The word 'doubt' has a silent letter B in it. Why do you think this letter is here?
Now watch the video and answer the questions below.
First of all: what is a noun?
A - A word that describes a person, an animal, an idea or an object
B - A word that describes an action
C - A word that gives information about another word
The word 'scribe' is used (at the around the one minute mark). What is a scribe? Listen carefully to what is said about them. And if that doesn't help, then take a good look at the word itself.
The word 'indubitably' is used (1:37). Which of these words and phrases are synonyms for this word?
A - Without doubt
B - Not at all
C - For sure
D - Indeed
E - Doubtful
F - Certainly
What does the phrase 'beyond the shadow of a doubt' mean?
A - There is still a little bit of doubt about something
B - There is still a lot of doubt about something
C - There is absolutely no doubt about something
PLEASE READ BEFORE MOVING ON TO THE NEXT QUESTION
Did you know that English and French are related? Hundreds of thousands of English words were borrowed from French in the Middle Ages.
But that's not all! Both French and English are part of a big family of languages. Almost all European languages are part of this language family. And like with all families, some of its members are clearly very closely related and therefore very similar (like Dutch and German, for instance), whereas others are not (like Swedish and Spanish). Some members are relatively young (modern Dutch didn't exist 200 years ago) and others have been around for ages (Latin was spoken over 2,000 years ago).
Explain why the word 'doubt' has the letter B in it.
Explain the link between the word 'doubt' and the word 'double'.
Side note: the Old English word for 'doubt' was 'tweogan', which came from the word meaning 'two'. You can probably see a connection to the Dutch words 'twee' and 'twijfelen' here. All these words come from that one single Latin word, 'duo'.
Come up with at least three other English words that have a weird spelling. These can be words with silent letters, but you can be as creative as you like. Try to figure out how the spelling of these words came about using the insights you gained from this lesson.
Do you want to learn more about the history of the English language and how it connects to other languages? Click here!
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