A chronological history of the English language examined through the lens of historical events that shaped the development and spread of the language from the Eurasian steppe to the entire world.
Episode 154: English Equality
By the mid-1500s, scholars were becoming more confident in ability of English to express sophisticated ideas and concepts associated with classical learning. Writers began to use English beside Latin and Greek in many scholarly works during this period. English also … Continue reading →
Episode 153: Zombie Letters
In early Modern English, writers and printers began to revise the spelling of many English words to reflect their etymological origins. Old letters were revived from the dead to reflect sounds that had disappeared over time in those words. This … Continue reading →
Episode 152: As the Saying Goes
John Heywood was a playwright and poet who made two important contributions to the history of English. He was a key figure in the emergence of modern English drama which led directly to William Shakespeare at the end of the … Continue reading →
Episode 151: Sick to Death
During the reign of Henry VIII, medical books and herbals proved to be some of the most popular publications in England. The people of England wanted medical books that they could read in the own language. The largely unregulated medical … Continue reading →
Episode 150: A Capital Offense
In the 1530s, Henry VIII declared himself to be the ‘Supreme Head’ of the Church of England, and he demanded absolute loyalty from his subjects. Those who crossed him risked the loss of their heads. Meanwhile, the modern punctuation system started … Continue reading →
Episode 149: Breaking Up Is Hard To Do
In the years following Martin Luther’s protest against the Catholic Church, small fractures soon turned into a major rift. The Protestant Reformation led to the break-up of the Western Church. Meanwhile in England, the marriage of Henry VIII and Catherine … Continue reading →
Informative and to the Point
I really like how focused this podcast is, and the flow is amazing! The organization and progression of episodes is perfect, it’s answering so many questions I’ve always had about connections between other languages and English, and the effect history has had on English.
I love this podcast. It is a history lesson, but for whatever reason, the focus on language makes it so much more interesting. We are only in the twelfth century now (a time that I usually find very dull to learn about),and I am so delighted every time there is a new episode. And this is not going to sound quite right, but Kevin's voice is very relaxing, and sometimes when I can't sleep at night I listen to a podcast, and it puts me in a good frame of mind to go to sleep. Thinking about the full span of history ...or something. Anyway, I have a few other podcasts I listen to from time to time but this is by far my favorite.
Amazing! Super Detailed and very interesting
This kind of stuff is right up my alley! And the information is super interesting and well presented.