Last weekend marked the anniversary of the birth of William Shakespeare in 1564, so today we thought we’d share a whimsical video from the BBC. It looks at a few of the popular misconceptions about British and American English and reveals some words which are as at home in the plays of Shakespeare as in US usage. Here’s the description from the BBC website:
“Why US English is a history lesson for the British.
Long before Jamestown or the Pilgrim Fathers landed at Massachusetts in 1620, the US English style of spelling words such as ‘honor’, ‘color’, and ‘center’ was alive and well in British English. Etymologist and broadcaster Susie Dent opens an ‘aluminium’ can of worms and teaches Brits a thing or two about their shared linguistic heritage. ”
Writing this blog together from both sides of the Atlantic, we spend a lot of time thinking about which words we have in common and which divide us, so it’s fascinating to learn about the surprising history of our shared language. Enjoy!
Sam and Claire