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ESL forum > > The state of the English language    

The state of the English language


The state of the English language
I read this last week and thought it īd be nice to share it with other English language fans:
 Let īs face it, English is a crazy language. There is no egg in eggplant nor ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in pineapple. English muffins weren īt invented in England or French fries in France. Sweetmeats are candies while sweetbreads, which aren īt sweet, are meat. We take English for granted. But if we explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.
And why is it that writers write but fingers don īt fing, grocers don īt groce and hammers don īt ham? If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn īt the plural of booth beeth? One goose, 2 geese. So one moose, 2 meese.If teachers taught, why didn īt preachers praught? If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat? In what language do people recite at a play and play at a recital? Ship by truck and send cargo by ship? Have noses that run and feet that smell? Park on driveways and drive on parkways? How can a "slim chance" and a "fat chance" be the same, while a "wise man" and "wise guy" are opposites? You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out and in which an alarm clock goes off by going on. When the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are invisible. And why, when I wind up my watch, I start it, but when I wind up this essay, I end it? Now I know why I flunked my English. It īs not my fault, the silly language doesn īt quite know whether it īs coming or going.

5 Apr 2016      


Haha I just love it! Thank you ever so much for sharing this lovely text with us!
I think I īll incorporate it in a test!
Have a nice day! Abigail.

5 Apr 2016     

United States

Richard Lederer, author of Crazy English (from which this quote comes), is a total genius! I love all his books, but this is my favorite!

5 Apr 2016