Thu, Oct 10, 2019 - Page 15 News List

American & British English

Today is Double Ten, the Republic of China’s National Day. America’s national day is July 4, known as Independence Day, commemorating the July 4, 1776 US Declaration of Independence from Britain. There is no British national day, although the monarch’s official birthday, marked in the UK since 1748, is sometimes seen as its national day. The official birthday is not the same as the monarch’s actual birthday, and it is celebrated in late May or early June, because the weather is nicer at that time of year in the UK.

After the US declared independence, the American lexicographer Noah Webster was keen to standardize American speech and spelling, and also cement the distinction between British English and American English. He did not invent most of the characteristically American spellings, such as removing the “u” in words like “color” or “favorite,” but he was instrumental in popularizing them, especially with his An American Dictionary of the English Language, published in 1828. As a spelling reformer, he preferred already existing alternative spellings, such as “color” or “center,” that better reflected the actual pronunciation. Not all of his suggested alternatives have been adopted, however: he used “cloke” for “cloak,” “tung” for “tongue”; “thum” for “thumb,” “wimin” for “women” and “steddy” for “steady,” for example.

(Paul Cooper, Taipei Times)

今天是雙十節──中華民國國慶日。美國的國慶是在七月四日,稱做「Independence Day」(獨立紀念日),以紀念美國在一七七六年七月四日宣布脫離英國而獨立。英國並沒有國慶日,雖然自一七四八年以來,英國有時會把君主的官方生日訂為國慶日。君主的官方生日並非其實際生日,而是在五月下旬或六月初來慶祝,因為英國每年這段時間的天氣比較好。



This story has been viewed 5108 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top