A Cultural History of the English Language (The English by Gerry Knowles

By Gerry Knowles

This e-book offers a brand new interpretation of the background of English. entry to massive corpuses of English has allowed students to evaluate the trivia of linguistic switch with a lot higher precision than sooner than, usually pinpointing the beginnings of linguistic concepts in position and time. the writer makes use of the findings from this examine to narrate significant old occasions to alter within the language, specifically to parts of linguistic inquiry which were of specific value lately, resembling discourse research, stylistics and paintings on pidgins and creoles. The ebook doesn't try to chronicle alterations in syntax or pronunciation and spelling, yet is designed to enrich a corpus-based examine of formal alterations. the tale of English is pointed out to the overdue Nineteen Nineties to incorporate, among different issues, discussions of Estuary English and the consequences of the knowledge superhighway.

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Some of these old words were recorded by Ray in 1691, and later in the nineteenth century by Joseph Wright in his English dialect dictionary. An interesting subset of these words is nowadays associated specifically with the Lake District. People who normally talk about hills, streams and ponds will nevertheless refer to fells, becks and tarns in the Lake District. g. } may be another case of English matching Danish , but this time not in the standard language. A similar usage can be found in the Lindisfarne gospel: suce ue forgefon scyldgum usum ('as we forgive us debtors').

The use of Latin spread with the growth of the Roman empire, which included modern Italy, Spain and Portugal, most of Britain, France, and Germany south of the Rhine and the Danube. Beyond Europe it included North Africa and Palestine. Following the decline of the empire from about the fifth century, Latin eventually disappeared as a spoken language on the periphery of the empire, including Africa, south Germany and Britain. It survived in the central areas of continental Europe, where it gradually changed into different varieties which in turn became the modern Romance languages.

It needs a highly coordinated army to drive people from their villages and flush them out of the surrounding forests and wastelands. To make the refugees move in the same general direction requires a transport system with a network of roads and railways. Such things can be organized by the German army in the 1940s or the Serbian army in the 1990s, but not by the Anglo-Saxon settlers of post-Roman Britain. Second, if all the British were driven out, who tilled the fields, milked the cows and bore the children?

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