English 10: Writing Portfolio
Catholic Memorial High School
|"Democracy", although a very old
word, is fairly new to the English language. It is of the
Greek etymology and has been used in the English usage since 1531 by John Heywood. Although this is
the earliest English usage if the word, it has been used for thousands of years beginning in ancient
Greece. It was not until the Renaissance that the word was taken directly from the Greeks. Basically
the word "Democarcy" shows us how young the English language actually is compared to
others and is still changing with the times as well as still adding many new words from thousands of
years ago and using them as our own as recently as a few hundred years ago.
Many know the word "Democarcy" as a form of government. In fact when five people were
surveyed about the word all described the word in a definition and in a sentence as a form of
government. However, only 20 percent of the people knew that the word was actually developed as a
Greek government, while the other 80 percent simply referred to the word as a U.S. form of
government. The only one to realize the word came from the Greeks was Brandon who said,
"Democracy is a government developed by the Greeks which is now used as an American
government." Most of the people surveyed also knew that the government democracy was one run by
the people. However, there was one person who did not know this information. When Ariel was asked
about the word she said,"Democracy is the government we use in the United States" and when
asked to use it in a sentence she said, "I am really glad we use democracy as our type of
government." Even in the Oxford English Dictionary there is only one usage in which the word is
not used in the sense of government but as a political party.
In the Oxford English Dictionary three out of four definitions of the word "Democracy" as
a government run by the people. However, in the fourth definition it is used slightly different.
"Democracy" is used in the sense of American Politics. Examples include: "The
principle of the Democratic Party..." as well as ""The members of the Democratic
Party collectively...." This proves that just as in a simple survey, the Oxford English
Dictionary also uses the word "Democracy" as a government by the people and not too much
else. I feel this is mainly true because of the people first using the word were generals in the
army or into government and politics.
The word "Democracy began in the early 300's B.C. and got off to a great start when the
word was first used by Aristotle. It was not for a long time when the word was brought into the
English language when used by John Heywood in 1531. The writing was in Government I ii. Other
showings of the word include Lord Byron's Diary May (Ravenna) in 1821, John
Milton's Paradise Regain'd in 1671, and John Stuart on January 21st, 1841. These
were the literary authors who set the base for how the word "Democracy would be used until the
present time and who knows how much longer?
"Democracy is a word that has been used for thousands of years. Whether it was in ancient
Greece or modern politics, "Democracy" has set the trends of time and showed us that some
words stay the same even over thousands of years or can change in just a few hundred years. The word
"Democracy is much like the English language itself as it has not been around very long
compared to other languages as "Democracy" has not compared to other words. However, both
have roots that date back to thousands of years ago and show that just as the word "Democracy
has lasted so long, so shall the English language.
The word “bowling” is
thought of usually as a relatively new word as the sport itself is just
Since the beginning of time British Literature
has always had its differences from any other