Making a Point: The Pernickety Story of English Punctuation by David Crystal

I don’t think I really need to apologise for this not being about Welsh, since there are a lot of fans of (Welsh speaking, as it happens) David Crystal here.

And by definition almost, we are all interested in the subject of language. That’s one reason why we are here.

I have only read the review, not the book, but it sounds very good, despite his having covered some of these issues in previous books. He never fails to be entertaining, enlightening and instructive.


DC is the President of my professional society, so I have had the good fortune of hearing him speak on a number of occasions. If you ever get the chance to hear him do go, as he is very good value - interesting and amusing, and a great presenter. Oh, and he lives in Wales, of course - on Ynys Môn.


That looks like a cracking read Mike. I have a colleague at work who studied linguistics at Oxford, speaks several languages and is rather pedantic. Several people have commented that they have received correction to their grammar and punctuation in his replies to work emails!

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Rather than starting a new thread, I’m posting this link here:

A light-hearted article with explanations (some of which are a bit tenuous, like the influence of Latin and Greek, that is the same in many other languages) why English is the way it is. What I found interesting is the passage about the influence of Celtic on English - the use of “do” according to the article, but according to others there is much more, e.g. the use of the gerund.


I found this fascinating! Obviously we’ve all known always that English is a polyglot mixture, but I hadn’t reallised how much influence those originally invaded still had, the mothers of the next generation in particular, no doubt!

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