There’s often talk about making English the official language of the US. In preparation, we are studying Old English. If they make English the “official” language, we will have to go back to the English from between 500 AD and 1066 AD to get the most pure English. After 1066, and all that, English becomes riddled with French, Spanish, Italian and Greek. Take the rose,  Sceptered Isle, featured in the lead photo as an example. It’s a David Austin “English” rose, but while Isle is derived for Old English, sceptered is Greek. While “sceptered isle” is from Shakespeare referring to England, in reality no Anglo-Saxon god or king would be caught dead holding a mariconada (oh no Spanish) scepter. A battle axe, yes, scepter no.  Therefore, Sceptered Isle would have to be changed to Battle Axe Isle.

Pope is derived from Old English, and there is probably a lot of liturgical Latin in Old English by 500 AD. However, Sorbet Bouquet is a real problem for the English purist. All French, with no good Old English words to replace them. Once English becomes the official Language of the US, we will have to dig up all our Sorbet Bouquet Rose bushes and throw them out.

Sorbet Bouquet