Friday, February 11, 2011

British vs. American English

When Czechs learn English, they learn British English. And since not a lot of people here speak English to begin with, it is often better to use British vocabulary. That's why I find it much simpler to say "flat" instead of "apartment" and "lift" instead of "elevator".

I work with a few Brits here and at least once a week we have to sort out British vs. American vocabulary or spelling.

British English (BE) uses -our, -re and -ise while (whilst in British) American English (AE) uses -or, -er, and -ize. colour vs. color; neighbour vs. neighbor; fovourite vs. favorite; centre vs. center; theatre vs. theater, organise vs. organize, realise vs. realize.

Oscar Wilde once said "We have really everything in common with America nowadays except, of course, language". Here are a few of the vocabulary differences between BE and AE I've come across so far.

Next week I'm off to Portsmouth, England for a workshop. Who knows what new vocabulary I'll pick up next week?

Update: Here's some more British English.

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