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Sources of London English: Medieval Thames Vocabulary (Hardback)
  • Sources of London English: Medieval Thames Vocabulary (Hardback)
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Sources of London English: Medieval Thames Vocabulary (Hardback)

(author)
£100.00
Hardback 256 Pages / Published: 28/03/1996
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The macaronic (mixed-language) business texts of London for the period 1275 to 1500 present a rich source of evidence for the medieval dialect of London English. Hitherto they have been ignored because of mistaken ideas about their value: they have been viewed as bastardized forms produced by ill-educated scribes. We cannot dismiss macaronic documents as debased or degenerate without investigation, nor should we underestimate the evidence they present for the development of the English language. The contemporary importance of these documents is attested by their sheer number - it is easier today to find macaronic business documents from the late medieval period in record offices than it is to find monolingual texts. The book focuses on terminology surrounding the River Thames to present a study of the medieval dialect of London. The vocabulary survey lists many words which had previously been lost to us, and the illustrative extracts from the texts present a fascinating picture of life in medieval times on the River Thames. The author's analysis covers the orthography, phonology, and morphology of the dialect as revealed in these texts.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780198239093
Number of pages: 256
Weight: 578 g
Dimensions: 242 x 163 x 21 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
important new study ... This austere linguistic study contains few generalizations, but pithy remarks sketch out ideas important for comprehending city life ... the essential material is presented with great transparency and regard for sense. This is the first substantial strike in a major scholarly campaign: the follow-up will be worth watching. * Derek Keene, Urban History *
These texts provide a new angle on the development of London English, accepted as the forerunner to Standard English. * The Medieval World *
This is a highly technical but extremely attractive socio-linguistic study derived from early London Corporation records ... From the point of view of dialect studies this meticulous work breaks with recent tradition in its deduction that the overwhelming variety of orthographic and phonological forms point to nothing like regional linguistic purity. Such reference works always make nice new research sources for many disciplines ... few volumes more engaging than this very felt, real book could lie by your bedside lamp this year. * Ruth Kennedy, Ricardian X No. 138 Sept 1997 *
Wright's survey provides the precise information any careful student of English linguistic history would require ... the entries in this survey often antedate citations in these dictionaries and everywhere flesh them out with illustrations that complicate and more fully specify their meaning and characteristic use. * Speculum - A Journal of Medieval Studies *
A detailed study of Middle English vocabulary belonging to a unique semantic field is always to be welcomed, particularly one as meticulously researched and well presented as Laura Wright's book. / ... SLE undoubtedly will be used for decades to come, with trust, working on the tortuous development of the London dialect of late Middle English./ Willard James Rusch, University of Southern Maine, American Journal of Germanic Linguistics & Literatures, Vol 10, no1, 1998
important new study ... This austere linguistic study contains few generalizations, but pithy remarks sketch out ideas important for comprehending city life ... the essential material is presented with great transparency and regard for sense. This is the first substantial strike in a major scholarly campaign: the follow-up will be worth watching. * Urban History *

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