Learn to Speak English - English Language & Software Overview

Whether you are in an airport in Ankara, a train in Transylvania, a hotel in Honduras, at a restaurant in Togo or at a business meeting in Burma, there is a good chance that you will hear English spoken at some point.

English has become the unofficial language of the world community and the principal language of the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. It is also the official language of many countries in Africa and the Caribbean, and of islands in the Indian, Atlantic and Pacific oceans. And it is considered an “associate official language” of India.

There are, of course, many differences in accent and vocabulary in the many versions of the language, but they are rarely so extreme that people cannot understand one another. A New Zealander can communicate with a Canadian just as well as a Scot can speak with a Kenyan.

The history of English began around the fifth century A.D. when Germanic tribes invaded Britain—then inhabited by Celts and still part of the Roman Empire. The Germanic influence proved so great that there were but few traces of Celtic or Latin left in the language in the main part of the country. Some border areas, however, managed to hold onto their Celtic languages (such as Welsh inCornwall and Wales, and Gaelic in Ireland and the Scottish Highlands).

Then came the Vikings with their Norse language, followed in 1066 by Norman French, which remained the language of the nobility for two centuries after the conquest. This one event had an enormous effect on the language, causing it to almost double in size, as thousands of new words were introduced.

English still has many synonyms that are the result of two languages being used side by side by the Saxon peasants and their Norman masters. The most obvious are the names of meat-producing animals (cow, calf, sheep, swine), which are Germanic, whereas the dishes on the table (beef, veal, mutton, pork) are French.

Despite all of these influences, the heart of the language remained Anglo-Saxon. By the time of Chaucer (14th century), English had emerged as the literary standard and the language of the law and school instruction. Settlers from Britain took their language to America, where it began developing its own personality—sometimes remaining unchanged while British English moved on, sometimes taking an entirely new direction.

Although both are mutually intelligible, there are marked differences between British and American English, not only in accent and vocabulary, but also in grammatical structure and spelling. Here are just a few examples:


British English

American English


I’ve got no money

have no money

got is used as a part of the verb to have

have already eaten

I already ate

The Perfect tense is used more in British English

The theatre in the centre accepts cheques

The theater in the center accepts checks

Different spelling

The bonnet and the boot of the car…

The hood and trunk of the car…

Different vocabulary




(/garr –idge/)





Different pronunciation


  • Golden Gate Bridge
  • American Landscape
  • The Empire State Building
  • Mardi Gras, New Orleans
  • Wheat Fields in the Midwest
  • The Statue of Liberty, New York

Some general notes on English:

English uses the Latin alphabet with no additional letters.

Pronunciation is often hard to figure out, since the same letter combinations may have wildly different pronunciations.

Nouns in English have no grammatical gender. Unlike its cousin, German, English has no case system.

Verb conjugation is extremely simple in English, with verb tenses and modes generally expressed through helping verbs, rather than through verb endings and stem changes.

Word order follows the model of Subject-Verb-Object.

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