Awesome Language

The History of the English Language

The History of the English Language

English is one of the many Indo-European languages spoken in many parts of the world. Harrison Holt of The Generalist Papers looks at how our language evolved dramatically over the centuries and how it’s related to languages like German, Dutch, and Swedish.

What Exactly Is “Normal” Anyhow?

What Exactly Is “Normal” Anyhow?

Narrow-minded people often call others out for not being normal. But is anyone really normal or typical? This TED-Ed lesson by Yana Buhrer Tavanier explores the history of the term and how its misuse has had a tremendously negative impact on society. Animated by Eoin Duffy.

Advertisement

PIPNIC

PIPNIC

Pip Ketchip and Nic Musterd are friends. One day, they stop to enjoy lunch outdoors and strike up a conversation about tap water, bicycles, vacuum cleaners, and bear attacks. And then The Fuzz turns up. Real Big Boys knocked it out of the park with their comedy sketch about homophones.

Making Chinese Word Candies

Making Chinese Word Candies

Goldthread takes us inside a factory that makes special good fortune candies, each of which has a meaningful Chinese character in its center. Using soybean, black sesame, and maltose, their artisans handmake each rope of candy by stacking contrasting layers then stretching them smaller and smaller to reveal the letters.

God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen: Comma Placement Explained

God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen: Comma Placement Explained

Here’s a little Christmas song for the grammar and punctuation nerds out there. Enjoy as RamsesThePigeon sings an a cappella version of God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen, and plays around with the comma placement to explain why it goes where it does.

Why Upper and Lower Case Letters Exist

Why Upper and Lower Case Letters Exist

We’re grateful to have lower case letters, if only to limit people typing in ALL CAPS. The Generalist Papers digs into the history of letterforms in the English language on a quest to explain why we have two different versions of every character in the alphabet.

Speakly

Buy

Learn to confidently speak languages with Speakly’s smart training app. It automatically focuses on the most statistically-relevant words in order of importance, and its app lets you practice communicating in real-life situations from your phone or computer. Save 82% on a lifetime subscription.

Babbel Language Learning

Buy

Ready to learn a new language? Babbel will help you go from zero to language hero with access to over 10,000 bite-sized lessons, covering real-life conversational topics in 14 different languages. Grab a lifetime subscription for 40% off the regular price.

Evolution of the Alphabet

Evolution of the Alphabet

UsefulCharts takes a look back at the 4000+ year history of Modern Latin Script, the letterforms and alphabet used today in English and many other languages. Along the way, you’ll learn about other forms of written communication which don’t use an alphabet. The chart is also available as a 24″ x 36″ poster print.

Dead as a Doornail Explained

Dead as a Doornail Explained

We’ve all heard the expression “dead as a doornail,” but we certainly didn’t know its origin. History and weapon enthusiast Malcolm P.L. explains the true meaning of the phrase while demonstrating the building technique that inspired it.

American vs. British vs. Australian English

American vs. British vs. Australian English

Folks from the US, UK, and Australia all speak the same language, but there are clear differences in conversational speech. Language of Earth asked three English speakers to demonstrate the variations in accents, pronunciation, and terminology for some common words. Also, we feel like we just watched The Electric Company.

No Reading Allowed

No Reading Allowed
Buy

From the authors of P Is for Pterodactyl comes a kids book about homophones, homonyms, and tricky punctuation. The playfully-illustrated book compares various words and phrases that sound the same but can have very different meanings, like “The hero had super vision” and “The hero had supervision.”

Interesting Acronyms & Initialisms

Interesting Acronyms & Initialisms

Let’s kick things off with a brief language lesson. An acronym is made up of parts of the phrase it stands for and pronounced as a word, while an initialism is a kind of acronym pronounced as its individual letters. With that cleared up, Mental Floss is here with 25 of the abbreviated phrases from “CAPTCHA” to “WD-40.”

Advertisement

It’s Pronounced GIF

It’s Pronounced GIF

It’s a debate that’s been raging since the first file was produced in CompuServe’s Graphical Interchange Format back in 1987. With the help of podcasters Molly Ruhl and Gretchen McCulloch, YouTube personality Tom Scott takes a couple of minutes to set us straight on the proper pronunciation of the popular “.GIF” file extension.

What the #[email protected]!% Are These?

What the #$@!% Are These?

While we’re perfectly content to use actual swear words, for many years, they’ve been off-limits for use in most public-facing entertainment. Vox looks back at how random punctuation marks became the universal symbol for so-called “obscene” words.

QLango Language Games

Buy

Learning new languages can help you significantly expand your horizons. With Qlango, you can learn 31 different languages using a combination of lessons and fun games and challenges. This lifetime subscription gets you access and is 50% off in The Awesomer Shop.

Busuu Language Learning

Packed with over 1,000 lessons in 12 different languages, Busuu is at the ready to help you learn. It offers personalized study plans, feedback by native speakers, and speech recognition to help guide your progress. Save 50% on this 2-year Premium Plus subscription in The Awesomer Shop.

Social Distancing Bundle Deal

Buy

Being stuck at home gives you time to work on self-improvement. This bundle is a good start, with lifetime subscriptions to Rosetta Stone’s extensive language learning system, 12min’s library of book summaries, and KeepSolid’s VPN Unlimited to protect your online privacy.

Ludwig Sentence Search Engine

This unique search engine helps you create well-written documents, papers, work projects and more. Enter a sentence in English or one of 52 languages, and it will provide contextual examples from reliable sources. This lifetime subscription deal gets you unlimited searches with up to 60 results per page.

Why We Say “OK”

Why We Say “OK”

It’s a word we hear every day – “O.K.”, “OK”, or “Okay” is an acknowledgement that we understand something. But most of us have no idea why we say it. Vox delves into the history of the word, and how it became the nearly universal affirmation it is today.

Advertisement

Indian or Native American?

Indian or Native American?

In the first episode of his series “Reservations”, CGP Grey explains how the Europeans who took over America slapped a label on its indigenous people that would later be thought of as offensive, yet is still commonly used within tribes. Plus, the term selected to replace it has stirred controversy for other reasons.

HelloTalk VIP: Lifetime Subscription

Buy

An important part of learning a new language is conversation. HelloTalk is a chat app that pairs you up with partners around the globe, and includes tools for translation, pronunciation, transliteration, and corrections. VIP members can learn three languages at a time, and get improved visibility in the community.

Casually Explained: English

Casually Explained: English

(PG-13: Language) If you’re reading this, there’s an overwhelming chance that you can speak English. In this casual explanation, we learn what makes our language different than others, and why in some ways it’s easier to learn, and in others, much harder. Then there are the local accents and dialects…

Learn Languages with Mondly

Buy

Learn new languages quickly and easily with Mondly. The mobile app uses speech recognition tech to help you train your pronunciations, and lets you take part in virtual conversations. There are 33 languages to choose from, and you can grab a 1-, 3-, or 5-language lifetime subscription in The Awesomer Shop.

Rosetta Stone Lifetime Subscription

Buy

With its intuitive, immersive training method, Rosetta Stone will have you reading, writing, and speaking a new language in no time. Choose from Spanish, French, Italian, German, Mandarin, or Japanese, and save 33% in on a lifetime subscription in The Awesomer Shop.

Earworms Language Training

Buy

With the right rhythm and melody, a good song can easily get stuck in your head. Earworms takes advantage of this phenomenon to help you learn another language. Choose from Spanish, Italian, German, or French lessons, and save 50% in The Awesomer Shop.

ADVERTISEMENT
Next »

Home | About | Suggest | Contact | Team | Links | Privacy | Disclosure
Advertise | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Sites We Like

Awesome Stuff: The Awesomer | Gadgets, Games & Geeks: Technabob | Cool Cars: 95Octane
Site Design & Content © 2008-2022 Awesomer Media / The Awesomer™
Visit our Friends at: Not Always Right