A Social History of English is the first history of the English language to utilize the techniques, insights and concerns of sociolinguistics. Written in a non-technical way, it takes into account standardization, pidginization, bi- and multilingualism, the issues of language maintenance and language loyalty, and linguistic variation. This new edition has been fully revised. Additions include: * new material about 'New Englishes' across the world * a new chapter entitled 'A Critical Linguistic History of English Texts' * a discussion of problems involved in writing a history of English All terms and concepts are explained as they are introduced, and linguistic examples are chosen for their accessibility and intelligibility to the general reader. It will be of interest to students of Sociolinguistics, English Language, History and Cultural Studies.