Difference between British English and American English?

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10 Answers

  • 5 months ago
    Favorite Answer

    Difference in Spelling

    Examples- British English uses -oe-/-ae- (example- anaemia. diarrhoea, encyclopaedia); -t (example- dreamt, burnt, leapt); -ence (defence, difference, offence, licence); -ell- (example- cancelled, jeweller, marvellous); -ise (example- appetiser, familiarise, organise); -l- (example- enrol, fulfil, skilful); etc.

    Examples- American English uses -e- (example-anemia, diarrhea, encyclopedia); -ed (example- burned, dreamed, leaped); -ense (example- defense, offense, license); -el- (example- canceled, jeweler, marvelous); -ize (example- appetizer, familiarize, organize); -ll- (example- enroll, fulfill, skillfull); etc.

    Difference in Pronunciation

    British English pronunciation does not pay emphasis on ‘r’ sound in words. The reason for this is that the higher classes in UK wanted to have an upper edge over the common masses through the way they spoke by softening the pronunciation of the ‘r’ sounds.

    Grammar differences

    In British English, collective nouns are taken both singular and plural; where emphasis is laid on use of collective nouns as plural. Example- The band are playing. The British happen to use formal speech, like using ‘shall’, more likely. The word ‘needn’t’ which is commonly used in British English, doesn’t find same place in American speech.

    Final point- Effective communication is the key

    Though there are plenty of differences in both, there are ample similarities that join the two accents together. Using one instead of other under certain circumstances and cultural influences will not result in miscommunication anyhow.

  • 5 months ago

    There are quite a few differences, but please pay no attention to the narrow-minded, poorly-educated bigots who like to claim that American English is in some way a cheap and inferior imitation of the wonderful faultless all-conquering British English.

    A simplified spelling system is the obvious difference that hits you in the eye. Again, pay no attention to the morons who claim Americans spell 'favour' and 'labour' 'wrongly' when they omit the 'u'. Anyone who's done even a few weeks of Latin can see for themselves that 'labor' and 'color' are the ORIGINAL Latin spelling, and if anyone is spelling the words 'wrongly', it's we Brits.But of course it's nonsense to claim that either way is 'wrong' - it's just that the words have been through different filters.

    There are grammatical features that differ, most obviously the far wider use of the Perfect tenses by British speakers.

    There is a lot to know. I've barely scratched the surface in mentioning two features that constantly come up in questions here. You will learn the differences more easily by reading widely in literature from both sides of the Atlantic.

  • Gloria
    Lv 7
    5 months ago

    Americans have distorted the English language and call it American English.  By definition there is no American English.

  • 5 months ago

    See "Comparison of American and British English" : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_Americ...

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  • Pontus
    Lv 7
    5 months ago

    There are differences in spelling, grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation.

    Of course, there's no such thing as American or British English.  Each country has multiple dialects that have differences in vocabulary & pronunciation, at least. 

    It is false that American English has simplified from the original English. 

    For example: The past participle of got in American English is the original gotten.  In British English, the simple past, got, has replaced the original gotten as the past participle. 

    Of course, there are other examples where American English has simplified things, however grammar differences are small and few, over all. 

    Many people, in both countries, are under the false impression that American English changed British English or evolved from it. 

    Every single dialect alive today in both countries didn't exist 400 years ago. Modern American & British English have both evolved from various dialects from roughly 400 years ago.  British English has made changes as well. 

    In many cases, American pronunciations preserve the original pronunciations (of course there are counter examples as well). For example, there are times when the R is not pronounced in many dialects of British English.  That's rare in most dialects of American English (although there are a few exceptions). 

    Here is a brief overview of differences: https://www.thoughtco.com/differences-between-amer...

    The differences are too numerous to list here. Here is a more comprehensive list (but exhaustive): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_Americ...

    Source(s): studied linguistics and the history of the English language.
  • nalla
    Lv 6
    5 months ago

    The Americans had to simplify our wonderful English language because they could not spell or pronounce the words, simplified language for a simplified people led by the simplest person in the world, TRUMPET

  • 5 months ago

    A faucet is a tap in the UK.

    Fanny means vagina in the UK and not a bottom.

    Chips aren't crisps.

    It's "se" in the UK rather than "ze", pulverise/ pulverize for example.

    Z is pronounced zed and not zee.

    I think other than that it's not a whole lot different, there might be the odd other couple of things I forgot but I think we mostly understand each other.

  • JimTom
    Lv 4
    5 months ago

    American English has been simplified from the original English. Often the differences are words with one or two less letters in the American versions of English words. English originated in England, so the British one was first.

  • Anonymous
    5 months ago

    Different words for certain things. Lift/elevator. Different spellings for certain words. Colour/color. Different meanings for different words. pants, chips, vest

  • 5 months ago

    British spelling are just weirder adding lots of unnecessary letters that make no sense. 

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