The Cambridge History of the English Language, Volume 3: 1476-1776

By Roger Lass

This quantity of the Cambridge heritage of the English Language encompasses 3 centuries of titanic cultural switch, from Caxton within the past due heart a long time to the yankee assertion of Independence and the beginnings of Romanticism. in this interval, center English grew to become Early smooth English after which built into the early phases of indubitably "modern" English. This e-book lines advancements in orthography and punctuation, phonology and morphology, syntax, lexis and semantics, neighborhood and social version, and the literary language. It additionally incorporates a thesaurus of linguistic phrases and an in depth bibliography.

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Subj. NUM. NUM. NUM. pl. sing. pl. P E R S. P E R S. 1 2 three -e, -0/ -st -th, -s -e(n) 1, three 2 -d(e) -d-st -d-e(n) sing. pl. Phonology and morphology (72) EARLY smooth ENGLISH, c. 1500 stressful pres. prior temper temper ind. subj. /imp. ind. NUM. sing. subj. NUM. pl. sing. P E R S. pl. P E R S. 1 2 three 1, three 2 - zero/ -st -s/-th -d -d-st there's a regular raise in zero-marked different types; it's not too faraway from right here to the fashionable method: (73) smooth regular ENGLISH demanding pres. prior temper ind. subj. /imp. NUM. sing. pl. P E R S. 1, 2 three - zero/ -s 161 -d Roger Lass quantity (now conflated with individual) is proper just for pres ind. three sing. ; the subjunctive (where it survives) is merged with the indicative 1, 2 current and all persons/numbers some time past. certainly, the single distinctive subjunctive is the zero-marked three sing. current (except for the verb be, with its current be and ‘past’ have been in a few varieties). Superficially the circulation from (72) to (73) seems to be uncomplicated; it wishes in simple terms the lack of the current subjunctive and the stabilisation of the 0 plural (which within the early a part of our interval was once variable – see under) and current three sing. {-s}. (The destiny of the two sing. inflection is absolutely a part of the pronoun tale: it falls away with the you/thou competition. ) As ordinary, the implementation is much less user-friendly than the description, and the 16th- and seventeenth-century scenario is messy certainly. Even tense-marking has its problems; whereas the evolution of the susceptible verb is comparatively easy, that of the robust verb is convoluted within the severe (3. eight. four. 3). three. eight. four. 2 individual and quantity the most important systemic improvement, principally universal to either powerful and susceptible verbs, is that of the person/number endings. by means of the 15th century, texts within the incipient regular from London and thereabouts express easy current indicative paradigms: one basically East Midland in kind, the opposite Southern (though given texts may perhaps to at least one measure or one other be ‘mixed’): (74) East Midland kind 1 -Ø 2 -st three -th/-s pl. -n/s Southern style 1 -Ø 2 -st three -th pl. ({-s, -st, -th, -n} comprise allomorphs with a previous vowel, and all spelling editions, e. g. <-es/-is/-ys>, and so on. ) be aware that the Southern kind has {-th} for either three sg and plural, whereas the East Midland varies among older {-th} and new (northern) {-s} for three sg, and Midland {-n} and more recent (northern) {-s} for plural. there have been therefore various of mixtures to be had, the foundation for a posh edition trend, which could merely be hinted at right here. the trendy paradigm indicates an easy evolution: insofar as a different 2 sing. is still it retains its unique {-st} concords; differently the older three sing. in {-th} ‘was changed by means of’ {-s}, and plural marking vanished, giving a twomember paradigm, 0 v. {-s}. This in spite of the fact that took many years to ensue, 162 Phonology and morphology and the path used to be oblique. Even worse (see below), it isn't transparent that when a definite element (say the 1630s), the particular -th varieties nonetheless happening in texts may be taken at face worth; -th turns out to were written lengthy after it stopped being stated.

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