Britain, the U.S.A. or other parts of the English Speaking World.

But with all the innovation, with all the slang, dialects, accents and abuses, English remains English the world over. It allows a Japanese to

 

speak to an Italian, an Arab to do business with a Scandinavian, a Spanish boy to chat up an Australian girl; a Nigerian to talk politics with an Indian, a German to sell Volkswagens to Americans or buy rubber from Malaysians. The language is the English speaking world's greatest mass product -1,200 years in development, and today its most prestigious export.

 

 

 

CONTENTS

1. Geographical spread of the English speaking world . ..2

2. Variations of accent and dialects in English...4

3. Professional spread of the English language . . .... 6

4. English poetry: Shakespeare, Byron, J.Donne,

Wordsworth, Milton, Eliot, R.Burns, Browning. . . .11

5. History: Old English and Middle English periods . . .14

6. W.Shakespeare in English literature.... ..20

7. King Jame's translation of the Holy Bebie ...25

8. Modern English period................... 26

9. The English theatre. The School for scandal by R.B.Sheridan ............................................................. ...27

10. English classics.

a) Jane Austen Horthanger Abbey......... 31

b)Charles Dickens The Tale of Two Cities..33

 

11.Mark Twain Ton Sawyen.............. 35

12.Oscar Wilde The Importance of Being Earnest...37

13.Comic classic: Jerome K.Jerome Three Men in a Boat. . 43

14.English of the 20th century............................. ..45

GEOGRAPHICAL SPREAD OF THE ENGLISH SPEAKING WORLD

Over 360 million people speak English as their mother tongue. Although English is numerically second to Mandarin Chinese, which can claim some 600 million native speakers, no one would seriously propose learning Chinese as a practical world language. In fact the Chinese themselves are now busy implementing plans to learn English on a large scale. Not only would Chinese be too difficult, but its 600 million speakers are confined to one relatively small area, whereas English speakers, thanks to the British Empire, are to be found on every continent and in every corner of the globe.

To a European, the English speaking world probably means little beyond the UnitedStates of America and England, but when a European says "England" he most likely means the United Kingdom, which, of course, is composed of four different English speaking countries: Wales, Scotland, Ulster (also known as Northern Ireland) and England. With a bit more thought a European will remember to include Eire, the Republic of Ireland, Australia, Canada, South Africa and New Zealand, perhaps. But these are only 10 of the 45countries, which consider English their first or official or natural native language. In addition there are 19 other countries for which English is the practical or educated first language - countries like Guyana, India and the Sudan.

Most of the important African states are English speaking by tradition and by choice using English to unify the country and serve as the principal means of communication between diverse tribes. Kenya, Nigeria, Zambia, Ghana, Malawi, Tanzania just a few of the black African countries which depend on English for their law courts and parliaments and day-to-day business dealings. In Asia, the English language serves the same purpose for the entire Indian sub-continent as well as for the smaller outposts of the Empire now the Commonwealth such as Fiji, Tonga, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and Ceylon or rather Sri Lanka, as it is now called. The Caribbean Sea is sprinkled with islands in the sun Bermuda, Barbados, Trinidad, Jamaica, Dominica, the Bahamas where English is spoken by everyone, black, white or brown.

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