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Has anyone come across “Anglish”? Anglish or Saxon is described as “...a form of English linguistic purism, which favours words of native (Germanic) origin over those of foreign (mainly Romance and Greek) origin.”

Does anybody have an opinion or thoughts on “Anglish”...

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Shouldn't that be "a of English, which words of over those of and"?

Since "form" is Latin, "linguistic" and "purism" are both Latin-Greek hybrids, "favor" is French, "native" is Latin, "origin" is Latin, and "foreign" and "mainly" are French.

More seriously: very loosely speaking, English has three levels of discourse: a colloquial level using words of Saxon origin, a sophisticated or poetic level using words of French origin, and a formal level using words of Latin origin. E.g. "wrong" (Saxon), "false" (French) and "incorrect" (Latin). But there is a lot of mixing between levels and etymology should always be the last consideration in choosing the proper word for any given place.

pmr July 15, 2010, 2:25am

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Actually "wrong" was borrowed from Old Norse.

I don't think there's such a thing as a "pure" language. Even Anglo-Saxon isn't pure. Anglo-Saxon is descended from Proto-Germanic, and many Proto-Germanic words are descended from Proto-Indo-European, but many aren't - they were presumably borrowed from other now extinct languages.

goofy July 15, 2010, 12:02pm

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When I read about "Anglish" I thought about the poverty of words without non-Germanic words. I don't know how pendantic these people are - they seem to be mostly in England. It could be as simple as picking the Anglo-Saxon word over another non-Anglo-Saxon word when possible. There are many English words that have fallen from common usage over the centuries. However, I can't see a return to Chaucerian English in the cards!

shaunc July 15, 2010, 5:40pm

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We ain't ever gonna go back to chaucer's English. But we CAN sway the current norm of English towards the common speech, and slowly, ever so slowly, beat out BS words like "consanguinuity" in favor of words like "samebloodedness" which even a 3-year-old can understand. All it takes is using simpler words when possible, avoiding "high words" even though they sound "grand". That's why I get mad at the KJV, so many latin and outdated english words... I don't say "carnal" i say "fleshly" and i don't "thou" i say "you".

afihai July 24, 2010, 12:24am

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"Does anybody have an opinion or thoughts on “Anglish”…"

Yes, it's a ridiculous idea.

"Samebloodedness"? Get a life.

JJMBallantyne July 25, 2010, 3:44pm

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"The Anglish Moot," a website devoted to Anglish, defines it as "a kind of English, but without those words which have been borrowed from other languages." The site describes the purpose of Anglish:

"The purpose of Anglish differs from person to person, but mostly it is to explore and experiment with the English language . . . By stripping away the layers of borrowed words, Anglish allows us to better appreciate that core and the role it plays in our language."

This sounds like an interesting academic exercise. The problem is that English has always had "borrowed words" in its lexicon. Nearly two hundred Latin borrowings—that we know of—were brought to England from the Continent by the Anglo-Saxons. Another 350 or so Latin words were added to Old English prior to the Norman Invasion. Other words found their way into Old English from Old Norse. Shall we discard these?

"The Anglish Moot," gives this reason for the existence of Anglish:

"English words taken from Latin, French, and Greek are made up of parts whose meanings are on the whole unknown or at least unclear to the English speaker."

Indeed. Do they include words like butter, cup, kitchen, mile, pepper, plant, pound and street, all of which are Latin-based, and all of which were brought by the Anglo-Saxons when they crossed the Channel? Quoth the Moot: "So extreme is this beclouding of so much of the English wordstock, that we get severely hard-to-make-out-the-meaning-of words like “inebriate”, completely incomprehensible to the English speaker from its wordbits, since it contains the wodbit ‘ebri’, from the latin ‘ebrius’, meaning drunk." (I have kept the spelling and punctuation intact.) Unless one is inebriated, and very much so, the meaning of "butter" is hardly incomprehensible. And is "hard-to-make-out-the-meaning-of" better than "incomprehensible?"

The more I look at Anglish the less I like it. It is not scholarly, and has an odor of xenophobia about it.

douglas.bryant July 26, 2010, 10:57pm

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JJM says: “Does anybody have an opinion or thoughts on “Anglish”…”
Yes, it’s a ridiculous idea. “Samebloodedness”? Get a life."

Perhaps instead of being rude and insulting you could explain your point of view. A good English word is "prat".

shaunc July 26, 2010, 11:09pm

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Actually, I'm quite curious. If you really and truly strip out every single borrowed word (and don't substitute any archaic ones), and only leave modern words that are directly descended from, oh, I dunno, Proto-Indo-European, just how many words would be left? I could be wrong, but I suspect that most of the words that the Anglish fans espouse are still borrowed, however long ago.

porsche July 26, 2010, 11:23pm

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You know, ther are a lot of haters of this anglish stuff. I for one have taken a liking to it. There seems to be no lack of misconception about it either. Supporters of anglish do not simply wish to purge the language of latin, greek and french and leave it at that. No, they very often innovate, propose replacement words, words that don't already exist in english. Like 'bookery' for 'library', or how about is-hood for 'existence.' God that last one is great-- do you see the beauty of it though, the meaning behind the word 'ishood' is clear from its parts 'is' + 'hood,' 'is-hood is the quality of being, expressed by 'is', by parallel with sisterhood or brotherhood. So it is not at all evident that these anglish guys are out to impoverish the language-for the words they remove, they give what they feel are better ones, ones more in keeping with the core of english, because in a way this makes english easier, and more beautiful too, since it connects meaning to word-structure, word-composition. And in many cases, supporters of english do not seek to do away with latin, greek, and french words, they're fine with them, they just want there to be a choice, they want there to be the option of choosing native words over "foreign" ones. As for simple, every-day words like butter, and cup, pointing to those and saying the purpose of anglish is to purge english of those words is very misleading-- if you read up on anglish, you see that most of the backers of anglish are fine with those small, simple words--its words like rectify and inebriate, and consanguinity that seem to tick them off. And look they have a point, consanguinity is pretty incomprehensible to the native english speaker without a dictionary, I'm sorry it just is, just ask a four year old what consanguinity means and you'll see, they'll be clueless. Then ask them what samebloodedness means and you'll more than likely get an answer. And after all, what's so bad about the good old Anglo-Saxon word "samebloodedness" anyway?

jx_montinaro July 27, 2010, 2:22pm

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I hope you're not counting me among the "haters." I should clarify my comment about xenophobia. That should not have been directed against Anglish in general. Rather, I sense on the "Anglish Moot" website—which is a Wiki, and open to editing—the idea that English has been polluted by outside influences. For example:

"English (Inglish) is the theidish speech of the English (Inglish) folk wherever they be found in the world. Hence it should be made up mostly of words which were in English (Inglish) before 1066 and have theidish (germanic) roots."

I take issue with that. English has not been the sole property of "the English folk" for quite some time. Far more English speakers are non-English than English.

English is a great language partly because it adopts foreign words gladly. English has more lexemes than any other language. This gives it a subtlety that is hard to beat. That English has words that are not understood by toddlers is not a bad thing. (And I'm not convinced a four-year-old child would understand "samebloodedness" any more than "consanguinity." My guess is that both would be incomprehensible.)

As I said, Anglish seems at first blush an interesting exercise. But on closer inspection it seems more a parlor game. For example: what are "uncleftish springballs?" (This is a word taken from the "Moot.") Give up? Atom bombs. Consanguinity is crystal in comparison.

douglas.bryant July 27, 2010, 7:46pm

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But you see atom bomb is in no way better than uncleftish springball. Of course it is the word that is in use, accepted by all english speakers. But then, what's so bad with proposing a little change?, after all that's how the english you and I know came about: through radical change. So hey, if 'uncleftish springballs' enters the language, cool, I'm all for it. Shouldn't you be too?, who praise english for its variety. Well then bring these words on, bring them all on. Remember, new words enter the langugae every day, some transiently, while some stick around, so I don't see what's all that bad with anglish words.

As for purity of language, consider this:
Some times we're so concerned with being all-accepting of 'otherness', difference, (lest we seem racist or bigoted or whatever) that we do away with what is ours in favour of foreigness. But accepting foreigness does not require rejecting nativeness. Look at Icelanders for example-- they cherish the purity of thier language, and go to some lengths to ensure that no non-native words come into it. And why shouln't they , heck they speak the language of the vikings virtually unchanged, God unchanged, how amazing is that? Are they to be called bigoted? Foreigness for the sake of diversity is great, but so is preservation of what you have.

jx_montinaro July 27, 2010, 11:46pm

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"But then, what’s so bad with proposing a little change?, after all that’s how the english you and I know came about: through radical change."

The difference is that Old English didn't become Middle English because people consciously proposed the introduction of French words into English based on some argument that it would make the language better. But that's what the Anglish people are doing. They're trying to change the language by decree based on their specific idea of "better". But no language is intrinsically better than any other. And an attempt to change English by decree will never work anyway.

goofy July 28, 2010, 6:53am

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I don't know about that--I would say that decree had something to do with OE becoming ME, at least a self imposed one (based on the idea of the superiority of french and latin), and for sure this 'self-imposed' decree played a role in the transition from middle english to modern english, with a lot of native words being lost in favour of french or latin ones, precisely because these were thought of as being better. And look, whether it be by 'decree' or by the natural happening of things, whatever, change is change. And remember, it's not so much a decree as it is a proposal--noone can force english speakers to take on anglish words.

jx_montinaro July 28, 2010, 10:28am

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"Perhaps instead of being rude and insulting you could explain your point of view. A good English word is 'prat'."

Now who's being insulting? The idea of a "pure" English language is silly and, as one poster noted, smacks of more than a little xenophobia.

It's the sort of thing that once had an appeal among certain people with dodgy views on ethnicity and race.

JJMBallantyne July 28, 2010, 11:38am

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In response to Goofy's assertion that "an attempt to change English by decree will never work anyway," Jm writes:

"I don’t know about that–I would say that decree had something to do with OE becoming ME, at least a self imposed one (based on the idea of the superiority of french and latin), and for sure this ’self-imposed’ decree played a role in the transition from middle english to modern english, with a lot of native words being lost in favour of french or latin ones, precisely because these were thought of as being better. ..."

But history shows that a different dynamic was behind the transition from Old English to Modern English, what we call Middle English. During the period when French was the language of government—from the Norman invasion of 1066 to the opening of Parliament in 1362—the English nation was trilingual, but it's people largely were not. French became the language of government and the royal court, Latin remained the language of education and the Church, but the vast majority of English people spoke only their native tongue.

It was during this period that the shift from Old English began, not by decree, either imposed or self-imposed, but as a natural process. The fact that the people spoke a different tongue than the isolated elites meant that their language was free to change unchecked by any authority. There are many causes of the change, such as the increase in regional dialects during the Middle English period, but none resemble a "decree." It could be argued that the end of Middle English was induced, at least in part, by forces of authority, such as the return of English to government use at the end of the 14th century and the introduction of the printing press at the end of the 15th; both would have strong stabilizing effect on the language.

As for "a lot of native words being lost in favour of french or latin ones" (Jn again), this is simply not what happened. French and Latin words were indeed added to the language, but they coexisted with English ones; they did not supplant them. This is reflected in our legal language today, in which couplets like "breaking and entering," where an English word was paired with a French borrowing so that monolingual defendants could understand what they were being charged with.

douglas.bryant July 28, 2010, 3:46pm

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Let me remind you that 80% of native english words were lost, that's 80%, that's a huge amount, --these were replaced by latin and french ones, which means these were favoured, and that they did indeed supplant the english ones. Look I don't want to discuss the semantics of 'decree' and 'favour', the fact is that most of the english wordstock was lost.

jx_montinaro July 28, 2010, 4:07pm

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The 80% figure you cite (from Wikipedia?) is at the high end of what linguists estimate were lost from Old English. Yes, some have been supplanted by words of French or Latin origin. But others were synonyms for other Old English words that lost popularity and fell into disuse. It cannot be said that 80% of OE words were replaced by French or Latin ones, though I concede that some were. But 20,000 or so French-speakers were insufficient to supplant the language of England, which had 1.5 million inhabitants when the Normans arrived, and three million when English re-asserted itself as the sole language. The rise to dominance of the dialect of London over other regional dialects probably killed off more words than the Normans ever did.

It is important to note that half of the thousand most commonly used words in Old English survive in Modern English, and 80% of the thousand most commonly used words in Modern English derive from Old English. And fully a third of the 10,000 most common words in Modern English derive from OE. The frequency of use of words is as important as the mere quantity, if not more so. For example, the word "consanguinity" has probably been used more in this discussion than most people use it in a lifetime. It would not surprise me if most of the words used in this discussion are from Old English.

douglas.bryant July 28, 2010, 5:52pm

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LOL at the cries of racism and xenophobia. Here’s one for you: you’re supporting the genocide of a native tongue by Roman imperialism. Supporters of Anglish aren’t saying you’re not allowed to use foreign words. This isn’t something to be offended by. People who support this movement (bloggers, novelists perhaps), could start using Anglo-Saxon words; maybe a few words will gain momentum and become commonplace.

grenadater July 28, 2010, 6:10pm

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"The 80% figure you cite (from Wikipedia?) is at the high end of what linguists estimate were lost from Old English. Yes, some have been supplanted by words of French or Latin origin. But others were synonyms for other Old English words that lost":

figure, cite, linguists, estimate, supplanted, synonyms, popularity, disuse, replace, origin, insufficient, inhabitants, arrived, reasserted, sole, dominance, dialect, important, commonly, survive, derive, frequency, quantity,probably, discussion, people, surprise-- the words of latin/french outspring that you used in 2 paragraphs. That's a lot.

And as for:
"But 20,000 or so French-speakers were insufficient to supplant the language of England, which had 1.5 million inhabitants when the Normans arrived, and three million when English re-asserted itself as the sole language"

This IS in large part what happened-- open up any modern english dictinary, and the first random word you'll land on will probably be from latin/french. Then have a look at an old english text or an OE dictionary, do you recognize most of the words?, some , yes, most. no!

jx_montinaro July 28, 2010, 7:02pm

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I originally asked the question about "Anglish" to garner opinions. I do not think that the promoters of Anglish are xenophobic, they merely prefer to use an Anglo-Saxon word where possible. Someone also mentioned the loss of words due to the prevalence of London English. My understanding is that West Saxon (Wessex) evolved into modern English. The people in the area that would become London probably spoke Kentish.

In the West County of England, some small portion of West Saxon survives in the West Country dialect of Somerset, Devon and Dorset. I spent the first 7 years of my life in Somerset and was surprised to find that words I had taken for granted had no currency outside of the West Country. I be, she be, gurt, grockle, (f)varmer, hark at ee, wacker, smooth the dog, etc. I never saw a non-English person until I was 7 years old at Heathrow Airport in London. Of course with modern communications this relic of West Saxon is all but vanished.

Curiously, when we emigrated to Canada, I found myself in southwestern Ontario. The names in the southwest of Ontario hark back to the West Country - Exeter, Wellington, Tavistock, Weston, etc. The accent of SW Ont is heavily rhotic like the West Country. Travelling between family in Somerset and Ontario it is easy to hear the similarities.

shaunc July 28, 2010, 8:01pm

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Shaun C:

West Saxon was dominant from the eighth to the eleventh century, but it was not the progenitor of Modern English. Sorry. London, the seat of government, and Cambridge and Oxford, homes of the preeminent universities, proved stronger. As for xenophobia, I revised my comment to apply only to the "Moot" website, and only to portions of that. Frankly, I'm sorry I brought it up. It distracts from what has been a mostly constructive conversation.


It is true that Modern English has a great many words of French or Latin origin: each comprises nearly a third of the lexicon—wordstock, if you insist—according to some sources. But the story of the entry of these words into English is more complex than your account of it. And more interesting.

You say: "Then have a look at an old english text or an OE dictionary, do you recognize most of the words?, some , yes, most. no!" Well, of course. Words change. Spellings change. The structure of the language has changed from Old English to now. Old English used inflectional endings to signal grammatical structure. Modern English uses word order instead of inflection.

Anglish attempts to graft pseudo-Anglo-Saxon words onto the structure of Modern English. This is why it is a parlor game, not much different from speaking Klingon at a costume party. If I am wrong, if there is a credible source or website to prove me so, I would be glad to hear of it.

douglas.bryant July 28, 2010, 8:52pm

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Nick (needed)
Mail (will stay hidden) (needed)
That's the best I can try.

alt.people.davidcalman July 28, 2010, 10:22pm

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"Anglish attempts to graft pseudo-Anglo-Saxon words onto the structure of Modern English. This is why it is a parlor game, not much different from speaking Klingon at a costume party. If I am wrong, if there is a credible source or website to prove me so, I would be glad to hear of it.":

Let's cut the crap, I'm well aware that the grammar of the english language was highly simplified with the doing away of inflection and such. But that's not what I was referring to, I think that's pretty obvious. Grammar change is one thing, wordstock change is another. Take italian for example-- it lost the bulk of its inflection, but it kept its words, and didn't take on many foreing ones. Just because grammar changes, that doesn't mean we should say, "oh, grammar changed, to hell with it then, let's change the words, too."
Anglish words that are "ressurections" of lost OE words are the products of an attempt to show what these words would be like, had they overlived. There's nothing illogical about it-- if these words had made it through the centuries, they would look something like these updated-into-modern english forms. The way these words are updated is by applying to them the phonological changes that english went through. It's not that hard. If you want an example of a germanic language that underwent huge grammatical change but kept most of its vocab, then take swedish, heck look at Norwegian, it lost virtually all of its inflection, but not its wordstock.

jx_montinaro July 28, 2010, 10:52pm

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"Let’s cut the crap"

Wonderful. I have been insulted in Old French by an advocate for Anglish. Let me think: what would be the Anglish word for "irony?"

“oh, grammar changed, to hell with it then, let’s change the words, too.”

What does that mean? It bears no relation to any argument I have made. I have tried to explain the development of English into its modern form. I have argued that the mere substitution of mock-Anglo-Saxon neologisms for established English words does not result in "“ressurections” [sic] of lost OE words," as you assert, but in awkward replacements for well-understood English words, and in words which lack the nuance of their English forebears.

I have tried to stick to historical facts. Insofar as I have expressed an opinion it is this: adherents of "Anglish" debase history, picking and choosing where it is convenient, ignoring or inventing it where it is not. Let me reiterate: at the core of Anglish is an interesting academic exercise which seeks the Anglo-Saxon roots of Modern English. But closer examination reveals it to be, in practice, a simple word game.

douglas.bryant July 29, 2010, 4:55am

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"What does that mean? It bears no relation to any argument I have made. ":

Sure it does-- I pointed to most OE words being unrecognizable by modern englsish speakers. You then said this was because of inflection being lost (this is simply not true, inflectin and wods themselves are two different things), which seems to suggest that you are of the opinion that because grammar erodes, loss of words themselves is made acceptable, hence my ironic statement "“oh, grammar changed, to hell with it then, let’s change the words, too.”

"adherents of “Anglish” debase history, picking and choosing where it is convenient, ignoring or inventing it where it is not":

well I don't see how this is the case. How is it that forseeking (oops, sorry, attempting), to relifen (sorry, I meant ressurect) OE words, and shaping new ones from already is-some (forgive me, existing) english roots beneathens (debases) english yorelore (damn, should've said history)? I just don't see the connection (there's a nice french word for you). Please don't heen (humiliate, from OE hienan) yourself by pointing to the latin 're' in relifen, as being foreing-- remember, most anglishers are not bent on fullthrough and utter cleansing of english from foreigness.

Look man we anglishers just love the core of english, a core we feel is germanic, (I'm of italian forekinship (ancestory), so this has nothing to do with race-- language provides identity beyond race). We're fore sure not all scholars, and our think-ups of new english words might not be perfect, but we're not saying they are, and I don't think you would think that being imperfect is the same thing as beneathening, or showing disrespect for english. Let me tell you a lot english words of latin outspring come from the past participle of the latin verb. This makes the past tense of these english verbs pretty illogical (eg. the verb expose, from the pp. of the latin exponere. So exposed is sort of like exposed-ed, when you think about), and yet we use these verbs daily without complaint, even though they're illogical and thus arguably imperfect.

jx_montinaro July 29, 2010, 11:09am

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Re: "Just because grammar changes, that doesn’t mean we should say, “oh, grammar changed, to hell with it then, let’s change the words, too."

Come on, now. French and Latin didn't make its way into English because anyone said "Hey, look at this. Our grammar is evolving. I've got a great idea! Let's make up a bunch of new words and change two thirds of our language. Let's do it right now. That sounds like fun. Let's form a club or something." Nothing even remotely like that ever happened in English history. Not ever (what's more, you already knew that). Oh, wait. Yes it has. That's exactly what Anglish is, isn't it?

I know, why don't we just make Esperanto the new world language?

porsche July 29, 2010, 1:59pm

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"Nothing even remotely like that ever happened in English history. Not ever (what’s more, you already knew that)"-- that's not at all what I was suggesting, clearly.
That was a sarcastic remark aimed at what I thought Douglas' opinion was suggesting- it had nothing to do with english history.

jx_montinaro July 29, 2010, 4:50pm

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You wrote:

". . . I pointed to most OE words being unrecognizable by modern englsish speakers. You then said this was because of inflection being lost (this is simply not true, inflectin and wods themselves are two different things), which seems to suggest that you are of the opinion that because grammar erodes, loss of words themselves is made acceptable, hence my ironic statement ““oh, grammar changed, to hell with it then, let’s change the words, too.”

Let me reiterate:

"Words change. Spellings change. The structure of the language has changed from Old English to now. Old English used inflectional endings to signal grammatical structure. Modern English uses word order instead of inflection."

This does not imply that the loss of words is acceptable, or, for that matter, unacceptable. It addresses your complaint that most OE words are unrecognizable to modern English speakers. Of course they are. They have evolved. Modern english has jettisoned gender, eschewed inflection (by and large) and adopted the Roman alphabet. Add to this the Great Vowel Shift and Old English appears foreign to modern English speakers.

You wrote:

". . . we anglishers just love the core of english, a core we feel is germanic, (I’m of italian forekinship (ancestory), so this has nothing to do with race– language provides identity beyond race)."

I have said nothing about race. Why do you bring it up?

If you love the core of English—and I don't doubt that you do—then study its history. Thomas Jefferson advocated the study of Anglo Saxon as a means of understanding Modern English. But first he actually studied it. With all due respect, your comments show a lack of knowledge of history. I cannot claim to be an expert on the history of English, but I have ventured beyond Wikipedia.

As for Anglish, well, you have my opinion on that. If you wish to change anyone's opinion of it, including mine, you will need to do better than peppering your argument with Anglish neologisms. This is merely annoying.

douglas.bryant July 29, 2010, 10:33pm

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Right well, there's ignoring everything I've said.
You seem to missing my arguments man, and then pointing to history, without going beyond that. And by the way, againstwise (contrary) to your foretruthing (assumption), I have studied Anglo-Saxon. Sorry for the anglish.

jx_montinaro July 30, 2010, 1:01am

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Well, for those of you who, unlike Douglas, don't find it sinful to further the saxon side of english, may I point you to (the articles written are in no way intended to be comprehensive, or reliable sources of information, the whole point of them is to provide some sort of anglish reading material). Explore the site, especially the wordbooks, where anglish word proposals are made; and add to them if you feel you have some good ideas. Also, check out this site deals only with bringing back some of OE into modern english, and doesn't deal with the creation of words from english roots.
As well, if any of you are bloggers or novelists, and again underhold (support) the movement, try using some of these anglish words--exposing the public to these words is really the only way make these words will catch on.

jx_montinaro July 30, 2010, 1:33am

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Interesting. I just found out about this concept today through random wiki-ing and happen upon a fresh thread. I heartily approve. Though I'm studying Latin now, and love the language, there is a certain robustness lacking that one finds present in Germanic vocabulary.

scottscheule July 30, 2010, 3:16pm

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I agree with Jm on one point, at least: if you want to learn more about Anglish, go to, also known as "The Anglish Moot." I mentioned this site in an earlier posting.

Study this site with an open but discerning mind, and with a ear to actual history. If one plows through its drifts of Anglish neologisms a slippery revisionist history is laid bare. While there may be bare patches of truth, the puddles of half-truth are heavily salted, and slippery areas of historical inconvenience are often ignored. So watch your footing.

For a more learned and nuanced history of English, I recommend "The Stories of English," by David Crystal.

douglas.bryant August 1, 2010, 11:39pm

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Hi Talking to an civil engineer at the bus stop, he used the word potable instead of drinkable....reason of course all the textbooks at uni use it. Be nice if potable meant able to be potted.
Secondly I looked up decide on the anglish moot and they suggest choose instead, although I would guess it is norman french in origin. But what else? "fall upon"?

My view is it is not feasible to go back. However it would be nice to avoid Latinisms where feasible. As a practical matter I think short words of french origin don't sound too bad eg point, choose, change. It's the long words from latin like agglutination which still sound foreign to me. However it's an uphill task... changing from system to framework would take a lot of pushing.

Lastly, I am so used to Latinisms, it's difficult to think without them. Every time I need to check for foreschlage (suggestions) ... oh I give up

jayles August 12, 2010, 10:13pm

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accept it!!
the english is now a romance language, like the french or spanish languages.
every day there are less germanic words in the language.

soka-avatar_7 August 16, 2010, 6:32pm

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Yes English has for sure been overrun with romance loan words. My only grouch is that latin-borrowings to me seem to have no flavor, color, or feeling. For example, "agglutination" means very little to me, but "heaping together" or "together-heaping" brings up a graphic action image. How much more colorful!

Also, latinisms are sometimes have snob value, stemming from the use of French/Latin in business and at uni. EG purchase instead of buy.

The real problem is for many common romance words there is no obvious English substitute, and the meaning would have to be clear from the outset : eg "forelay" might be nice word for suggestion but it doesn't exist yet, though "input" might do.

However the whole notion founders for want of some means of putting it into practice.

jayles August 18, 2010, 10:52pm

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For those only now noticing it, I point out that loan-words have been part of English since its beginnings: Google "Old Norse."

If Latin-borrowings "have no flavor, color, or feeling" for you, perhaps the problem is not with the words but with your understanding of English, and of its history. (By the way, "agglutination” is a noun. Gerunds like “heaping together” and “together-heaping” are verbs.)

Personally, I find agglutination a colorful word, full of flavor and feeling. Not a word I'd toss on the together-heap of history. (Whatever that means.)

dogreed August 19, 2010, 2:25am

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English will never be purged of Latinity. Words like "agglutinate" (and "lamp" and "butter" [both ultimately Greek, actually!] and "story" and "passion") are part of the language, here to stay. We would be so much poorer without these wonderful words.

Still, "Anglish" is healthy and useful as a tendency and a touchstone. English poets have found it particularly useful. Gerard Manley Hopkins was interested in this movement back in the 19th cen., and the results for his poetry were spectacular. Seamus Heaney specializes in unearthing the Saxon roots of Ulster words he grew up with. JRR Tolkien was nostalgic for a pre-1066 English, and his prose is always mindfull of the strata of English. He was able to revive certain nifty words like "mathom", for which I at least am grateful.

wisemeredith August 19, 2010, 11:49am

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amen to GMH
although hope of purging English has indeed grown gray hairs

jayles August 19, 2010, 9:56pm

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anglish is a font - based on accurate angles

danwinter August 19, 2010, 10:39pm

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Methinks many have not read the entirety of the thoughts behind Anglish. I do not think that it was intended to be nit-picky about replacing or purging all non-Anglo-Saxon from English. I believe the original intent was to use the Anglo-Saxon choice where it was practicable. Some words have anglo-saxon alternates and others do not.

I do not see "April showers bring May flowers" being replaced with "Whan that Aprille, with hise shoures soote, The droghte of March hath perced to the roote And bathed every veyne in swich licour, Of which vertu engendred is the flour"...somewhat wordy, puffed up and awkward by modern standards ...then again, politicians might like it.

Mind you, when listening to international football matches it seems the England fans are already yelling "Engelond" out loud..

shaunc August 24, 2010, 12:42pm

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more on agglutination....which has been bugging me.
1) respell it as: agluetination... suggesting glue
2) the "cling-on effect" (courtesy of Startrek)
3) it is the "beaver-dam" of human history which creates the pond we live in today!

jayles September 8, 2010, 3:53am

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fuck french, fuck latin, fuck greek. Let's take our tongue back. May english be english. Let's undo the sullying of our tongue brought about by the Norman infall, and bring it back to the wuldor and thrum (splendour, OE þrymm) that it once was. Those who gainstand us are but half-wits held thanes, haftlings, to the misbelief that now-time english is some kind of awesome, overworldly tongue. They think that it lords over all other tongues as an outfollow of the broadness and sundriness of its wordstock, and that it is far better that its foretime birth-giver, OE. Hah! broadness, what overdriving. Most words are scientific jargon that noone ever uses, and its sundriness is but basteredness that draws from the understandableness of the tongue, and from the selfhood and whoness of its mother-tongue speekers.

jh September 18, 2010, 2:15pm

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this is a call to all those who becraft writcraft (literature). It is upon you that much of the weight of the upkeeping and berging of the english tongue lies. Your works are read by the masses and have a weighty inhit on the overshaping, growth and unfolding of our tongue. You have the wald, the canhood to bring back sorrily forgotten, forsaken words of yore, and make them one with our speech again. By the same token, you can carry by to the further downbreaking of the core of english by doing away with inhomeish words in forelove of foreign ones.
However, you the common folk also have an answerlyness to uphold the englishness of english. In your everyday speech, take care to show forechoice to english words and not french or latin or greek ones.
The overliving of english hangs off on all of us. In a time where it would seem that english, having been stolen by the world, can no longer be shaped and moulded by its mother-tongue speekers, we CAN bring back some if not much of its forgotten roots and make sure that those that are still with us live on.

In kinship and in kithship from Canada.

polh September 18, 2010, 3:19pm

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I love learning languages and finding out about word roots. It is good to have a big wordhoard if one is a wordsmith or wishes to clarify in simpler language. My English vocabulary increased muchly when I learnt Latin. I agree with the people who complain Latinate words are sometimes used in snobbishness. I found a great poem, "Aestivation" ,where as many Latinate words as possible are used. I like a bit of humour and eccentricity.
I'm not sure what Jon C's gripe is with the KJV; if you don't like it get a different translation! The KJV was intentionally written in grand-sounding language. "Thou" might be out of date now, and even somewhat when the KJV was written, but it's a nice Viking pronoun (the Vikings got so integrated English took on some of their pronouns, the most internal parts of language). It's all Indo-European, so is it really such a big deal?
It's true science uses a lot of Latin and Greek word stems to describe things. The joy is in learning the classical languages and having a laugh at the simple meanings of the scholarly-sounding names.
I don't like how some people seem to be attacking Chaucer. Nobody here has suggested a return to late 14th century English. It won't please modernists and it won't please Angliscs; it's already full of Frenchy words. Chaucer should be everyone's friend because he wrote in English. The late 14th century saw the resurgence of English as a literary language.
Wordplay is a great thing. Our choice of words can convey tone and create atmosphere. Language changes, not just from foreign words coming in. Sometimes nonsense words enter common speech, e.g. "chortle". Shakespeare coined a lot of compound words. I see Anglisc as a bit of fun at getting some words into common use and reminding us of the history of our language. I like seeing what our language *coud* have been like. Today I've also been reading Proto-Indo-European, another scholarly reconstruction that might leave some of you wondering why anyone bothers.

(Could is a misspelling because "would" and "should" are from "will" and "shall", so should have "l" in, but "can" should not lead to "could". Chaucer spells it "koude", and "coud" seems to be the logical modern way.)

richardprys September 19, 2010, 11:42am

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I think I have made a mistake; "them" is the Viking pronoun. "Thou" is from OE. I probably should not write when tired.

richardprys September 19, 2010, 9:11pm

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Thou is not out of date
It is still used inside the family in the north of England

jayles September 24, 2010, 11:21pm

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Jay, I think that would count as dialect. People would probably think you strange if you wrote like that in a national newspaper column.

richardprys September 25, 2010, 5:44am

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maybe it would give the right impression then!

jayles September 30, 2010, 10:06pm

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At GOOFY ... from July 28, 2010

How do you think the Jews revived and updated Hebrew? If they can bring back to life (oh, sorry: "revive") a 2000 year old dead tongue, we can bring back some old words and/or make new ones.

Before I go on (continue), I will let you know that I LOVE Latin. But I also love English and I want to keep English as English and not something that's slowly (or quickly) turning into a Latin-like tongue.

I like using semantic calques and breaking down (analyzing*) the word and translating all of its parts. The word "remorse" literally means "again-bitten" from "re(again) + morse (mordere=to bite)". In fact, "ayenbite/againbite" was the Middle English translation of "remorse". Why can't we still use it today?

*analyze literally means unfasten, set free, release

atom = a (not) + tom (cut) = uncut or notcut... The proposed Anglish word is "uncleft" from un + past participle of "cleave". We use the term "cleft lip" in medical jargon. So most folks have an UNcleft lip. Do you see the link/transparency?

Another way, is to use the simpler synonyms like "nonstop" instead of incessant, often/frequently, night/nocturnal, eatable/edible. If a kid saw "eatable", he would now right away that means "something that can be eaten" but he won't know wtf "edi" means until someone tells him. Use "unendingly" instead of "infinitely". I hate the word "infinitesimally", by the way.

Also, older English words are still being used today for technology. Take "ware" which means something like "tool" (i.e. hardware, glassware, silverware). Where do you find "ware"? Well... go to a WAREhouse. So in today's high-tech world, we have hardware and software, input and output, download and upload, intake and outtake, and network.

I am in favor of bringing back old words and slowly (or quickly!!) turning English (back) into Anglish. Literacy would sky-rocket. If you don't believe me, read about the Korean writing system called "Hangul". Before the adoption of the Hangul, the Koreans used the Chinese writing system (Hanja) and only the elite/upper class could read and write. And they probably wanted to keep it that way because they OPPOSED any new, simple way of writing... just like some people today look down on using simple, every-day words in English and condemn as racist or xenophobic anybody who wants to make English more Germanic/Anglish.

Our tongue is turning into a mess of words that we have to study and study to learn and understand. Why go to the ophthalmologist when I could just go to the eye-doctor? Fraternal/brotherly, paternal/fatherly, family/kin, homicide/murder, miscellaneous/sundries

I also hate it when English words are considered dirty while the Latin ones are ok. For example piss/urine, shit/feces, dick/penis. If I use the words on the left, I'm suddenly "cussing" and talking like a crude and possibly uneducated man.

addyatg October 3, 2010, 2:26am

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I personally think that Martin Luther King's speech in Anglo Saxon is very poetic-sounding. Go to or just read below...

I am happy to come together with you today in what will go down as the greatest gathering for freedom in our homeland‘s tale. Five score years ago, a great American in whose betokening shadow we stand today, underwrote his name on the deed giving freedom to the black thrall. This timely boding came as a beacon, a light to thralls in their millions hoping that, their days spent withering in wretchedness' searing fire had come to an end. It came as a listful dawn to end thralldom's long night. But one hundred years on, the black American's life is still not free. One hundred years on, freedom in the blackman’s life is still sadly crippled by asunderhood's shackles and unfairness' hidden fetters.

One hundred years after, the black American still lives on a lonely island, in neediness, amidst wealth's brim. One hundred years after, the black American is still ailing in the nooks, on fellowship's edge, in his own land. So we have come here today to spotlight a shameful tale.

In a way we have come to our homeland’s headtown to call in a draught. When our great folkdom's fathers wrote the haughty words of the Books-of-Rights and the Call for Lonestance, they were underwriting a hight to which every American was to fall erewardly.

The deed was a hight that all men, yes, black and white would have life's yieldless rights, freedom and the right to seek eadiness.

It is fair to see today that Americans have been found wanting in fairness, doing little on this hightful deed in their dealings with their black brothers. Rather than holding worthiness firmly in their hearts in following up this hallowed call to right a wrong, America has given its black folk a bad draught. A draught that has come back with the words ”not enough fee.”

But we unwilling to believe that the horden is without fairness or fee. We also are unwilling to believe that there is not enough fee in this land's great hordern. So we have come to take in fee this draught, a draught that will give upon asking freedom's boons and hele's fairness.

We have also come to this hallowed spot to bring to America’s mind again Now's pressing need . This is not the time to take a cooling-off sop or the calming healthdrug of let's go forward little-by-little.

Now is the time to make true this mighty hight.

Now it is the time for the black folk to rise from aparthood's darkness and lonely hollow into fair-go's sunlit path .

Now it is time to lift our homeland out of this folkstrandish quicksand onto the rock of brotherly steadfastness.

Now is the time to give a fair deal to all God’s children.

It would be dooming for the homeland to stay deaf to the black folk's thronging call for freedoms and rights and underguess their steadfastness in seeking them now. Their sweltering summer's lawful gladlessness will not go-away until there is freedom with fairness. Nineteen sixty-three is not the end but a beginning. Those who hoped that the black American needed only to let-off some steam and will now be fulfilled will have a stark mindjarring awakening if the homeland goes back to its old, unfair ways.

There will be neither be a frithsome soughing over America until the black American is given his full rights. The uprising, like a windwhirl, will shake our folkdom’s frame until the sun shines fairly and evenly on all.

We can never be fulfilled as long as our bodies, weighed down and tired with the day's wayfaring cannot get board and lodging in inns along our highways and in our great towns.

We cannot be fulfilled as long as the black folks leave small wretchsteads to end-up only in larger wretchsteads.

We can never be fulfilled as long as our bairns have taken from them their self-worth and have their selfhood reaved from them by boards that read “ for whites only. ”

We cannot be fulfilled as long as a black folk in Mississippi cannot folk-aye and black folk in New York believe that they have nothing for which to folk-aye.

No, no we are not fulfilled and we will not be fulfilled until fairness rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

I am not unmindful that many have come here today ordeal-wearied and sorely smited. Others have come from steads where seeking your freedoms has left you harried and hounded, and smitten by harshness' biting winds, wrought upon you by those given to uphold your rights and freedoms.

You have been old-hands at finding understanding and insight in bearing the burden. Go on with your work with the belief that dreeing an unearned weird will make you free.

Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to South Carolina, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the wretchsteads, to the small black townships throughout our now great towns, knowing that somehow this wrong can and will be made right.

Let us not wallow in the yesterday’s waned and withered hopes. I say to you, my friends, we have the burdens in our heart and toils in our the mind, today and tomorrow.

I have a dream. It is a foresight deeply and longly rooted in the American mind.

I have a dream that one day this folkdom will rise up and live out the true meaning of its belief that all men are made even.

I have a dream that one day in Georgia's red hills one-time thralls' sons and one-time thrall-owners’ sons will sit down together at brotherhood's table.

I have a mindsight that one day Mississippi shire, a shire sweltering under downtrodden-ness' heat, will be shaped otherwisely into an lush well, brimming with freedom and fairness.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a land where they will be deemed not by their skin’s hue, but by their deeds.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day down in Alabama, with it’s evil-willed hindering haters, its leader his lips dripping words, bitter, hateful and worth-quelling; that one day right down in Alabama little black children, carls and frows, can link hands with little white carls and frows, as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that every dale shall be swallowed-up, every hill shall be lifted up and every fell shall be made low, the rough places will be made smooth, and the crooked places will be made straight and the Lord's greatness shall be made for all to see and all flesh shall see it together.

This is our hope. This is the belief that I will go back to the South filled with. With this belief we will have the strength to hew out from hopelessness’ fell, hope's stone .

With this hope we can shape anew our heart clattering, sadly beating for our land asundered, into a brotherhood gladdened and gleeful.

With this belief we can work together, make our beseeching to God together, to dree together, to be locked-up together, to climb up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

This will be the day when all God’s bairns will sing with new understanding “My land ‘tis of thee, sweet land of freedom, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the first white settler's pride, from every fellside, let freedom ring!”

And if America is to be a great land, this must become true. So let freedom ring from the hilltops in New Hampshire. And let freedom from New York‘s mighty fells ring.

Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies in Pennsylvania

Let freedom ring from the snow-topped Rockies in Colorado.

Let freedom ring from California’s wendsome slopes.

But not only that, let freedom ring from Georgia’s Stony Fell.

Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill throughout Mississippi and along every fellside.

When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every boarding-house and every small hamlet, from every shire and every great town, we can speed up the day when all God’s children, black and white, Jew and those who are not Jewish, Romish-church men and those who are not Romish churchmen, can link hands and sing the old song, in words sung by this land's enthralled black folk , Free at last, free at last. “Thank God Almighty, we are free at last.’’

addyatg October 3, 2010, 2:30am

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AT - PAUL RODRIGUEZ from July 15, 2010

Paul said: "Shouldn’t that be 'a of English, which words of over those of and' ?" in response to "a form of English linguistic purism, which favours words of native (Germanic) origin over those of foreign (mainly Romance and Greek) origin."

It would be more like: "Anglish is a kind of English-speech cleanliness which notes (uses) words of Anglo-Saxon [you wouldn't need to use "native" in this case] birth/stock instead of outside (mainly Romanish and Greekish) birth/stock."

or even: "...instead of words which are not of Anglo-Saxon birth/stock".

Looking at Dutch, Swedish, and other Germanic toungues as templates, "native" could be "inborn". Afterall, "native" is from "nativus < natus < nasci "to be born"

A normal translation would be "Anglish is a kind of English-speech cleanliness which notes (uses) words that come from Anglo-Saxon instead of those that don't."

One thing folks must bear in mind is that languages should never be translated word-for-word. As one teacher told me (I'm paraphrasing) "We are translating the Thought or the Idea, not just words." In my linguistics classes, I've seen a sentence of five words in one language turn into a sentence of 15 words in another language. And just because one language has a prefix on a verb does not mean that the verb the target language HAS to have one too. Also, some words do not have morphemes that other languages do. I don't know how the heck "-ism" would be written in Anglish. We have to generalize and approximate because we only need to worry about conveying the IDEA and not every single morpheme.

Landshape or Landscape = Geography
Turf = territory (in gang jargon, but we can use too!)
Speechcraft = Linguistics

One last thing... Folks used to say "I'm so excited about trip to the beach!" and are now beginning to say "I'm so stoked..." At first, I hated it but I soon realized that, semantically speaking, they mean the same thing. To stoke a fire is to excite a fire.

I used to dislike the word "stronghold" and I preferred "fort" until the day I learned that "fort" comes from the Latin word "fortis" which means "strong."

addyatg October 3, 2010, 3:24am

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I swear this is my last input. It's 4:07 in the "morning" and I am freaking tired.

We should fix English spelling. I will not explain the rules in detail, but here is a quick speaking-guide.
Main Vowels are a, e, i, o, u = ah, eh, ee, oh, oo = as in father, bed, feet, bone, food
Other vowels are marked: ä (or æ), ï, ü = as in bat, bit, foot
The schwa vowel can be represented a dot below a, e, and o so that words like America won't be mutilated---> Umeriku. (But I don't know how to type the under-dot!)

Diphthongs ai, ei, oi = eye, ay,oy, au = as in fly, break, boy, cow

The consonants should be easy. Only change is the addition of thorn ( þ ) and eth (which I don't know how to type)

The only letters I want to improve is i and ï. The i with one dot is "ee" as in "feet, machine" and the ï with two dots is short as in "fit, bit, sit" but I think they look too much alike, plus, words like "needed" will look like "...nidïd..." So, when necessary, I might make a double i for the long "ee" sound. So niidid = needed.

Modul werdz shüd bi speld "shüd, wüd, küd" but þu "umlaut" simbul iz nat nidid bikuz uv hau aftin þiz werdz ar yuzd. þu freiz "have to" shud bi speld "häf tu" or "hæf tu". It meiks no sints þät wi hav þhri diferint spelingz for faiv werds wich saund ekzäkli þu seim (to, too, two). Wi kan fiks þis prablum bai speling al uv þïm "TU". If yu kan nat underständ wat ai äm seying (or seiying, but I prefer "seying") þin wat þu hel ar yu duing hir? --- I am going to switch subjects. -- Ai häv u gurlfrind and her neim is Jäzmin and shi iz friking kyut (or kiut = cute). Shi iz u Meksikin gurl but duznt spik much Spänish bikuz her perints never taht her hau tu spik þu rait wei. --- þu taim iz nau 4:35 in þu morning. Ai am going tu slip. Güd nait tu al uv yu.

addyatg October 3, 2010, 4:33am

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I steven overone with the forothering of english spelling. I'm not hardcore about it, but it might not be such a bad thing, and it might actually be a great thing.
However, I don't see the need to add accents to english spelling. This is too big of a forothering and unlikely to catch on. How's this for a put-forth: for vowels, pick the spelling that shows up the most, or is the most "linked" to that vowelsound and make that the one and only spelling for that vowel. For byspell, the vowel /i/ as in need, feed, heel, see, should be spelt ''ee''. This works, forwhy every english speaker knows that "ee'' is always pronounced long, that is, as /i/. Doing it this way, you're not really adding anything to english spelling, your just taking what's already there, and regularizing it, and that's key, forwhy it's the method thats abids the least change, and will thus be the most likely to be taken on. Following this logic here's a list of english vowels with what I think would be good spellings for them:

the vowel in but, what, luck-- u
the vowel in food, rude, brood-- oo
the vowel in off, scoff, often-- o
the vowel in foe, over, row-- oe
the vowel in oar, for, soar-- oa
the vowel in see, eat, heel-- ee
the vowel in elm, elk, felt-- e
the vowel in hit, sit, bit-- i
the vowel in would, should, could-- ou
the vowel in bat, cat, rat- a

as for the shwa, I see no problem with just using e.

wlyan138 October 4, 2010, 12:40pm

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as for diphthongs:

the diphthong in fight, cry, ride-- ay
the diphthong in say, day, same-- ey
the diphthong in cow, crowd, shout-- aw
the diphthong in boy, roy, coy-- oy

wlyan138 October 4, 2010, 1:44pm

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Here's what you wrote in my spelling.

Moedel werdz shoud bee spelt shoud, woud, coud, but thu umlaut simbel is not needed becus uv haw ofen theez werdz or yoozd. Thu freyz "have to"'shoud bee spelt "haf too." It meyks noe sens that wee hav three diferent spelingz foar fayv werdz wich sawnd egzactlee thu seym. Wee can fics this problem bay speling ol uv them "too". If yoo cannot understand wut ay am seying then wut thu hel or yoo dooing heer? I am goeing too swich subjects. Ay hav a gerlfrend and her neym is Jazmin and shee iz freeking cyoot. Shee iz u meksikin gerl but dusnt speek much spanish becus her parents never tot her haw too speek thu rayt wey. thu taym iz naw 4 35 in thu moarning. Ay am goeing too sleep. Goud nayt too ol uv yoo.

wlyan138 October 4, 2010, 1:59pm

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Phonetic spelling of English is impossible because of the variations in pronounciations between the various accents. For example, I disagree with almost every example from Jm. To me girl = girl, saying = saying and name=name.

Unfortunately there are some absolutely horrendous accents in existance. I cannot foresee a time when we could ever reach agreement - we can't even agree on British v. American spellings!

shaunc October 6, 2010, 7:37pm

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Jm, your proposed spelling rules are moderate and could probably gain a foothold. Five years ago, I would have said I loved your way of spelling--I myself had written a spelling guide much like yours because I hated spelling words such as "fight, flight, I" like "fait, flait, ai". But after I noticed that the vowels in their "purest" or most basic forms are a=ah, e=eh, i=ee, o=oh, and u=oo all over the world, I decided that wi shud spel laik this (or þis) bikuz forinerz wud bi eibul tu pronaunts aur werdz corektli... and meibi wi kud tu!

For the vowel sound in "bat, cat, flat" we use a regular a with an umlaut above it like this ä or just use the "ash" symbol ..æ.. and ..Æ.. from Anglo-Saxon and Icelandic. Mai neim iz Ædum ænd ai æm frum Florida. Wat abaut yu?

Schwa is a, e, or u with a dot below it. I just don't want to muck up the word "America" ... among others. But for the most part, ther iz nuthing rang with speling "other" like "uther" or "uþer".

Unfortunately, I know bringing in new letters (æ and þ) would be a hard thing to push. So we could just continue to use ä and th.

Another thing I want to fix, is words like "watch" and "batch". We do NOT need the T in there. So it will be "wach" and "bæch/bäch".

The -er- sound can be spelled "ur" or "er" so that the word "sure" would be "shur" or "sher". I'd be ok with just UR, though. Some people say it like "shor".

The affricate "ch" that is heard in TR- and DR- words like "trust" will NOT be spelled "chrust" even though that would make sense. That way "trust" is "trust" and "dream" is "drim". Plus, the only way I could think of to represent the voiced affricate found in "dream" would be "dzhrim, džrim, dhrim, or jrim" which look like Sanskrit!

Vision = Vizhin
Germany = Jermani (I hate the way that looks, but if I want words too Look pretty I'd leave our spelling alone)

Ai want tu bi a daktur so þat/that wun dei ai kan kyer/kyor (depending on local dialect) sik folks uv ther ilnisiz. Wi must meik shur wi wash aur handz bifor and after going tu thu bathrum so az nat tu git ini baktiria an aur skin.

No matter who you are, you will be able to pronounce my writing very easily. When I send texts to my girlfriend, I write MY way and she can read it fine!

..... And the Spelling Bee would be forever doomed. Yay!

addyatg October 7, 2010, 7:18pm

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Unluckily there are some hurdles in the way of changing English spelling.
1) Computer keyboards limit the options. We need something that will work straightaway without resetting the font/language.
2) Spellings like "tonite", "lite", are becoming more common, but there may still be people in Scotland who pronounce the "gh" so getting rid of even "gh" is fraught with issues.
3) Some Scottish and american people pronounce the "r" in words like "farther", some don't. The right new spelling would be a moot point.

jayles October 12, 2010, 8:28pm

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@ Shaun C - from Oct 6.

We cannot agree on spelling between American and British dialects because we pronounce things differently.

British - American
/both/ - /bæth/
/mili-tree/ - /mili-tehr-ee
/æloo-mi-nee-um/ - /uh-loo-mi-num/

In my History of the Spanish Language class, my professor explained to us that in the early Middle Ages, Spanish, French, Italian, and Portuguese all sounded different, but yet they wrote in what we call LATIN. They would look at the SAME THIING and say it completely different... The example sentence he used was...
Video hominem in ecclesia.
They all wrote like this, but they all SAID it differently
Spanish - Veo al hombre en la iglesia.
Itlaian - Vedo l'uomo nella chiesa.
French - etc
Portugues - etc

And just as some of you have pointed out, Americans, Scottish, and British peoples all spell mostly the same way (some exceptions are programme/program and colour/color, but those are minor problems).

So if the Scottish still say "nikht" then they can spell it night or nikht or nicht, whichever they prefer. And if Americans say "/nait/" then we can spell it "nite" or "nait".

If the Scots say "laughter" like "lahkter" then they can spell it "laughter/lahkter/" etc, and the British can spell "lahfter" and Americans can spell it "lafter".

If we dont' want our spelling to match the pronunciation, then our orthography will pretty much be a symbol-type system and we will be no better off than having to use Chinese symbols.

My girlfriend's 4 year old nephew's name is Kristian. For a school art-project, he spelled his name "Crish-chin" because that's how it is said. Very logical... but "wrong". However, no one says "Kris-tee-ahn". But everyone does say "Krish-chin"

When I was a kid, I remember spelling "police station" as "polees stayshun" [I still have that paper!]

I believe that FIXING our spelling... well... RULES of spelling will RAISE literacy or, at least, make it much easier to teach and learn how to spell.

If wi al rot (wrote) laik this, it wud bi beter. Ther wil bi NO sailint (silent) leterz as sin in "laughter". Thu werds "plough, through, rough, dough, trough, bought" wil be speld az "plau, thru, ruf, do/dou/dow, trahf, baht". Ai adid/ædid thi "H" bikuz thi "a" saund iz u bit diper than thi "A" in "father", but "traf" and "bat" wud bi ekseptibl.

Thu leter "C" wil bi kikt aut. Saft C wil bi speld with än S änd thu hard C wil bi speld with u K. For egzampl, "practice" wud bi speld "praktis" or "præktis" or "präktis". Ai hav nat disaidid (decided) wich leter tu yuz for thi "ash" saund. Sumtaims, ai laik yuzing "æ" and uthers, ai laik "ä". Yuzing ä iz similer tu thu Germin* ä in "mädchen" or watever that werd iz.

*(There will be a few soft G exceptions, along some other letters. Otherwise, soft G is spelled with a J as in "gem" = jem/jim.)

addyatg November 5, 2010, 3:24pm

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And to further demonstrate/PROVE his point, my professor wrote this sentence in English...

Night comes earlier each day.

We say /nait kumz er-li-er ich dei/ = nait kumz erlier ich dei (7 syllables)

But according to the spelling, it should be...
/nikht ko-mes e-ar-li-er e-ach dai/ = nikht komes earlier each dai (10 syllables)

So let's fix the dang spelling rules!

addyatg November 5, 2010, 3:31pm

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Consanguinity (consanguinuity) or Samebloodedness.

I see no reason to say either of them - other than pomposity.

By the way 'uncleftish springballs' are available at Tesco - buy one get one free - or as we say 'buy two'.

As for spelling - it doesn't matter - leave it as it is.

alan.amtco December 1, 2010, 10:01pm

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I simply think that it is an interesting linguistic exercise. There is certainly not such a thing as linguistic purity, but at the same time, English speakers have a much better idea of the senses of "overbringing" than "translating." We know the roots of the words much better: over and bring versus 'trans' 'latum.' We therefore know the word by its entire meaning and not by the meaning of its parts. I think we definitely lose something here.
Also, I think that this is a noteworthy cultural movement as well. Try using Anglisc. You might be surprised at how clear your speech suddenly seems.

ross.a.tieken December 16, 2010, 8:21am

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Yes this is indeed a noteworthy FOLKWAYS SHIFT ! I would however be somewhat taken aback if anglish unclouded your speech.

jayles December 17, 2010, 3:14am

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I think that the birth of Ænglisc again is good. Is there anything wrong with folks wanting to learn the old? Ænglisc (or English if you like) is, at its heart, a Germanic tongue, even though there has been outside bearing on Ænglisc speech by Latin and Greek. It can be shown true that some of the Norman words are from Old Norse, and are therefore French versions of the earlier Germanic. As for Ænglisc word-offerings for 'bomb', 'agglutination', and 'irony', how about: 1) bomb (Fr., from Gk. 'bombos): Bursting-Weapon (for 'Atom", why not use 'kernel' like in German- 'die Kernwaffe', which would beget 'Kernel-Bursting-Weapon'? 2) agglutination (L. from PIE *glei-): Clump or Lump (oddly, most Wordbooks use the Ænglisc to tell the meaning of this word. Isn't that weird?) 3) irony (L. from Gk. 'eironeia'): Why not use 'Tongue-in-Cheek'? Or, 'Weird'? Or, 'Silly'? There are many ways to say this one. It is true that early Ænglisc already had many Latin words like 'butter'. These early words belonged to early Ænglisc, and therefore belong to Ænglisc today. The main thought (or inkling) here is to teach, learn, and use words that are markedly Ænglisc. Truthfully, there is no need for loan-words. The Ænglisc wordpool is rich on its own. I believe I have shown that here with this bit of writing--all (or most) of which is in Ænglisc. What's more, it means nothing to say that words are borrowed from Old Norse, Old Frankish, Old Saxon, Old Frisian, Old High German, Old Dutch, and so on, while all of them are Germanic at their roots. What is wrong with wanting to use cleaner Ænglisc for writing and speaking? The thought that this means a fear of outsiders is CRAZY. By the way, 'Crazy' is one of those words that is a frenchified Germanic. It comes from Old Norse 'krasa' through Old French to Ænglisc. Did anyone get a headache reading all of this in Ænglisc? The only hitch to this whole Ænglisc thing is everyone would might be too wordy.

Ængelfolc February 28, 2011, 1:21am

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Oops, "versions" is French through Latin. What I meant was "...and are therefore, French words of the earlier Germanic." Version = Ænglisc 'kind'. My mistake!

Ængelfolc February 28, 2011, 1:28am

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By the way, 'Consanguinity' is better said in Ænglisc as 'blood-kinship'. There is no need for the Latin-French word 'consanguinuity' to give this thought meaning. "-ism" = belief in Ænglisc.

Ængelfolc February 28, 2011, 1:42am

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An earlier writer seems to say that Ænglisc is a rather low-brow tongue (folk-speech)--uncouth. Anyone who has read Beowulf understands this to be wrong. "Poet" in Anglo-Saxon was 'scop' (old Norse 'skald'), which now is found in the verb 'to scoff' in today's English. 'skald' is 'scold' in today's English. Why use poetry when we have the forgotten high-brow word 'scopfsang' that we can use again? Ænglisc is very couth and highly clever. All the old Ænglisc writers show that to be true.

Ængelfolc February 28, 2011, 2:22am

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@Paul Rodriguez says, " ...“mainly” are French." Sorry you are wrong! Main (n. or adj.) comes from mægen (n.) "power, strength, force," from P.Gmc. *maginam- "power". The suffix "-ly" is also from Ænglisc/ Germanic. Tokens are Anglo-Saxon "-lic" or"-lice", Old Norse "-liga" or "-ligr", German "-lich", Dutch "-lijk", ans so forth. The word "mainly" is not a "Romance" word at all. @Charles says, "accept it!! the english is now a romance language, like the french or spanish languages." Well, he is wrong, too. Only Francophiles and folk of that ilk say and believe such wrong-headed things. Ænglisc will always be Germanic at its roots. One can choose to use the Latin-French and Greek words, or one can knuckle-down and use the right Anglo-Saxon words to speak and write. The most used words in Ænglisc are Germanic, unless one is a Lawyer, an Alderman, a Healer, or a snooty sort of man overly burdened and most dizzy from too much "learning", which has darkened and hidden the truth from said 'learned man'.

Ængelfolc February 28, 2011, 4:19am

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Ængelfolc, in general I like the idea of anglish. However there are powerful forces working against its worldwide adoption. There are many areas such as medicine, computing, accounting, engineering, aeronautics, where English is the de facto world language. Most university textbooks for these subjects are written in English, and many students are using English as a second language to study them. Also within the academic world there is a propensity to choose romance words to conform to expected standards.
To enforce Anglish would be to change all the jargon words and muddy the waters.
We are not all etymologists... eg choose is good Anglish, but choice is not. What might be achieved is to change people's mindset toward simpler and less snobby english and less esoteric lexis withing academia. However some jargon eg in medicine is now so entrenched and vital that change is impracitcal IMHO>

jayles March 1, 2011, 6:32am

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jayles: Good thoughts all! You are right. World-wide use, however, should not be the goal. Also you are right about 'choose' and 'choice'...there is a lot of that in English. French does have Frankish in the background somewhere, so some word follow a Germanic--> French --> then back to Germanic trend. It will never again be all Germanic, but English can be mostly made up of mostly Germanic speech again. We should choose English words for most of our speaking. Almost all tongues (even French, despite the Toubon law) are having outside words come in to them. Folks have to want to, and choose to, speak a cleaner English at home. A shift will take a lot of time. A small ripple will wallow over the whole of the sea. Everything starts small. Long live Germanic English.

Ængelfolc March 1, 2011, 9:19pm

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Ængelfolc! Good. Would you accept a little challenge for you for homework? If so, pls post your comments in Anglish on one of the following topics (100 words max): 1) soil liquefaction or 2) pneumoconiosis. Both these items have been in the news.

jayles March 2, 2011, 1:50am

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Not only should yall write a 100 word paragraph on "soil liquefaction" and "pneumoconiosis", but yall should also add them to the Anglish Wikipedia.

If I could write in Anglish, I honestly would spend my freetime translating articles into Anglish.

addyatg March 2, 2011, 2:57am

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I must admit that Anglish would make medical definitions somewhat redundant. Once we call pneumoconiosis "breathingindustdisease" it's pretty obvious what it means, unless of course your greek is good anyway. "Soilflow" sounds good but isn't really specific enough to pinpoint the precise phenomenon.

jayles March 2, 2011, 3:36am

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well im sure we could be a little more becraftsome than breathingindustdisease. How about lungdustcothe (cothe from OE coðu, disease). or how about dustethemcothe (OE aéthm OE breath, air). Granted cothe and ethem are just as undersatndable to english speakers than pneumowhatever, but at for those of you anglishers that are looking to edstathel some good old Anglo-Saxon, there are plenty of options. It just goes to show we truly did not need greek or latin or french. it amazes me you know, having studied Anglo-saxon for so long now I can truly say that in my mind it is far oversome(superior) to what we have today. So many poor loreknights (students) of english loaded on with the misbelief that english was bettered by its borrowings. English already had so much, it did not need in any way, foreign influence. And what a load of bullshit it is when it is claimed that english was enriched by its borrowings-- english lost so much of its wordstock, for what was gained an evenworthed muchth was lost. The Anglish Moot now has an Old English Wordbook where OE words are updated into now-time english. It's definitely worth looking at.

Long live Anglish. i swear i will die speaking and writing it.

wylan138 March 2, 2011, 6:45am

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"Wet-earth Melting"(aka soil liquefaction): The way in which earth that is too wet starts to behave like water. Wet-earth Melting is a wondrous happening in which the strength and stiffness of dirt is made weaker by earthquakes, shaking, or quick loading. Wet-earth Melting and like happenings have been guilty of bringing about great loss in well-known earthquakes around the world. Wet-Earth Melting happens in spots of ground that are overly wet, that is, ground in which the room between lone motes is thoroughly filled with water. This water brings weight to bear upon the dirt motes which then sways how tightly the motes themselves are squeezed together. Earthquake shaking often triggers this waxing water-weight, but building work such as blasting can also bring about a rise in water-weight. Molten Wet-earth also bears greater weight on holding walls, which can bring them to tilting or sliding. Begotten from:

Ængelfolc March 2, 2011, 10:12pm

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"Dustbreathing Sickness"(pneumoconiosis) or "Dust-Lungs": any of the many lifelong lasting lung sicknesses brought on by the breathing-in of all kinds of dust motes.

In German it is called "Staublunge" (dust lungs). Why can't we use the same words? It doesn't have to be so muddled. Anyone think about "Black Lung"?? It is a "Dustbreathing Sickness or a pneumoconiosis illness. I can write about this in 100 words, too.

Ængelfolc March 2, 2011, 10:42pm

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Ængelfolc! I award you A- ! That was surprisingly intelligible. It certainly shows what could be done if academics were willing. It does however highlight the difficulty of settling on new terminology and labels that everyone understands and uses.
One word that I do detest is "disambiguation" which is often used by wikipedia.

"Damn I must have left my rainshield on the coach." said Harald (circa 1066)

jayles March 3, 2011, 12:52am

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Thanks, jayles! What did I get an A- for? Dust-Lungs or Wet-earth Melting? My use of Ænglisc? Both bits were dead-on, no? You are right, making new words everyone can use and understand could be woeful! Folks would have to learn new words like "mote", and learn words like "lone" (and its many uses) again. But, it CAN be done.

Wordtrending (disambiguation): 1) a sorting out of the way in which a writer uses a word, that has many meanings or spellings, for his own ends. 2) to make a lone, well-shaped meaning for a word which has many uses. 3) to use the meaning of a word that does not hinder understanding.

Token1: I do not get your meaning? Could you choose another wordtrend to make me understand better?

Would we need to (disambiguate) any thought using mostly Ænglisc anyway? I think not.

Ængelfolc March 3, 2011, 8:13am

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Ænglisc: I would have given you an A but 1) melting suggests a change in temperature as the cause, which is not the case with soil liquefaction; and 2) IMHO we can sway people, but for an inanimate process it seems less than perfect as a substitute for influence, although I am hard put to come up with anything better.
“Damn I must have left my rainshield on the coach.” : Harald's last words before he glanced up at the gathering rainclouds and copped an arrow in the eye, and so died Old English. But what is a rainshield?
Seriously though, the whole premise of anglish is that saxon words are better, Why?
Romance words do not denote snobbery or social status in France, or Spain or Romania.
Only in England.

jayles March 3, 2011, 9:35am

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foreign words are snobby forwhy they make no sense. They are made up of foreign roots, roots that are not understood by engish speakers. Their inly up-build is therefore misted over. One real downside to foreign words is when you come upon a new one you cannot draw off its meaning without a wordbook, unless you know latin or greek. Foreign words really get to me forwhy they do not say what they mean. Ornithology is the study of birds and yet the word bird is no where found in the word "ornithology". It is therfore deceptive and snobby, like wtf is ornithology, speak english, fuck. The word birdlore, the lore (from "learn") of birds , is much clearer, much more wordbirthlorely throughlooksome (etymologically transparent). Lawcraft, is much clearer, much more homey-sounding than juriprudence. Foreshut is much more image-evoking then preclude. So much of our language is foreing to us, we do not own it. Wtf is ''ceive"'in deceive, conceive, receive, perceive. Wtf is "tain" in contain, retain, detain. To english speakers, these words don't really have an inly upbuild, they are just arbitrary speakly tokens for ideas. They lack metaphor, image-evokingness, found in inhold for contain, athold for retain, downhold for detain. Anglish words are truer, they say what they mean. There is truth is Anglish, there is falsehood in foreign english, which is why it is the language of politicians and snobs.

wylan138 March 3, 2011, 2:06pm

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jayles: Thanks for your input. You have given but one of today's meanings for 'melting'. It is a useful word!

melt (mlt)
v. melt·ed, melt·ing, melts
1. To be changed from a solid to a liquid state especially by the application of heat.
2. To dissolve: Sugar melts in water.
3. To disappear or vanish gradually as if by dissolving: The crowd melted away after the rally.
4. To pass or merge imperceptibly into something else: Sea melted into sky along the horizon.
5. To become softened in feeling: Our hearts melted at the child's tears.
6. Obsolete To be overcome or crushed, as by grief, dismay, or fear.
1. To change (a solid) to a liquid state especially by the application of heat.
2. To dissolve: The tide melted our sand castle away.
3. To cause to disappear gradually; disperse.
4. To cause (units) to blend: "Here individuals of all races are melted into a new race of men" (Michel Guillaume Jean de Crèvecoeur).
5. To soften (someone's feelings); make gentle or tender.
1. A melted solid; a fused mass.
2. The state of being melted.
a. The act or operation of melting.
b. The quantity melted at a single operation or in one period.
4. A usually open sandwich topped with melted cheese: a tuna melt.
[Middle English melten, from Old English meltan; see mel-1 in Indo-European roots.]
melta·bili·ty n.
melta·ble adj.
melter n.
melting·ly adv.
melty adj.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition copyright ©2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Updated in 2009. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

So, you see, it spot-on for what I wrote about. The same is true for 'sway':

sway (sw)
v. swayed, sway·ing, sways
1. To swing back and forth or to and fro. See Synonyms at swing.
2. To incline or bend to one side; veer: She swayed and put out a hand to steady herself.
a. To incline toward change, as in opinion or feeling.
b. To fluctuate, as in outlook.
1. To cause to swing back and forth or to and fro.
2. To cause to incline or bend to one side.
3. Nautical To hoist (a mast or yard) into position.
a. To divert; deflect.
b. To exert influence on or control over: His speech swayed the voters.
5. Archaic
a. To rule or govern.
b. To wield, as a weapon or scepter.
1. The act of moving from side to side with a swinging motion.
2. Power; influence.
3. Dominion or control.
[Middle English sweien, probably of Scandinavian origin.]
swayer n.
swaying·ly adv.

One could say 'clout', 'might', 'reach', 'win over', 'work on', 'stir' (emotion), 'upper hand', and so on, to mean 'sway'. 'Sway' means the same thing as 'influence', whether the thought be about things alive or dead.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition copyright ©2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Updated in 2009. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

Ængelfolc March 3, 2011, 6:37pm

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@jayles: "... the whole premise of anglish is that saxon words are better, Why?
Romance words do not denote snobbery or social status in France, or Spain or Romania.
Only in England."

Firstly, let me say, it is not only in England that romance words seem to tell breeding or standing. It is in the U.S., too. Secondly, Ænglisc (Germanic) words are not better, they rightly belong above all other words. Jm wrote a truth: "Anglish words are truer, they say what they mean." Think about French, Greek, Latin, and any other tongue that has made it into English. Why are they used? Why are these tongues thought of as greater than Ænglisc? Why are folks seen as 'smarter' when they speak them? Why forget our roots where ever they may be from? Why should Ænglisc end up like Norn, Gothic, or Yola?A borrowing here or there is not an evil thing, it will happen when two unalike folks get together. It is right and true for Ænglisc folks everywhere (England, the U.S., a.s.f.) to take care of their birthright. Folks need to know where they come from. The Ænglisc folks and their tongue are worthy of awe, just like any other.

Ængelfolc March 3, 2011, 7:19pm

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Ængelfolc: as a descendant of the illegitimate son of and Norman lord and a welsh wench, I think my birthright would lie elsewhere than Anglish, I would suggest you check your own antecedents back over the last thousand years in case you too have some smidgen of Norman or Romance blood.
I gave you A- because it was (to my surprise) intelligible. However this style of writing would of course fail at university entrance because it is not "academic" enough. There is a list of acceptable academic words which you will find in TOEFL and IELTS courses.This is where the rot starts.
"influence" ranks among the most common three thousand words in modern English,(off the cuff). Substituting other words makes the passage less easily comprehended. Although the writing may be better wrought, as a means of communicating ideas it is less effective.
After years of latin at school, and despite years of German too, "soil liquefaction" is still for me much easier for me to understand than your alternatives.
Perhaps we should all use Hungarian instead?

jayles March 4, 2011, 12:50am

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Thank you for the comments, jayles: Ænglisc, as described here, may not be for you. It is not for everyone. As I said earlier, it is not for World-wide distribution. Perhaps you are at home with all of the French influence. Good for you. A lot of Norman-French words are of Germanic origin,and were reintroduced into English, as I am sure you are aware. The Welsh are trying to revive Cymraeg, why shouldn't the English try to do the same for their language? It is called, after all, England, not "Norfrenlatengwelscotland". Recall that Normans are culturally Germanic as well as by blood, but spoke Normaund (Scandinavian-Latin-French). They are a mixture of Scandinavians, Hiberno-Norse, Orcadians, Anglo-Danish, and indigenous Franks and Gauls. 1000 years ago the Normans were in Normandy expanding west and pushing out the Bretons.

What do you mean the language is not academic enough? University disapproves? Who cares about the status quo? Do you think that anyone is advocating for an immediate switch? That would be ridiculous, as well as, impractical. The influences happened over time, so the reversals could happen over time, too. "Wet-earth Melting" is an off-the-cuff attempt at creating an equivalency for "soil liquefaction". If you understand German, do you understand Bodenverflüssigung? Break this word down in to its parts, and you should be able to construct the Ænglisc version. No doubt there is a lot of developing to do. There is 945 years of damage to reverse! For you, "soil liquefaction" is more understandable because that is what you are probably used to. That is expected, and okay. The same goes for any of the other Anglo words you find difficult. You are simply not used to them being used in ways other than how you were taught to use them. That is why you have the impression that ideas are not communicated as well as the mongrel English of today. That simply is not true or accurate said in any language. Your understanding of "melting" is a great example, and neatly proves the point of Ænglisc supporters.

Modern English speakers have lost much of the original language by allowing so-called "academics" to tell them which word are acceptable, and which are not. Why do you think we do not use a case system anymore? "Academics". Why is our spelling screwed up? "Academics". Why can most modern English speakers not understand the English of Chaucer or Shakespeare? "Academics". People's inability to read, write, and understand proper English is a failure of Academia at large (or Acadème, if you prefer). Appealing to authority is never the sign of a strong argument. Google/Harvard Study of the Current Number of Words in the English Language is 1,022,000 (OED estimates about 750,000). Either way, are this many words necessary to be precise? To effectively communicate? Useful? No. Muddling to most native and 2nd language speakers.

As for your challenge, I more than surpassed your 'expectations'. I wrote more than 100 words and presented the idea of soil liquefaction as clearly and defined as if it had been written in mongrel English. I can do it all day long, with any topic. Of course, it will sound weird because there is, as of yet, no generally accepted terms in Anglo-Saxon for some modern concepts. Alas, it doesn't matter anyway. Moving on, I also successfully defined disambiguation and pneumoconiosis without any problem. Keep in mind, that had 1066 gone differently, we would have true English words for these ideas, just like the Germans. In German one can use the snooty sounding "Pneumokoniose" or the colloquial Germanic "Staublunge". Surely, English can be this way, too. As for me, my native languages are German and English (although I speak six fluently, at the moment). No Welsh, Picts, Brits, French, Spanish, Basques, or Hibernians in my tree.

Ha szeretné megváltoztatni az egész sziget Anglia a magyar beszél?k, hogy biztos lenne lehetetlen feladat! A magyar nyelv nem áll kapcsolatban a latin, kelta, germán nyelvek vagy egyébként. Azt akarod mondani, hogy angolszász nem érdemes megmenteni?

Those interested in protecting culture and history will secure Anglo-Saxon Ænglisc, and perhaps restore it to its rightful glory. Everybody else will be happy speaking Global-English (which should not be called English) just to get along.

Thanks again for the feedback.

Ængelfolc March 4, 2011, 5:22am

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A great read for anyone interested in how the Norman Conquest affected the English language.

Ængelfolc March 4, 2011, 5:35am

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Ængelfolc: Ne haragudj! Ne sertodj meg. Nem akartalak zavarni. Ne felecs el, hogy eleinte azt mondtam, hogy teszik nekem az Anglish. Egyetertunk, hogy az akademiakban, es az egyetemeken all a problema. Nekem tetszik a magyar, ez altalaban sokkal konnyebb, ( miutan megszoktak.) De persze viccelodtem a magyarhelyetitesrol. Udv

jayles March 4, 2011, 5:43am

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jayles: No, man! Its cool. I simply want encourage people to use English, not Global-speak, in traditionally English-speaking countries like England and the U.S. English, even as we know it, can become extinct by completely transforming into "Globelish", if care is not taken.

Academia, of course, is one of the biggest accomplices to that. For example, how many people do you think believe that "soup" is a French word? A Latin word? It's neither. It is a Germanic word. It is derived from P.Gmc *saupan, *saupaz. How about "soil"? Sounds French. It's not. "Soil" comes from Frankish *sulljan, *sauljan and OE solian, sylian. Okay, "regret". Now that's of French origin! Nope. It is a Germanic word, too (with the exception of the "re-" part, which is borrowed from Latin, but of unknown origin). "Regret" is from Frankish *grêtan, grêotan (to cry, weep, mourn, or lament), which is ultimately from P.Gmc. *greutanan (derived from PIE *ghrew- "to weep or be sad"). See my point? This knowledge is lost to average folks. This type of ignorance allows people to believe the propaganda about the English language.

Anyway, I digress. Good show, jayles! I appreciate the debate.

Ængelfolc March 4, 2011, 7:48pm

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Ængelfolc: I absolutely agree; knowing what is really English is a major issue; but of course the first task would be to get the average person interested. I wonder whether facebook and hotmail etc would consider adding Anglish as a species of English? Or whether a spellchecker-type Anglish highlighter would be feasible. Secondly you would have to consider carefully which words to target. Words such a government are in the top 3000 usage. How many borrowings would you allow from Norman french (which I submit IS part of our heritage). I would miss words like baliff, castle etc.
It is the renaissance wave of direct borrowings from latin that sound so pompous.
Your intent and endeavours are praiseworthy, albeit I do wonder whether you will see them as worthwhile in the eventide of your life. Sok szerencset kivanok!

jayles March 4, 2011, 9:31pm

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jayles: I do not propose to remove all foreign words. Words like "street" (L. stratta) were introduced so long ago that they are considered, by most, as belonging to English-proper. I will argue that Norman-French is part of the legislative culture of England, but almost certainly not of its people. Norman burial traditions, for example, are considered as part of the Anglo-Scandinavian tradition. What's more, the Normaund (Norman-French) language influenced legal language, but not much else. I could live without 'bailiff'-- we have 'sheriff' (O.E. scirgerefa) and 'reeve' (O.E. gerefa) among other options. If England decided to return to its pre-1066 nomenclature, that would effective solve it. Academia should teach the borrowed word and the English word side-by-side, and allow the student to choose the proper word for, what he/she feels, is the proper context. The average person, to be interested, would have to not be afraid to have pride in his/her cultural roots.

Thanks for the well-wishes, but luck is for the ill-prepared! Cheers!

Ængelfolc March 4, 2011, 10:42pm

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We do try to teach "made up of" along with "consist of", but inevitably romance language speakers just choose the romance option. For the others the romance option is often less error-prone. Le mot juste is beyond them. They just want to pass the exam and get into uni.

jayles March 4, 2011, 11:50pm

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jayles: What do you mean by "inevitably romance language speakers just choose the romance option. For the others the romance option is often less error-prone."

More "French words" of Germanic origin:
* boulevard (from M.Du. bolwerc "wall of a fortification")
* mannequin (from Du. manneken). This word already existed in the 1560's, while the French version came about in 1902.
* afraid (from L. ex + Frankish *frithu "peace," from P.Gmc. *frithuz "peace, consideration, forbearance"; O.E. friðu)
* war (from Frankish *werra)
* standard ( from Frankish *standhard)
* scavenger (from O.H.G. scouwon, O.E. sceawian)
* baron ( from Frankish baro; merged with cog. O.E. beorn)
* skirmish (from O.H.G. skirmen or Frankish *skirmjan)
* attack (from a + Frank. *stakon. see O.E. staca, from P.Gmc. *stakon)
* regard, reward (from re + Frankish *wardon, from P.Gmc. *wardo-)
* crush (from from Frankish *krostjan)
* herald (from from Frankish *hariwald, from P.Gmc. *kharjaz)

Check twice, if you think, or more importantly someone (especially in Academia) tells you, a word in English is borrowed from French.

Ængelfolc March 5, 2011, 8:11am

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Based on the evidence of the Oxford English Corpus, which currently contains over 2 billion words, the 100 commonest English words found in writing around the world are as follows:

1 the
2 be
3 to
4 of
5 and
6 a
7 in
8 that
9 have
10 I
11 it
12 for
13 not
14 on
15 with
16 he
17 as
18 you
19 do
20 at
21 this
22 but
23 his
24 by
25 from
26 they
27 we
28 say
29 her
30 she
31 or
32 an
33 will
34 my
35 one
36 all
37 would
38 there
39 their
40 what
41 so
42 up
43 out
44 if
45 about
46 who
47 get
48 which
49 go
50 me
51 when
52 make
53 can
54 like
55 time
56 no
57 just
58 him
59 know
60 take
61 people* (O.Fr. peupel, from L. populus, unknown origin, possibly from Etruscan)
62 into
63 year
64 your
65 good
66 some
67 could
68 them
69 see
70 other
71 than
72 then
73 now
74 look
75 only
76 come
77 its
78 over
79 think
80 also
81 back
82 after
83 use* (from Vulgar L. *usare)
84 two
85 how
86 our
87 work
88 first
89 well
90 way
91 even
92 new
93 want
94 because* (OE. "by" + L. causa; modeled on Fr. 'par cause')
95 any
96 these
97 give
98 day
99 most
100 us

3 out of 100 are non-Germanic (3%). 97 out of 100 are Germanic (97%).

Ængelfolc March 5, 2011, 8:54am

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Most common 'content words' in ranking order from the Oxford English Corpus:

1 time
2 person* (from L. *persona)
3 year
4 way
5 day
6 thing
7 man
8 world
9 life
10 hand
11 part* (from L. *partem)
12 child
13 eye
14 woman
15 place* (ultimately from Gk. *plateia)
16 work
17 week
18 case* (from L. capsa "receptacle"; from L. casus "state of affairs")
19 point* (ultimately from L. *pungere)
20 government* (from Gk. kybernan + L. stem -mentum)

21 company* (from L.L. companionem. Found first in 6c. Frankish Lex Salica, and probably a translation of a Germanic word (cf. Gothic gahlaiba))

22 number* (from L. *numerus)

23 group (actually a Germanic word from P.Gmc. *kruppaz)

24 problem* (from Gk. *proballein)
25 fact* (from L. *factum)

1 be
2 have
3 do
4 say
5 get
6 make
7 go
8 know
9 take
10 see
11 come
12 think
13 look
14 want
15 give
16 use* (from Vulgar L. *usare)
17 find
18 tell
19 ask
20 work
21 seem
22 feel
23 try
24 leave
25 call

1 good
2 new
3 first
4 last
5 long
6 great
7 little
8 own
9 other
10 old
11 right
12 big
13 high
14 different* (from L. *differentem)
15 small
16 large* (from L. largus)
17 next
18 early
19 young
20 important* (from L. *importare)
21 few
22 public* (from Old L. *poplicus)
23 bad
24 same
25 able* (from L. *habilem, habilis)

16 out of 75 words (21%) are of non-Germanic origin. 59 out of 75 (79%) are of Germanic origin. **I am counting company as a non-Germanic word, even though the ultimate origin is in question given the Frankish reference.

Ængelfolc March 5, 2011, 9:35am

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Ængelfolc: These people are often not linguists as such. They may be, for example, an immigrant pharmacist, who needs a minimum of IELTS 7.0 to work professionally. Or they may be budding engineers, IT people, teachers etc. who wish to enter university and therefore need pass an English test. Some people are just not good at learning a second language. Of course romance speakers' first choice is familiar lexis: so a french speaker might say: May I propose a cup of coffee? Most non germanic speakers find the grammar of phrasal verbs like "made up of" incomprehensible and avoid them. In the limited time available it's more effective to focus on "academic" words to get them through the exam. It's just business sense.
If you look in the Longmans (advanced) dictionary for English learners, the top 3000 words are marked in red, and there are markers like W1,S2 to indicate more detail.

jayles March 5, 2011, 6:53pm

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Ængelfolc: if you seek real pain in the english, take a look at "academic word list" on Wikipedia and follow the links. It is enthralling stuff, but shows what you are up against.

jayles March 6, 2011, 1:36am

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jayles: It would be a "Pain in the English" to attempt to convert foreign, non-English speakers because of the "Globalish" already being taught to them. I am setting my sights a lot lower. Words from mathematics should stay. Although, a lot of the Latin-Greek "science words" could be replaced.

The Old English lexis for arts, sciences, and literature fell out of favor because it fell into disuse. Very simply, the bourgeoisie wanted to be taken as a more noble and refined people--so they adopted more "Latin-French" words. The became embarrassed by Ænglish believing the snobby hype that it was VULGAR. The fix? Start proudly rediscovering and using the higher-register OE words!

"Old English was extremely resourceful in its ability to express synonyms and shades of meaning on its own, in many respects rivaling or exceeding that of Modern English (synonyms numbering in the thirties for certain concepts were not uncommon). Take for instance the various ways to express the word "astronomer" or "astrologer" in Old English: tunglere, tungolcræftiga, tungolwītega, tīdymbwlātend, tīdscēawere."

Recommended Reading: "Politics and the English Language" (1946) by George Orwell

More Latin-French words that are surprisingly Germanic at their roots:

* allegiance (from O.E. læt)
* Feudal (from Goth. *faihu, O.H.G. *fihu)
* Fee (from Frank. *fehu-od--same Germanic root as Feudal)
* furniture, per+form+ance ( both from W.Gmc. *frumjan <= P.Gmc. *fram-)
* gallantry (from Frankish *wala- <= P.Gmc. *wal-)
* bourgeoisie (spelling and pronunciation screwed up by the French, but from Frankish *burg <= P.Gmc. *burgs)
* wardrobe (from W.Gmc. *wardo + W.Gmc. *rauba)

More later....Enjoy!

Ængelfolc March 6, 2011, 11:01pm

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If you haven't already done so try:

jayles March 7, 2011, 11:19pm

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Thanks, jayles! Good recommendation!

More Germanic=> Latin/ French => English (Germanic) Words. Enjoy!:

abandon (from P.Gmc. *bannan through Frankish, which was heavily borrowed into French and Latin.)
acre (O.E. æcer, from P.Gmc. *akraz)
aboard (from à + Frankish *bord)

bacon (from P.Gmc. *bakkon through Low Frankish *bakko)
baggage (from O.N. baggi)
ballast-er (from P.Gmc. *bazaz + P.Gmc. *laistijanan. Or from North Sea Germanic and Scandinavian (cf. O.Dan. barlast, 14c.)
bank (from P.Gmc. *bangkon, a cognate with *bankiz)
bastion (from Frankish *bastjan)
bivouac (from Swiss/Alsatian biwacht, "beiwacht")

Camembert (from W.Gmc. *kampo-z, an early loan from L. 'campus' + W.Gmc. p.n. "Maimbert")
canard (from P.Gmc *kanan)
chic (from M.L.G. schikken or M.H.G. schicken)
crochet, croquet (from O.N. krokr )

equip (from P.Gmc. *skipan through O.N. *skipa)
etiquette (from Frank. *stikkan)
engage, gage (from P.Gmc. *wadi- through Frankish *wadja-, common evolution of Gmc. -w- to Fr. -g-)

flatter (from Frankish *flat)

gain (from Frankish *waidanjan, Gmc. -w- to Fr. -g-)
guide (from Frankish *witan, Gmc. -w- to Fr. -g-)
guise (from Frankish *wisa, Gmc. -w- to Fr. -g-)

haggard (from P.Gmc. *khag- through M.H.G. 'hag')
harness (from O.N. *hernest)

maraud, marauder (from Frankish *marrjan)

placard (from M.Du. placken)

Ængelfolc March 8, 2011, 5:43pm

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What Old English prefixes would Anglish the word: embower...

embower [ɪmˈbaʊə]
vb Archaic to enclose in or as in a bower

1. Enclosed or sheltered in or as if in a bower; 'a house embowered with blooms'
2. Being sheltered

Prefixes en-/em- to make into, to put into, to get into: enmesh, empower

Stanmund March 9, 2011, 5:18am

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The prefix "em-" is French, which derived from O.Fr. "en-", and is ultimately from L. "in-" (Gk. cognate is "en-"). A W.Saxon prefix that means the same thing is "on-" (cf. O.E. onliehtan "to enlighten"). The O.E. prefix "an-" is a variant of "on-", too.

BOWER is from O.E. *bur, which is from P.Gmc. *buraz. So, "onbower" or "anbower" would be equivalent to "embower".

Ængelfolc March 9, 2011, 9:35am

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Yes     No