I can start.
The result of the Battle of Hastings in 1066 is critical to understanding the relationship between English and French. Some Frenchman of the time suggested that English should be considered to be a dialect of French.
Actually English kept most of German, i.e. Anglo-Saxon, grammar (though it simplified the endings (inflections) immensely. The huge connection between French and English is the alternate vocabulary available in English. Latinate words sounding more prestigious and words about law, education, etc. tend to come from French.
I am sure someone else will get on this thread and be of more help to you. I would also suggest, however, that English word order tends to be more like French than German.
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