- of, relating to, or characteristic of England or its inhabitants, institutions, etc.
- belonging or relating to, or spoken or written in, the English language: a high-school English class; an English translation of a Spanish novel.
- the people of England collectively, especially as distinguished from the Scots, Welsh, and Irish.
- the Germanic language of the British Isles, widespread and standard also in the U.S. and most of the British Commonwealth, historically termed Old English (c450–c1150), Middle English (c1150–c1475), and Modern English (after c1475). Abbreviation: E
- English language, composition, and literature as offered as a course of study in school.
- a specific variety of this language, as that of a particular time, place, or person: American English; Shakespearean English.
- simple, straightforward language: What does all that jargon mean in English?
- Sports. (sometimes lowercase)
- a spinning motion imparted to a ball, especially in billiards.
- body English.
- Printing. a 14-point type of a size between pica and Columbian.
- a grade of calendered paper having a smooth matte finish.
- to translate into English: to English Euripides.
- to adopt (a foreign word) into English; Anglicize.
- (sometimes lowercase) Sports. to impart English to (a ball).
Origin of English
- the many and varied dialects of English spoken in different parts of the world, including not only American and British English, but such varieties as Indian, Pakistani, Australian, and New Zealand English, as well as the English spoken in various African and Asian countries. In some parts of the world, English is spoken as a natural outgrowth of a colonial period during which certain countries, now independent, were part of the British Empire. In other places, people have been encouraged to learn English because of its widespread use as a language of global communication.
Examples from the Web for english
His first language was Russian, then he learned Swedish, but chooses to perform in monosyllabic broken English.The Cult of Yung Lean: ‘I’m Building An Anarchistic Society From the Ground Up’
January 4, 2015
“Gently rolling hills” roll not-so-gently under my tires, but the English countryside scenery is soporific.Biking With the Bard
December 28, 2014
Her phone rings at least once an hour with questions from journalists, which she answers in Arabic, English, and sometimes French.A Sunni-Shia Love Story Imperiled by al Qaeda
December 26, 2014
“Deck the Halls” was written back in the 16th century, when the English language was very different.The Most Confusing Christmas Music Lyrics Explained (VIDEO)
December 24, 2014
You mix up English working-class gruffness with African-American soul from the Deep South.The Greatest Rock Voice of All Time Belonged to Joe Cocker
December 23, 2014
However, there was one comfort—English tongues answered, if it was only with denials.
Lucas spoke to him in Flemish to explain his own return with the English prentice.
They have seen the telegraph line, as can be seen by signs they make, but they cannot speak English.Explorations in Australia
"You see we do not follow the English style," said the smooth hostess to Philip.Malbone
Thomas Wentworth Higginson
"I'd like to recite English in one of your classes, Emma," smiled Grace.Grace Harlowe's Return to Overton Campus
Jessie Graham Flower
- the official language of Britain, the US, most parts of the Commonwealth, and certain other countries. It is the native language of over 280 million people and is acquired as a second language by many more. It is an Indo-European language belonging to the West Germanic branchSee also Middle English, Old English, Modern English
- the English (functioning as plural) the natives or inhabitants of England collectively
- (formerly) a size of printer's type approximately equal to 14 point
- an old style of black-letter typeface
- (often not capital) the usual US and Canadian term for side (def. 16)
- denoting, using, or relating to the English language
- relating to or characteristic of England or the English
- archaic to translate or adapt into EnglishRelated prefix: Anglo-
Word Origin and History for english
"people of England; the speech of England," Old English Englisc (contrasted to Denisc, Frencisce, etc.), from Engle (plural) "the Angles," the name of one of the Germanic groups that overran the island 5c., supposedly so-called because Angul, the land they inhabited on the Jutland coast, was shaped like a fish hook (see angle (n.)).
The term was used from earliest times without distinction for all the Germanic invaders -- Angles, Saxon, Jutes (Bede's gens Anglorum) -- and applied to their group of related languages by Alfred the Great. After 1066, of the population of England (as distinguished from Normans and French), a distinction which lasted only about a generation.
In pronunciation, "En-" has become "In-," but the older spelling has remained. Meaning "English language or literature as a subject at school" is from 1889. As an adjective, "of or belonging to England," from late 13c. Old English is from early 13c.
"spin imparted to a ball" (as in billiards), 1860, from French anglé "angled" (see angle (n.)), which is similar to Anglais "English."