A nice summary, but it misses quite a few important points. Aside from the fact we have several Celtic words not mentioned in the article ("cam" gives us variously camber, camshaft, etc. and "Cruck" meaning hill, gives us Church - building on a hill, making dear old Winston's name an accidental stutter) the most important elements are as follows. Anglo-saxon and old Norse had similar stems but different suffixes; the reason English is a language depending on word order rather than suffix is because dropping the suffixes enabled easier communication between the two groups now living cheek-to-jowl. Next up, French didn't surplant English but supplemented it. That's why, for example, peasants sat on stools (OE stol) and tended the cows (cowen) but their overlords sat on chaise (chairs) and ate the boef (beef). Sheard's marvelous little book The Words We Use, while nearly a century old now, is still a useful guide to illuminating many subtle aspects of the development of the English language and to my delight it's now available on Amazon as a paperback. My own copy cost a great deal more 30 years ago when I was able to chase it down thanks to an antiquarian bookseller in Oxford.

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