Why doesn English have diacritics?
I’m not really the best person to answer this, but I’ll point out a few things: • Unlike most modern alphabetic languages, English is nowhere close to phonetic. In proper Spanish, for instance, if you know how a word is spelled you know how to pronounce it. In English, the correlation between spelling and pronunciation is rather weak — we tend to change the words are pronounced but leave the spellings the same, giving us ridiculous words like knight, cough, of, etc. If you’re not going to go to the trouble to use the right letters to spell words, why bother with fancy accents? • As a matter of fact, English does feature some words with diacritics, including some which are (or were) used quite commonly, for instance: cursèd or résumé. In each of these cases, if I showed you the word without the diacritics, you wouldn’t know how to pronounce it. In the former case you wouldn’t even be able to infer from context unless it was in a metered poem, since cursed means the same thing whether y