The Norman Conquest – The History of English (2/10)

{“en”:”The History of English in ten minutes. Chapter 2: the Norman Conquest or excuse my English. 1066, true to his name William the Conqueror invades England bringing new concepts from across the channel like the French language, the Domesday book and the duty-free Galois multipack. French was ‘de rigueur’ for all official business with words like judge jury evidence and justice coming in and giving John Grisham’s career a kickstart. Latin was still used ad nauseam in church, but the common man spoke English, able to communicate only by speaking more slowly and loudly until the others understood him.

Words like cow, sheep and swine come from the english-speaking farmers while the a-la-carte versions, beef mutton and pork come from the french-speaking toffs, beginning a long-running trend for restaurants having completely indecipherable menus. All in all, the English absorbed about 10,000 new words from the Normans, though they still couldn’t grasp the rules of cheek kissing. The bonne amie all ended when the English nation took their new warlike lingo of armies, navies and soldiers and began the Hundred Years War against France. It actually lasted 116 years but by that point no one could count any higher in French and English took over as the language of power.. “}

As found on Youtube

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