As mental images go, it is more accurate to think of English as a pirate than as a mugger, both in terms of acquisition of new words, as well as actualy historical fact.
Also the wooden leg. ;)
Blue - the quote you just gave was coined by James Nicoll, a prolific poster on the rec.arts.sf.written newsgroup, way back in the nineties.
It seems to be quoted ever more frequently, but rarely with any attribution, let alone the correct one.
English should really be called celtic-romanic-anglo-saxon-franc-ish. (And that's just pre-Empire)
Kath, I've never seen any kind of credit given to that quote. I'll have to remember that!
Janny uses the word asperity some so I had to look it up. You taught me a new word Janny. My dad didn't even know of that one and he's a walking dictionary. I'll have to figure out how to put it in a sentence now. lol
This is one of those time where being bilingual pays off. Aspero = rough in Spanish.