The Birth of Scientific English

World science is dominated today by a small number of languages, including Japanese, German, and French, but it is English which is probably the most popular global language of science. This is not just because of the importance of English- speaking countries such as the USA in scientific research; the scientists of many non-English-speaking countries find that they need to write their research papers in English to reach a wide international audience. Given the prominence of scientific English today, it may seem surprising that no one really knew how to write science in English before the 17th century. Before that, Q28 Latin was regarded as the lingua franca1 for European intellectuals.

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