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Studies in Linguistic Variation and Change: From Old to Middle English

This book comprises a series of studies by a number of scholars working on what might broadly be termed the “medieval” period of the history of English, focusing on Old English, Middle English, and the relatively less well-documented period of transition from the former to the latter. The volume brings together contributions not only from a variety of fields, ranging from semantics and syntax to prosody and phonology, but also from different theoretical standpoints, in order to improve the reader’s understanding of the rapid changes that affect the language at this time. The collection of papers here should be of interest to all scholars and students working on Old or Middle English, as well as to students of historical linguistics in general, given that many of the processes and methodological parameters described here will prove to be directly applicable to the study of other periods and of other languages.

Brian Lowrey is a Maître de Conférences at the Modern Languages Department of the Université de Picardie Jules Verne, in Amiens, France. He is co-founder, together with Fabienne Toupin, of the international Biennial Conference on the Diachrony of English (CBDA). His principal research interests include causative and perception verb constructions and complex complement structures, as well as grammaticalization and language change from a more general perspective. His most recent publication is “The Old English Causative verb hatan and its Demise” in Token (2013).

Fabienne Toupin is Professor of English Linguistics at the English Department of the Université François-Rabelais, in Tours, France. Her research interests include such aspects of English historical linguistics as grammaticalization, and lexical and semantic change, as well as the history of linguistic ideas. Her most recent publication is “About Plural Morphology and Game Animals: from Old English to Present-Day English” in Lexis, e-Journal in English Lexicology (2015).

"The contributors range from PhD students to emeritus professors, and the reader who works his way through the whole volume will undoubtedly learn a great deal. [...] This is ... a valuable collection of essays. It evinces a pleasing commitment to collecting and analysing the widest possible range of evidence, and for revisiting and revising the ex cathedra statements of dictionaries and grammars on this basis. Specialists in the historical linguistics of early English with an interest in any of the topics covered by the papers will certainly want to consult it."

Mark Faulkner Trinity College Dublin LINGUIST List 28.810 (2017)

Buy This Book

ISBN: 1-4438-7542-2

ISBN13: 978-1-4438-7542-4

Release Date: 7th April 2015

Pages: 250

Price: £47.99