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Welcome to the Britlish Library.

I hope you will enjoy the 230 British English lessons in the Britlish Library. I have designed the lessons to help you improve all areas of your English skills from writing and speaking, to listening and reading.

The British English lessons in the Britlish Library are full of multimedia content in the form of videos, audio files, animations, and engaging image files. This multimedia content makes learning British English much more fun and engaging than simply reading text in a book.


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Latest British English Lessons

Here are the 5 newest British English lessons from the Britlish Library. I add new lessons to the Britlish Library every week so make sure you bookmark this page.

The Suffix -ish

The Suffix -ish

You have probably noticed the suffix -ish at the end of many English words. The suffix -ish is actually in the words English and British, and consequently Britlish, too. A suffix is a tag that we add to the end of words to change their meaning slightly. In the case of -ish we add it to the ends of nouns and adjectives to form adjectives which mean approximately, somewhat, or like. It’s a very old suffix which Old English inherited from the Germanic. Common uses of the suffix -ish are colour words, talking about the size of things, when talking about the temperature of things, when describing qualities, and it is often added to numbers and time to indicate approximation.


Why are Human Beings so Stupid, Ignorant, and Pathetic?

Why are Human Beings so Stupid, Ignorant, and Pathetic?

This lesson looks at why individually humans are stupid, ignorant, and pathetic, but collectively, as a species, we are capable of incredible achievements. How long would you survive if the fabric of our society dissolved away and we were left to fend for ourselves? What do you think will come after humans have outlived their usefulness? Do this lesson to find out some of my thoughts on this matter.


Make Off

Make Off

Bernie Madoff died in prison on 14th April 2021 having served just 12 years of a 150-year prison sentence for running the biggest ever Ponzi scheme which defrauded people out of an estimated $65 billion. This English lesson takes a look at the ironic pronunciation of the phrasal verb make off, which means to steal money, and Bernie Madoff's last name which is a homophone with made off. The animation of the Madoff character in the video was done using iClone and Character Creator from Reallusion. I think it is the most realistic animation I have made to date.


Alaska

Alaska

This “Alaska” joke gets its humour from the pronunciation features of British English. If you understand the rhythm of English and how weak and strong syllables behave when we speak, you will be able to understand the humour of this joke. The Britlish Library lesson explains how and why the joke is funny and gives you plenty of exercises to help you learn, remember, and use these pronunciation features.


Wind Idioms

Wind Idioms

There are quite a few wind idioms in British English. I have created an Activation Quiz to teach you 15 of them and give you some practice using them. These 15 idioms include put the wind up, take the wind out of someone’s sails, and an ill wind, to name just a few. You can learn these idioms by doing the multimedia-rich, interactive activator in this lesson.

 
 
 

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Random British English Lessons

Here are three random British English lessons taken from the 230 British English lessons currently in the Britlish Library. I add new lessons every week, so be sure to bookmark this page. Sign up for a free membership and you will get an email each time I add a new lesson to the library.

Present Continuous - GA4

Present Continuous - GA4

I told you about the past and present tenses in Grammar Activation Pack 1. I also introduced you to the aspects – simple, continuous, and perfect, and showed you why the three key verbs, do, be, and have, are so important. In Grammar Activation Packs 2 and 3, I looked at the Present and Past tense of the simple aspect. In this Grammar Activation Pack, I am going to tell you how the second of the key verbs, be, is used for the continuous aspect, present tense. The continuous aspect is marked by the auxiliary verb be plus an ing form of a non-finite verb. There are 5 finite inflected forms of the verb be: am, is, are, and was, were. You already know that the inflected forms of be, am, is, and are, mark the present tense and that the inflected forms of be, was, and were, mark the past tense. In this Grammar Activation Pack, I will be looking at the present tense, continuous aspect. I will look at the past tense, continuous aspect in the next pack. This British English grammar is essential for all students of English and the many exercises in the pack will help you master it quickly and enjoyably.

 
 

Words Ending in the Syllabic Consonant -*n

Words Ending in the Syllabic Consonant -*n

A syllabic consonant is a consonant that is pronounced as a syllable. The two main syllabic consonants in English are /l/ or /n/ sounds. The /n/ in the final syllable of words occurs in words like listen, while the /l/ syllabic consonant occurs at the end of word such as bottle. Syllabic consonants occur mainly in the final syllable of words but can also occur at the beginning or within words, too. In this lesson, we will look at the 10 sounds that precede final-syllable /n/ syllabic consonants. I’ve taken 11 English words that have a final-syllable /n/ syllabic consonant sound. These are representative of the most common sound and letter combinations that give us a syllabic consonant /n/ at the end of words. I have chosen one word for each of the following sounds which commonly precede the /n/ syllable consonant: /t/, /d/, /p/, /s/, /z/, /f/, /v/, /θ/, /ʃ/, and /ʒ/. The words include: button, garden, happen, listen, cousin, soften, seven, strengthen, fashion, musician, and occasion.

The Full Stop - Punctuation for Students

The Full Stop - Punctuation for Students

The full stop or period is the most commonly used punctuation mark in English. The most common use of the full stop is to mark the end of declaratory sentences. It can also be placed after initial letters used to stand for a name, as in R.I. Chalmers, and also to mark the individual letters of some acronyms and abbreviations. While first introduced by Aristophanes of Byzantium in the third century, the full stop in its current position became popular from the ninth century onwards, and once movable type printing had become established, the full stop as we know it became the norm. It is not a difficult piece of punctuation to use, and is far easier to use than the comma. This lesson has a video that will tell you all about the full stop and how to use it, and a quiz to check your understanding of some of the vocabulary in the video.


Inversion

Inversion

Inversion is the reversal of the usual order of the words in an English sentence. The normal order of an English sentence is subject – verb – object. We use inversion for various effects. There are two types of inversion in English. Subject and verb inversion to become verb – subject. Subject and auxiliary inversion to become auxiliary – subject – verb. This English Activation Pack will tell you all you need to know about how and when to use inversion. The pack contains an Activation Quiz with over 250 questions designed to get you using inversion properly. Each time you do the quiz you will be given 10 random questions. This way, you will be able to get hours of practice constructing sentences with inversion. Inversion


Idiom Activation Pack - Food Idioms 1

Idiom Activation Pack - Food Idioms 1

Idioms are expressions that are natural to native English speakers. They are very confusing for non-native English speakers. They're confusing because idioms don't mean what the words say. You cannot literally translate English idioms into another language. The vocabulary in this British English lesson is important for students to learn and master. There are a lot of idioms in this lesson as well as a set of questions which I have designed to help you learn, remember, and use the vocabulary and make it part of your active vocabulary. If you are serious about improving your British English vocabulary, these common British English idioms are essential. The idioms are: Beef about, An acquired taste, Eat alive, Salt-and-pepper, Bad apple, Carrot and stick, Take candy from a baby, Water off a duck's back, Save bacon, and Bad egg.

 
 

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Britlish Library English Lesson Categories

I have categorised the lessons in the Britlish library into the following categories: English in Use lessons, Exams and Tests lessons, Grammar lessons, Humour lessons, Idioms lessons, Information lessons, Literature lessons, Phrasal Verbs lessons, Sounds British Pronunciation lessons, Spelling lessons, Vocabulary lessons, Writing lessons, Sounds Rude lessons, and more.

You can select all of the lessons in each of the random categories by clicking on any of the images below.

Phrasal Verbs

Phrasal Verbs

Phrasal verbs are like idioms and have to be learnt individually. They are an essential part of your English vocabulary, and without them you will not be able to say that you have any degree of fluency in English. This course of English Activation Packs has been designed to make learning, remembering, and using phrasal verbs as easy and enjoyable as possible. English speakers use phrasal verbs all the time, so you need to at least be able to understand what they mean. Use them yourself and you will sound much more like a native than if you don't.

Sounds British Pronunciation

Sounds British Pronunciation

No matter how good your English grammar and vocabulary may be, if your pronunciation is so bad that nobody can understand a word you say, then you are at a grave disadvantage in regards to your English. These lessons have been designed to help you to improve your pronunciation, as well as other areas of your English.

Sounds Rude

Sounds Rude

There is an important subset of English which is hardly ever touched on by teachers, and never by the textbooks. This subset of English is the English which sounds rude. The swearwords and curses, which make up a surprisingly large part of daily speech, are neglected by most teachers because, well, they sound rude. This course aims not to titillate but to teach the vocabulary that other teachers shy away from. If you are not offended by strong language, and would like to learn, remember, and use this "taboo" language, then you should take a look at these lessons. Please do not complain if you are shocked by the contents. You have been warned.

Grammar

Grammar

These lessons focus on the grammar of English. English grammar compared to other grammars is quite simple, but in its simplicity lies its complexity. The lessons here cover all aspects of English grammar from the aspects and tenses to sentence structures. English grammar covers the structure of words, phrases, clauses, sentences, and entire texts. There are eight parts of speech in English: nouns, determiners, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, and conjunctions. The largest of these parts of speech are the nouns which, unlike most European languages, do not have grammatical gender. English grammar has largely done away with the inflectional case system of other European languages and bases its grammar on analytic constructions. The lessons in this category will go some way to helping you get a better understanding of English grammar.

 
 

Exams and Tests

Exams and Tests

If you are preparing for one of the internationally recognised exams such as IELTS, or the exams from Cambridge Assessment English, or Trinity, then the lessons in this category will be very useful to your studies. If you simply want to test your English abilities in and see how you are progressing in your studies of English as a second or foreign language, then the tests in this category will help you. You can test your abilities in English by seeing if you make the same mistakes that advanced users of English or even proficient users of English make. There's also an English level test with a hundred questions to test your general level of English. Don't be afraid of making mistakes, as it's through mistakes that we improve in anything we do, including learning English.


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