Why do we speak the same language but so differently?

I have been here for a few years and everyday still I am learn something new such as a saying, new word or different way they use a word. People often wonder how hard it can be to be over here, I have tried to explain the difference to my mother-in-law but until she travels to the States, she will never get an idea.

I know that this "language barrier" can be challenging as I struggle with the differences on a daily basis. The lucky thing for Americans is that the British have a lot of our television shows over here so they will most likely understand what you are talking about. Unfortunately until we begin to get more of theirs we will be left in the dar.  I will try to bring up words that I have come across during my time here and hopefully entertain you with the stories on how I have encountered some of the bizarre things the British say. George Bernard Shaw is known to say that the United States and United Kingdom are "two countries divided by a common language"

So going ahead with that theme, I thought I would begin with why do we speak so differently than the British do, and I am not talking about accents. Actually there is a theory that Americans in New England speak more closely to the original English than the English speak now but that is a topic for another blog.

Sometimes you might wonder when did the changes of the spelling and grammar come in? Well Noah Webster (author of Webster's Dictionary) thought it would be good for America to change the spelling and grammar. He thought words should be spelled like they sound. He dropped extra u (favour, colour) and changed around theater (theatre). So that is why Americans will say the town Cottenham as “Cotton-ham” and not “Cottenum” as the British do. Also as the populations were separated, the language changed in different ways. As you know, the English language is always changing and words like whilst (still used in England) changed to while. Or the Americans say “trash” but the British have changed to say “rubbish” (although they originally to say trash).

It does drive me crazy up when I read in forums that the British don’t like the invasion of our Americanisms but some of them aren’t even American and they can’t blame us for everything. Anyways, the more I learn the more I will share but this is just food for thought.

Get more information from Grammar Girl.

All the Best!

American to Britain