Old English: a hillbilly cousin of Sanskrit?

I went on a search to find a book that spoke in detail of the Roman occupation of England and their subsequent influence on the English language. Luckily, I found a great book by the name of A History of the English Language Fourth Edition written by Albert C. Baugh and Thomas Cable. It’s a bit outdated since it discussed the breakup of Yugoslavia and the recent German reunification, so, yeah, about twenty years old. Anyways, this book is very detailed in discussing English phonology and morphology. I found it most interesting when they traced English back to the Germanic language family and then further to discuss Proto-Germanic as a subset of the Indo-European language family.

As I continued reading, I remembered I read that Sanskrit was part of the Indo-European family brought by the Aryans traveling through Iran and to the Northwest region of India. Imagine my amazement when they traced Sanskrit to Old English. Here is an excerpt from the book:


Grimm’s Law is provided as an explanation. There was a consonantal shift from Indo-European to Germanic Languages. Thus, throughout history, Indo-European languages changed, Germanic branched into its own language family and then English branched off even further in various ways, shapes, or forms. This is a brief look at the change, but I wanted to inspire others to research and discover their own connections of the English language.

Fun Fact: In 1906 United States’ President Theodore Roosevelt supported a reform to simplify English spelling. It would have changed have to hav, were to wer, and addressed to addresst – amongst many others.

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