History of English : A Resource Book for Students book cover
1st Edition

History of English
A Resource Book for Students

ISBN 9780415444293
Published July 31, 2008 by Routledge
210 Pages

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Book Description

History of English provides students with the historical and contextual background to the study of English and answers the questions of why and how the English language has come to be written and spoken as it is today. This book provides a fresh perspective and innovative insight into an area that is often dealt with in a prosaic and dry manner. History of English:

  • provides a comprehensive introduction to the history of English
  • covers the origins of English, the change from Old to Middle English and the influence of other languages on English
  • provides key reading from leading figures in the field such as Jean Aitchison, Dick Leith, Bruce Mitchell and David Graddol
  • is accompanied by a supporting website.

Structured to reflect the chronological development of the English language, History of English describes and explains the changes in the language over a span of 1500 years, covering all aspects from phonology and grammar, to the register and discourse. The book also considers international varieties of Englishes and the most recent developments in the history of English.

Incorporating examples from a wide variety of texts History of English provides an interactive and structured textbook that will be essential reading for all students of English language and linguistics.

Table of Contents

Part 1: An External History of English  1. Origins of English  2. The History of English or the History of Englishes?  3. Language Contact in the Middle Ages  4. From Middle English to Early Modern English  5. The Process of Standardisation  6. Colonialism, Imperialism and the Spread of English  7. Moves Towards Present Day English  8. Global English and Beyond  Part 2: A Developing Language  1. Understanding Old English  2. Varieties of Old English  3. The Emergence of Middle English  4. Sound Shifts  5. Writing in Early Modern English  6. The Development of American English  7. International English  8. The Globalisation of English  Part 3: Exploring the History of English  1. The Roots of English  2. Regions and Dialects  3. From Old English to Middle English  4. Codification and Attitudes Towards English  5. Further Elements of Grammar in Early Modern English  6. English in the New World  7. Present Day Englishes  8. The Future of English?  Part 4: Readings in the History of English  1. Vocabulary in Old English  2. Old English Dialects  3. The Influence of French  4. Changes in Pronunciation  5. ‘Fixing’ the Language  6. American English  7. A Corpus Approach to Linguistic Development  8. Predicting the Future.  Further Reading.  References

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"...McIntyre's publication is to be recommended as a useful, modern
resource for the teaching of the beginner undergraduate audience it targets..."

-- Linguist List, May 2009

Support Material

Companion Website

Please visit our companion website for additional support materials.