Saturday, August 4, 2012

King Alfred’s English: A History of the Language We Speak and Why We Should Be Glad We Do

From their website:

"Do you remember the first time you looked under the hood of a car or popped off the back of an electric toy to see the inner workings? Well, most of us go through our entire life speaking a highly complex and organized set of sounds we call language without ever getting a glimpse under its hood. So come have a look at some of the hidden springs and gears that have steered and energized English over the centuries. King Alfred’s English provides a guided tour of forces and events, conquerors and writers that have shaped, simplified, matured and expanded English into what it is today—the first truly global language in history."

170 pages, softcover
$16.95 retail but available at lower prices (see here)

Available on Kindle for $5.95

The capstone of the book is the story of how we got the Bible in English and it’s influence upon our language.
  • What were the driving ideas behind the Reformation?
  • Are the New Testament documents really reliable and how do they compare to other ancient manuscripts?
  • Why was translating the Bible into English punishable by death?
  • …and what does all THAT have to do with the history of English?

The Bentz Test Laboratory  LOVED this book.  I was sent the digital version to review - a few sentences in...I knew I wanted this softcover book on my bookshelf! (a common reaction around here.. )  I could not put it down!

This is a great read, not just about our English language - it's like a stroll through history!  In fact, I'm adding it to my co-op's history class required reading.  The book is filled with interesting facts and history of our language.  Did you know - There’s a law for the way languages change that backs up Intelligent Design? I love the Christian Worldview presented throughout the pages!
The author writes in a very engaging tone, you feel like you're having a pleasant chat with her accross the table.  My older testers enjoyed this book as much as I did.  You can read the First Chapter and see for yourself!

You will want to visit her webiste -  "STUDENTS–*Hwæt! (Listen!) Here cometh thy big chance  for…Further Illumination" - Extra supplemental resources for each chapter of the book.  Using her suggested minimum requirements, the book and free supplemental material she provides can be used as a 1/2 credit high school history course, or a combined 1/4 credit history and 1/4 credit English course. Resources include suggested readings and links, worksheets, tests and writing activities.

See what the other members of the TOS Review Crew thought here.

I was sent a complimentary copy in exhchange for my honest opinion as part of the TOS Review Crew.

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