The English language is spoken as a first language by several sovereign states, including the UK, Australia, United States of America, Ireland, Canada and many more. But what do we actually know about the this popular tongue? It’s time to find out…
1. The Letter B
When you write out the word of every number (one, two, three, four…), you don’t write the letter B until you reach one billion.
2. 1 Billion People
Speaking of one billion, that’s how many people on Earth speak English. That’s 1 in every 7 people on the planet!
3. The Language of the Skies
All pilots, regardless of their country of origin or first language, have to identify themselves in English on international flights. It is therefore the official language of the skies.
4. The Longest Word Without Vowels
Can you think of what might be the longest common English word without vowels? Well, you’d be right if you thought it was “rhythms”! It’s not that long, really, is it?
5. Here Come the Bride
The word “bride” is an old proto-Germanic word. However, it’s not as flattering as some people may believe, as it actually means “to cook”. So the next time you see a blushing bride, you’ll now know it’s because she’s spent so long in a hot kitchen!
6. Death Contract
Have you signed on the dotted line for a death contract? If you have a mortgage you have, as the word “mortgage” is derived from the French word that means “death contract”.
7. The Classroom
Here is a thinker for you: the word “schoolmaster” is an anagram of “the classroom”. Bet you didn’t know that!
8. New Words
On average, one new word is created in the English language every two hours – so the dictionary grows by approximately 4,000 words per year!
9. English Origins
The English language is a combination of Old High German, Anglo-Norman and Old Norse. The modern English language we recognise started in the 14th Century.
10. The Oldest Word
The oldest word in the English language is “I”, closely followed by “we”, “two” and “three”, which are thousands of years old.
Looking for more interesting facts from The List Love? Check out 10 Crazy Planet Earth Facts.