22 Facts About American English


American English, sometimes called United States English or US English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the United States.

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Since the 20th century, American English has become the most influential form of English worldwide.

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American English varieties include many patterns of pronunciation, vocabulary, grammar, and particularly spelling that are unified nationwide but distinct from other English dialects around the world.

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The sound of American English continues to evolve, with some local accents disappearing, but several larger regional accents having emerged in the 20th century.

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Use of American English in the United States is a result of British colonization of the Americas.

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The first wave of American English-speaking settlers arrived in North America during the early 17th century, followed by further migrations in the 18th and 19th centuries.

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American English thus predominated in the colonies even by the end of the 17th century's first immigration of non-American English speakers from Western Europe and Africa.

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Additionally, firsthand descriptions of a fairly uniform American English became common after the mid-18th century, while at the same time speakers' identification with this new variety increased.

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Since the 18th century, American English has developed into some new varieties, including regional dialects that retain minor influences from waves of immigrant and enslaved speakers of diverse languages.

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Some racial and regional variation in American English reflects these groups' geographic settlement, their de jure or de facto segregation, and patterns in their resettlement.

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Studies on historical usage of English in both the United States and the United Kingdom suggest that spoken American English did not simply deviate away from period British English, but is conservative in some ways, preserving certain features contemporary British English has since lost.

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However, General American English is more innovative than the dialects of England or elsewhere in the world in a number of its own ways:.

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American English speakers have integrated traditionally non-English terms and expressions into the mainstream cultural lexicon; for instance, en masse, from French; cookie, from Dutch; kindergarten from German, and rodeo from Spanish.

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The names of some American English inventions remained largely confined to North America as did certain automotive terms.

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American English has always shown a marked tendency to use words in different parts of speech and nouns are often used as verbs.

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The main differences are that American English usually uses spellings such as flavor for British flavour, fiber for fibre, defense for defence, analyze for analyse, license for licence, catalog for catalogue and traveling for travelling.

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Regional sounds of present-day American English are reportedly engaged in a complex phenomenon of "both convergence and divergence": some accents are homogenizing and leveling, while others are diversifying and deviating further away from one another.

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Below, ten major American English accents are defined by their particular combinations of certain vowel sounds:.

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Rather than one particular accent, General American English is best defined as an umbrella covering an American English accent that does not incorporate features associated with some particular region, ethnicity, or socioeconomic group.

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Typical General American English features include rhoticity, the father–bother merger, Mary–marry–merry merger, pre-nasal "short a" tensing, and other particular vowel sounds.

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The island state of Hawaii, though primarily American English-speaking, is home to a creole language known commonly as Hawaiian Pidgin, and some Hawaii residents speak American English with a Pidgin-influenced accent.

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American English gave rise to some dialects outside the country, for example, Philippine English, beginning during the American occupation of the Philippines and subsequently the Insular Government of the Philippine Islands; Thomasites first established a variation of American English in these islands.

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