Re: [OT] English language [was:Re: OpenOffice.org - how to install additional languages?]
On 04/03/2011 02:54 PM, David Jardine wrote:
On Sun, Apr 03, 2011 at 03:08:55PM -0400, Doug wrote:
This is grossly off topic, but since it's here, i _must_ answer:
Thank God there is no "English Academy."
As a native English speaker I entirely agree, but I can understand the
frustrations of others who are effectively forced to use our language as
a lingua franca and cannot find a single, stable definition of it.
Kinda like Spanish...
In France, their Academy
has the force and power
of law. It is _illegal_ to name anything public in English. If you
have a store and call it by an English
name you will be forced to change it to something French. The only
exception I have heard of
is "Le Drugstore." I don't know how they get away with it.
What populist propaganda have you been reading? How do they say
"Disneyland" in French?
Terre de Disney?
Terre de Souris?
If English, either British or American, had such an academy, we
would still be speaking the
language of Henry VIII! And we would never have had the opportunity
to get rid of the French
spelling of things like "centre."
... or "table" ? Come on! A nationalistic dictionary compiler (anti-
Webster completed his /American Dictionary/ while at U. Cambridge.
Would an anti-Brit really go to England to do his work?
rather than anti-French) caught the mood of the times and you all
lapped it up.
That can only happen when there's no canon. spelling is in flux.
I don't know if England had its own xenophobic equivalents,
but I think the English would be less likely to accept changes of spelling
decreed from above.
Above? Webster didn't get his dictionary mandated by the government.
Anyway, two words: Samuel Johnson.
The French may hate everything English, but those of us who speak
any variety of English
appreciate its variety, and we wouldn't have it any other way.
But is it _our_ language any more?
Not after you beggared yourself after the two World Wars.
"Neither the wisest constitution nor the wisest laws will secure
the liberty and happiness of a people whose manners are universally
Samuel Adams, essay in The Public Advertiser, 1749