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H.L. Mencken (1880–1956). The American Language. 1921.

Page 117

2. Differences in Usage
  The differences here listed, most of them between words in everyday employment, are but examples of a divergence in usage which extends to every department of daily life. In his business, in his journeys from his home to his office, in his dealings with his family and servants, in his sports and amusements, in his politics and even in his religion the American uses, not only words and phrases, but whole syntactical constructions, that are unintelligible to the Englishman, or intelligible only after laborious consideration. A familiar anecdote offers an example in miniature. It concerns a young American woman living in a region of prolific orchards who is asked by a visiting Englishman what the residents do with so much frut. Her reply is a pun: “We eat all we can, and what we can’t we can.” This answer would mystify most Englishmen, for in the first place it involves the use of the flat American a in can’t and in the second place it applies an unfamiliar name to the vessel that the Englishman knows as a tin, and then adds to the confusion by deriving a verb from the substantive. There are no such tings as canned-goods in England; over there they are tinned. The can that holds them is a tin; to can them is to tin them.… And they are counted, not as groceries, but as stores, and advertised, not on bill-boards but on hoardings. And the cook who prepares them for the table is not Nora or Maggie, but Cook, and if she does other work in addition she is not a girl for general housework, but a cook-general, and not help, but a servant. And the boarder who eats them is often not a boarder at all, but a paying-guest. And the grave of the tin, once it is emptied, is not the ash-can, but the dust-bin, and the man who carries it away is not the garbage-man or the ash-man or the white-wings, but the dustman.
  An Englishman, entering his home, does not walk in upon the first floor, but upon the ground floor. What he calls the first floor (or, more commonly, first storey, not forgetting the penultimate e!) is what we call the second floor, and so on up to the roof—which is covered not with tin, but with slate, tiles or leads. He does not take