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Mother Tongue: The Story of the English Language

Mother Tongue: The Story of the English Language

Paperback

By (author) Bill Bryson

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  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
  • Format: Paperback | 288 pages
  • Dimensions: 128mm x 196mm x 20mm | 140g
  • Publication date: 1 October 2009
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0141040084
  • ISBN 13: 9780141040080
  • Sales rank: 2,507

Product description

'More than 300 million people in the world speak English and the rest, it sometimes seems, try to...' Only Bill Bryson could make a book about the English language so entertaining. With his boundless enthusiasm and restless eye for the absurd, this is his astonishing tour of English. From its mongrel origins to its status as the world's most-spoken tongue; its apparent simplicity to its deceptive complexity; its vibrant swearing to its uncertain spelling and pronunciation, Bryson covers all this as well as the many curious eccentricities that make it as maddening to learn as it is flexible to use. Bill Bryson's classic "Mother Tongue" is a highly readable and hilarious tale of how English came to be the world's language.

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Author information

Bill Bryson's is the author of many books including, most recently, his memoir The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid and Shakespeare. A Short History of Nearly Everything was shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize, and won the Aventis Prize for Science Books and the Descartes Science Communication Prize.

Review quote

'Not only fascinating but extremely funny' - Angus Deayton 'The sort of linguistics I like, anecdotal, full of revelations, and with not one dull paragraph' - Ruth Rendell, Sunday Times 'A gold mine of language-anecdote, information, curiosity. A suprise on every page... enthralling' Observer 'Delightful, amusing and provoking... A joyful celebration of our wonderful language, which is packed with curiosities and enlightenment on every page' Sunday Express 'A delightful survey - though with its good humour, wealth of anecdote, and boyish enthusiasm, "romp" would be a better word.' - David Crystal