In this little book, linguist David Crystal usefully sums up the history of the the thing that sets the homo sapiens apart from all other animals, language. Written with a younger and non-linguist audience in mind, it is especially joyful to read the well-layouted little book and review known things about language and learn some new things along
He beautifullly introduces the reader to the subject and splits it neatly into 40 interesting chapters, one of them for example ethymology: That the word salary comes from the salaire of the Roman soldierst might be known, but that the same root is in sausage and also in the Spanish salsa is probably a lesser known fact.
He also includes tweeting and facebooking, modern an ancient word plays, maybe you know what anagrams are, but not what palindromes and lipograms are?
How language came to be is universal, still the German language is referenced a couple of times in particular, when it comes to its close connection with English.
Author David Crystal, Honorary Professor of Linguistics at the University of Wales, Bangor is one of the world’s peeminent language specialists. He also writes an interesting Blog: http://david-crystal.blogspot.com
David Crystal, A little book of language, Yale University Press, 272
pages, English. Buy it here.