Basic English

“Basic English: A simple form of English designed by C.K. Ogden (1889-1957). It has 850 words, with rules of their use and expansion of sense, and 150 more bridge words for specific fields, such as medicine, chemistry, and physics, which have themselves a body of internationally common words or signs. Working with Ogden on its development was I.A. Richards, who took the system to schools and universities in China as a help in the teaching of English at all levels. Its possible use as an international language was the reason Sir Winston Churchill, one of its strong supporters, gave part of his talk at a Harvard commencement in Basic English. Before his death in 1979, Richards was again in China, working on the use of basic English for international purposes. [Ed. Note: This entry is written in Basic English.]”

Excerpted from: Murphy, Bruce, ed. Benet’s Reader’s Encyclopedia, Fourth Edition. New York: Harper Collins, 1996.

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