Why don't Americans speak British English

How to distinguish British English from American English

There is an old saying that Britain and America are "two nations separated by a common language" (two nations divided by a common language) are. Let's look at some of the differences between British and American English!


One of the most noticeable differences is the vocabulary used by Britons and Americans. Words used in one country may seem strange in another (Pants can mean both pants and underpants!). Holidays mean for the British holidays, but Americans speak of vacations. British live inflatsand Americans inapartments.You park your car in one in Englandcar parkand in the US in oneparking lot ...

The spelling

There are hundreds of small spelling differences between American and British English.Words ending in British "-re“-Ending often turns to in the US "-he":outtheaterbecomestheatre. And also from the British "-nce "is often used in America "-nse ":openbecomesoffense. Another noticeable difference is the transformation from the British "-ise "(e.g. organize)to the American "-ize "(e.g. organize). British often insert words "u "added (e.g.color), while this is not common in the US (e.g. color). And of course, many words in British English are spelled with a double-L (e.g.traveling), but this is not the case in the USA (e.g.traveling).

The grammar

Of course, there are also differences in grammar.Collective nouns (e.g .: staff, family, band, audience ...) are usually plural in British English (the team are on the pitch) and singular in American English (the team is on the pitch). Shall and shan’t are practically only used by British English speakers, as these appear very formal in American English. There are also some minor differences in the conjugation of irregular past tense verbs: Americans mostly need the "-Ed"Ending (dreamed) and British the "-t "Ending (dreams). Americans generally prefer gotten aspast participleinstead of the one used in Great Britaingot -and they need thatPresent perfecthardly ever!

And ... the accent

Of course, the biggest difference between British and American English is that Accent.With the exception of regional accents, Americans and British can get along easily. However, non-native speakers often need a little more time to get used to each accent.


Don't worry too much though! British and American English have far more in common than they are differences. You should now be ready to have both British and American conversations!

Melanie Hall - 1to1PROGRESS Educational Manager