“Just how far removed we had already become from Britain even in the nineteenth century was not well understood in the mother country,” begins an essay in the first pages of the Canadian Oxford Dictionary.
“So it happened that the first person in recorded history who ever spoke of ‘Canadian English’ did so disparagingly. The Rev. A. Constable Geikie, in an address to the Canadian Institute in 1857, ten years before Confederation, stated that ‘Canadian English’ was ‘a corrupt dialect.'”
That anecdote paints a disheartening picture of Canadian heritage near its inception. Although Canada has evolved since then, that perception