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Chapter 6. Language. Language. Intro A. Languages Where are English Speakers Distributed? A. Origin and diffusion of English 1. Intro 2. English colonies 3. Origin of English in England. Language. B. Dialects of English 1. Dialects in England

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chapter 6



  • Intro

A. Languages

  • Where are English Speakers Distributed?

A. Origin and diffusion of English

1. Intro

2. English colonies

3. Origin of English in England


B. Dialects of English

1. Dialects in England

2. Differences between British &

American English

3. Dialects in the United States

  • Dialects in the United States
    • Settlement in the United States
      • NE.
      • Southeastern
      • Mid-Atlantic

b. Current Dialect

differences in the east

D. Pronunciation Differences

1. Diffusion

english speaking countries
English Speaking Countries

Fig. 5-1: English is an official language in 50 countries, including some in which it is not the most widely spoken language. It is also used and understood in many others.

invasions of england 5 th 11 th centuries
Invasions of England5th - 11th centuries

Fig. 5-2: The groups that brought what became English to England included Jutes, Angles, Saxons, and Vikings. The Normans later brought French vocabulary to English.

old middle english dialects
Old & Middle English Dialects

Fig. 5-3: The main dialect regions of Old English before the Norman invasion persisted to some extent in the Middle English dialects through the 1400s.

dialects in the eastern u s
Dialects in the Eastern U.S.

Fig. 5-4: Hans Kurath divided the eastern U.S. into three dialect regions, whose distribution is similar to that of house types (Fig. 4-9).

Why is English Related to other Languages?

A. Indo-European Branches

1. Germanic branch

2. Indo-Iranian branch

a. Indic (Eastern)

b. Iranian (Western)

3. Balto-Slavic branch

a. East Slavic and Baltic

b. West and South Slavic

4. Romance branch

a. Origin and Diffusion

b. Romance Language Dialects

c. Distinguishing between dialects

and languages

B. Origin and diffusion of Indo-European

1. Kurgan and Anatolian theories

indo european language family
Indo-European Language Family

Fig. 5-5: The main branches of the Indo-European language family include Germanic, Romance, Balto-Slavic, and Indo-Iranian.

russian sign
Russian Sign

Russian is an Indo-European language written in the Cyrillic alphabet, originally brought to Russia by Greek missionaries

germanic branch of indo european
Germanic Branch of Indo-European

Fig. 5-6: The Germanic branch today is divided into North and West Germanic groups. English is in the West Germanic group.

south asian languages language families
South Asian Languages & Language Families

Fig. 5-7: Indo-European is the largest of four main language families in South Asia. The country of India has 18 official languages.

romance branch of indo european
Romance Branch of Indo-European

Fig. 5-8: The Romance branch includes three of the world’s 12 most widely spoken languages (Spanish, French, and Portuguese), as well as a number of smaller languages and dialects.

signs in barcelona spain
Signs in Barcelona, Spain

Signs in Barcelona are written both in Catalán (top) and Spanish (bottom).

port au prince haiti
Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Haitian Creole and French are both official languages in Haiti, although English is also used.

kurgan theory of indo european origin
Kurgan Theory of Indo-European Origin

Fig. 5-9: In the Kurgan theory, Proto-Indo-European diffused from the Kurgan hearth north of the Caspian Sea, beginning about 7000 years ago.

anatolian hearth theory of indo european origin
Anatolian Hearth Theory of Indo-European Origin

Fig. 5-10: In the Anatolian hearth theory, Indo-European originated in Turkey before the Kurgans and diffused through agricultural expansion.

IV. Where are other language Families Distributed?

A. Classification of languages

B. Distribution of language families

1. Sino-Tibetan language family

2. Other East and Southeast Asian

language families

C. Languages of the Middle East and Central


1. Afro-Asiatic language family

2. Altaic and Uralic language families

D. African language families

1. Intro

2. Niger-Congo

3. Nilo- Saharan

4. Khoisan

language families of the world
Language Families of the World

Fig. 5-11: Distribution of the world’s main language families. Languages with more than 50 million speakers are named.

major language families percentage of world population
Major Language FamiliesPercentage of World Population

Fig. 5-11a: The percentage of world population speaking each of the main language families. Indo-European and Sino-Tibetan together represent almost 75% of the world’s people.

language family trees
Language Family Trees

Fig. 5-12: Family trees and estimated numbers of speakers for the main world language families.

chinese ideograms
Chinese Ideograms

Fig. 5-13: Chinese language ideograms mostly represent concepts rather than sounds. The two basic characters at the top can be built into more complex words.

language families of africa
Language Families of Africa

Fig. 5-14: The 1000 or more languages of Africa are divided among five main language families, including Austronesian languages in Madagascar.

languages of nigeria
Languages of Nigeria

Fig. 5-15: More than 200 languages are spoken in Nigeria, the largest country in Africa (by population). English, considered neutral, is the official language.

V. Why do people preserve local languages?

A. Preserving language diversity

1. Intro

2. Hebrew: reviving extinct languages

3. Celtic: preserving endangered languages

4. Multilingual states

5. Isolated languages

B. Global dominance of English

1. English as a lingua franca

2. Diffusion to other languages

ireland road signs
Ireland Road Signs

Road signs in Ireland are written in both English and Gaelic (Goidelic).

language divisions in belgium
Language Divisions in Belgium

Fig. 5-16: There has been much tension in Belgium between Flemings, who live in the north and speak Flemish, a Dutch dialect, and Walloons, who live in the south and speak French.

bookstore in brussels belgium
Bookstore in Brussels, Belgium

The name of the bookstore is printed in both French (top) and Flemish (bottom).

jerusalem street sign
Jerusalem Street sign

A street in Jerusalem was re-named New York after Sept. 11, 2001. The street name is shown in Hebrew, Arabic, and English

language areas in switzerland
Language Areas in Switzerland

Fig. 5-17: Switzerland remains peaceful with four official languages and a decentralized government structure.

french english boundary in canada
French-English Boundary in Canada

Fig. 5-18: Although Canada is bilingual, French speakers are concentrated in the province of Quebec, where 80% of the population speaks French.

online population 1996 2005
Online Population, 1996 - 2005

Fig. 5-1.1: English is still the largest language on the internet, but there has been rapid growth in many others, especially Chinese.

e commerce languages 2000 2004
E-Commerce Languages 2000 & 2004

Fig 5-1.2: English and English-speaking countries still dominate e-commerce, but other languages are growing rapidly.