English as a world language
English is one of the most widespread languages in the world. As for the number of people speaking English it is the most used language. It´s the mother tongue for inhabitants of the following countries: The USA, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand. Then there is a great number of countries where English is spoken as the second language e.g. some African countries (The Republic of South Africa) and some Asian countries (India). Generally speaking, English is spoken in The USA, Ireland and in the Commonwealth countries. The Commonwealth is a voluntary assotiation of Britain and her former colonies. It developed in the first half of 20th century when Britain gave self-goverment to her dominions. Founding members were: Britain, Canada, Newfoudland, Australia and New Zealand. Later the Commonwealth included many African, Asian, South American and Caribbean nations. Member countries co-operate to encourage world peace, social understanding, racial equality and economic development. The Queen of England is the formal head in many member states-dominions (in Canada, Australia, New Zealand).
English is not only native language for many people in the world but also it´s used for practical purposes in various branches in human activity e.g. business, technology, aviation or sports.
The first people who settled Great Britain were the Celts. Germanic inhabitants (Germanic tribes) the Jutes, the Angles, the Saxons forced the Celts to leave England and settle Scotland and Wales.
The English language is of Germanic origin. Old English had many inflections to show various grammar forms e.g. singular, plural, tense, person. The pronunciation was different as well bit over centuries words have been simplified and in fact have few inflections now. On the other hand pronunciation and spelling became more difficult. Many words can be used as different parts of speech – kiss, smile,
Modern English with analytic grammar has developed from Anglo-Saxon an important event that influenced the language was the Battle of Hastings in 1066. Here William Conqueror defeated the original inhabitants. Then many Normen came to England that are French origin (castle, garage, fashion, prince). But English has borrowed words from many other languages too e.g. Spanish, Latin. It is obvious that other languages are influenced by the English vocabulary.
There are 5 main types of English that differ in pronunciation, spelling and vocabulary but the differences are not so crucial that they could avoid understanding. They are: British English, American English, Australian English, Indian English and African English.
Great Britain is the official name for the Union of England, Scotland and Wales. The name used for Britain and Northen Ireland is a United Kingdom. The United Kingdom together with Canada, Australia, New Zealand and some other territories is called the British Commonwealth of Nations. The majority of inhabitants of Great Britain speak English. But only the English, it means the inhabitants of England, are of Germanic origin while the Welsh and Scots are of Celtic origin. In spide of these differences in the origin of British nations, most inhabitants, especially those living outside UK, say they are British.