The English language is the language spoken by an estimated 300 million people as a first language in the UK, Ireland, the USA, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. It has official status in over fifty countries, notably in sub-Saharan Africa and southern Asia, and is the most widely used second language in the world. Germanic speakers began settling in England from northern Germany and southern Denmark from about AD 450, and Viking invasions in the 9 th century added a Scandinavian element to the language. The Old English period runs from the appearance of the first texts in the late 7 th century to the mid-11 th century, when the Norman invasion radically changed the nature of English.

Over 50 per cent of the vocabulary was replaced by words taken from French and Latin during the subsequent Middle English period (1100-1500). The Modern English period saw the language taken beyond Britain and the establishment of new regional varieties, such as American English. English spelling does not accurately reflect the spoken language, as it goes back to a period before the introduction of printing in 1476. Samuel Johnson's Dictionary of 1755 began the process of standardizing modern spelling. English grammar is relatively simple; the language has a remarkable capacity for absorbing foreign words, which has resulted in a large and international vocabulary. Additions to the English language come from other places or people apart from invaders or tourists.

They come from teenagers and young people. Another name for the language of teenagers would be slang. Slang is the unofficial language of different groups- it is used as a private way of talking between members of that group (e. g. young people at school) and also in order to keep other people out. The outsider often disapproves of slang.

Another form of English that is Standard English. This is the version of English that you are taught in school and which is used for writing and official purposes. It is sometimes called Correct English, or the Queen's English. You don't have to be a teenager to have your own version of the English language, even the area that you live in will have its own version of some Standard English words. The name for this is dialect. Dialect is a form of language used / spoken in a particular geographical area.

Dialects have at least three main features, they have often recognizable accents for example Gordy. They have special rules about the way sentences and groups of words are put together. They use some items of vocabulary words, which other dialects do not have. Accent can also determine where you are from. Colloquialism is also part of language. Colloquialism is informal words and phrases used especially in conversation.

Some people in many different parts of the country use Received Pronunciation. It is the accent used by most television and radio stations. Only 5% of British people speak with this accent. It is also the accent that foreigners learn.