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  1. #11
    anupumh's Avatar
    anupumh is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Importance of Subjectand Verb Agreement

    Quote Originally Posted by The French View Post
    Hello everybody,

    I tell you a little story, I was born in Portugal and I have learn German in the school during eight years, and Spanish.

    I know a little English but you can trust me, when I read English's newspapers I find a lot of French words.

    If we have a language expert about the semantic of English we arrive at the conclusion that most English'words come from Latin Origin like the French. (Ask yourselves one question how many time are England invaded by Roamn and French?).

    Don't forget I live in France but I am Portuguese.

    I believe I have 50% of chance to be right.

    Have a nice day. (don't hesitate to correct my mistakes).
    I wont refute your statements, however my question dealt with english grammar and we have digressed to vocubulary...
    Last edited by anupumh; 31-Aug-2009 at 17:32.

  2. #12
    The French is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Importance of Subjectand Verb Agreement

    Yes, you right,

    but I am a latin guy, and latin people talk to much, albeit I believe your question it's more about the semantic language.

    Have a nice day and sorry for the disgression.

  3. #13
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Importance of Subjectand Verb Agreement

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    Although it's true that English grammar is mostly from Germanic languages, the actual vocabulary of the language is another story, as well as words of scandinavian and celtic origin, about 50% (some say more) of English words are of French origin.
    It's important to distinguish function words from content words.
    Function words are more indicative of the underlying source of the language.
    For example, the following did not come from French: the, there, that, these, with, (all the little words with /th/; of, for, off, from (all the little words with /f/); the personal pronouns: I, we, him her, she, he, they, them, their ...
    This is really what makes English Germanic.
    The French came along and added many content words, but the function words stuck.

  4. #14
    The French is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Importance of Subjectand Verb Agreement

    Hello M.Raymott,

    I think it is not very important, but I notice you have written little words. If we take one word like 'important' it is the same in French letter by letter, but can you find a word who is the same in German. Nice game but very hard to find one, no?

    Have a good day.

  5. #15
    orangutan is offline Member
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    Default Re: Importance of Subjectand Verb Agreement

    There are two separate issues here. One concerns the genetic origin of a language (I mean in terms of language families, not DNA). The other concerns influence ("language contact"). Usually the grammar of a language comes from the former (not always, but usually, and certainly in the case of English). It is not about which is more important (they are both very interesting fields of study), but it is important not to get them confused. Certainly the influence of French on English vocabulary is pervasive, and I am not trying to underplay it. But the language family English belongs to is nonetheless Germanic.

    The situation is a bit analogous (though I wouldn't want to push the analogy too far) with the influence of Arabic on Persian, or of Chinese on Japanese. Both influences are profound. But Persian does not belong to the same language family as Arabic, nor Japanese as Chinese.

    For those who are interested enough there is plenty of material about this on the web - the Wikipedia article on History of English would be a good place to start - and they can make up their own minds about what is what.

  6. #16
    bhaisahab's Avatar
    bhaisahab is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: Importance of Subjectand Verb Agreement

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    It's important to distinguish function words from content words.
    Function words are more indicative of the underlying source of the language.
    For example, the following did not come from French: the, there, that, these, with, (all the little words with /th/; of, for, off, from (all the little words with /f/); the personal pronouns: I, we, him her, she, he, they, them, their ...
    This is really what makes English Germanic.
    The French came along and added many content words, but the function words stuck.
    Yes, I agree, English is structurally and grammatically Germanic.

  7. #17
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: Importance of Subjectand Verb Agreement

    Quote Originally Posted by The French View Post

    If we have a language expert about the semantic of English we arrive at the conclusion that most English'words come from Latin Origin like the French. (Ask yourselves one question how many time are England invaded by Roamn and French?).
    Most of the Latin words used in English do not go back to Roman times but came, like the French, with the Normans. You find words from the Roman times in place names and things like that, but not a great deal else.

  8. #18
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: Importance of Subjectand Verb Agreement

    Quote Originally Posted by anupumh View Post
    I wont refute your statements, however my question dealt with english grammar and we have digressed to vocubulary...
    Language is arbitrary in many ways, so there often is no real answer to why-questions. Sounds get attached to meanings and become words, then they start to behave in certain ways. Virtually everything that is a rule in our language is different in someone else's so things could be different. In order to communicate widely, both in terms of what we talk about and people we can talk to, there have to be rules to create a common understanding. One group chooses one way and another group does it differently- there's no real why/because- it's just the way that a speech community ended up doing it.

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