We are having an argument, about the correctness of saying "Please use English".

  • A: Is it correct?
  • B: Is "Please use the English language" more correct?
  • C: Is the "Please use English" acceptable as a way to shorten the expression? (it is for a title, so space is scarce)

One side argues that "Please use English" would incite people to for instance take British persons and make them cook Fish & Chips.

  • 2
    I'd not use 'use'. Rather speak/write/type in English. No ambiguity that way! – Maulik V Sep 29 '15 at 6:05
  • @MaulikV I wrote the question that way, but it actually includes "English Usage" vs. "English Language Usage", for which your tip unfortunately does not work. – Nicolas Raoul Sep 29 '15 at 6:08
  • It makes no difference whether you say "Pease use English/the English language. In the sentence English means English Language, not English people. The English refer to the people of Britain. – Khan Sep 29 '15 at 8:56
  • @Khan: Thanks for the explanation! Would you mind making your comment an answer? – Nicolas Raoul Sep 30 '15 at 2:49

Please use English, Please use the English language and In English please are all equivalent in meaning.

Depending on usage, English implies the language, not the people, so, Please use English would suffice. The English are the people:

Fish and chips is a favourite of the English, as well as the Welsh and the Scots.

Please use the English language is correct, but bulky, as if spoken by or spoken to a non-native English speaker.


Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.