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Ever since British exploration and colonization in the Renaissance English has had global influence on other languages. The first obvious effect was the creation of pidgins and creoles. Pidgins are very simple languages with limited vocabulary and syntax created for communication between native speakers of different languages; they exist only as second languages. Pidgins based on English were common in Africa. Creoles are languages that combine words from different original languages; they usually begin as pidgins but evolve gradually into a more complex language that can become a native language such as the Cajun and Creole dialects of Louisiana. Many languages use loan words from English -- the Academie Francaise is in a losing battle against such terms as "le weekend".
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