I found this interesting learning a little bit more about the land of my birth. I discovered the article while reading the George Mason Students' Magazine, and have added it word for word.
A Brief History of the English Language.
If you had decided to come to Britain in the year 450 to improve your English, you would have totally wasted your money.
Firstly, you would have had a hard time finding anyone. The population of Britain at this time was a little over 400,000, The people were isolated in settlements and between them were huge dense expanses of forest populated by wolves, bears, beavers and wild boar.
Secondly, if you did find anyone to talk to you, you would only be able to recognize a very small number of the words we know today. The language you would be listening to was mainly Celtic.
'The Celts' was the name given to the isolated populations of people then living in Britain. They were descended from the ancient Iron-Age hunters who walked across the land bridge from France thousands of years before. Over the centuries the language had become fragmented and specific to the individual populations, with the result that there was no simple unifying language spoken by everyone.
Life in Britain was soon to change forever. Across the channel our green and pleasant island was being greedily viewed as a highly desirable living space and shopping centre.
The first invaders came from Jutland, in the northern part of Denmark. They landed in the south-east and settled in what are now the counties of Kent and Hampshire. The Angles soon followed from the south of the Danish peninsula, and entered Britain along the east coast. They settled in Northumberland and East Anglia. Not being happy at being left behind and missing out on all the fun, the Saxons and Frisians decided to follow their continental cousins across from Germany, and from 477 settled in various parts of southern and south-eastern Britain. We still refer to these parts of England as Essex, Wessex, Sussex and Middlesex.
The invaders called the Celts 'wealas' (foreigners) from which we get the name 'Welsh'. The famous British friendliness and hospitality had not yet been born, so the Celts couldn't be bothered to be polite; they ended up calling the invaders 'Saxons' regardless of their origins.
Over the next two hundred years the population of Britain either migrated to Devon and Cornwall, crossed the sea to Ireland and the Isle of Man, or to Brittany in France, or integrated with the visitors to create a group of people known as the 'Angli'. To this day there are similarities between the Cornish, Breton and Gailic languages.
Only a handful of Celtic words have survived to modern times.
CELTIC WORD MODERN MEANING
crag deep valley
eccles church (as in the town of Ecclestone)
caer fortified place (as in the city of Carlisle)
penn hilltop (as in the town of Pendle)
There are also a few Celtic-based river names:
Thames, Avon, Exe, Usk and Wye.
Added note: as it usually does when I come across anything I find interesting, I go on a google search to learn a little more and came across another article that was very similar. A small part of it states:
"Old English (500-1100 AD)
West Germanic invaders from Jutland and southern Denmark: the Angles (whose name is the source of the words England and English), Saxons and Jutes, began populating the British Isles in the fifth and sixth centuries AD. They spoke a mutually intelligible language, similar to modern Frisian - the language Northeastern region of the Netherlands - that is called Old English. Four major dialects of Old English emerged, Northumbrian in the north of England, Mercian in the Midlands, West Saxon in the south and west and Kentish in the Southeast.
These invaders pushed the original Celtic-speaking inhabitants out of what is now England into Scotland, Cornwall and Ireland, leaving behind a few Celtic words. These Celtic languages survive today in Gaelic languages of Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Cornish, unfortunately, is now a dead language. (The last native Cornish speaker, Dolly Penreath, died in 1777 in the town of Mousehole, Cornwall.)
A very interesting article. You can find that here.