English is without doubt the international language of the world. It has been that way for nearly six hundred years.
Where French was once the language of European diplomacy, Latin the language of the church and Greek the language of philosophy and science, English became of greater importance towards the end of the fifteenth century when the printing press was invented by an Englishman named William Caxton.
Today, English is the language for education, tourism, commerce, politics, economics, medicine and sport.
More than 375 million people around the world are native English speakers in countries such as Great Britain, United States of America, Australia, Canada and New Zealand.
In addition to this, it is estimated that one third of the population of the world can speak or understand English and that 89% of schoolchildren learn English in school as a second language.
The Chinese language has more native speakers than English but the main reason, it seems, why Chinese is not the language of the world in the way that English is, is because of its tonal structure. It has a different script and alphabet of letters, it has simplistic grammar, lacks articles, prepositions, verb patterns and tenses. Chinese is therefore less effective than English in expressing complex meanings.
Despite its lack of phonetics and irregularities in spelling, English is considered much easier to learn.
English became the adopted language of Britons who occupied the United Kingdom after the invasion of the Anglo-Saxons, Vikings and Normans. It has taken all of six hundred years to evolve into the English language we know today with blends of French German Latin German Greek and even Hindi.
William Caxtons printing press and English language standardization is not the only reason for universal English. Great Britain established a great maritime empire which included the colonization of North America and the subsequent creation of American English.
This is a consequence for American and British English not only being spoken differently but with different words for the same meaning. All languages, not just English, have of course dialect and accent.
The English language is a journey for life. Once it is a part of your life, it will never end. English language is always evolving, especially with the advent of modern technology and the social habit of smartphone texting.
Be prepared for a few challenges and surprises along the way.