England and America are two countries separated by the same language.

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950) British playwright and critic

  • "England and America are two peoples separated by a common language."
  • "England and America are two countries separated by one language."
  • "The British and the Americans are two great peoples divided by a common tongue."
Possibly a misattribution from Oscar Wilde in 1887: "We have really everything in common with America nowadays, except, of course, language."

One of the first attributions to Shaw, without source, was in Reader's Digest (Nov 1942). It also shows up in other articles at the time, referenced as a remark by Shaw but without any actual citation. The phrase is not found in Shaw's published writing.

For further discussion of the quote's origins: Britain and America Are Two Nations Divided by a Common Language – Quote Investigator.

Added on 12-Apr-16 | Last updated 13-Dec-22
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