Editor for this issue: Danniella Hornby
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Bjarke Frellesvig describes the development of the Japanese language from its recorded beginnings until the present day as reflected by the written sources and historical record. Beginning with a description of the oldest attested stage of the language, Old Japanese (approximately the eighth century AD), and then tracing the changes which occurred through the Early Middle Japanese (800-1200), Late Middle Japanese (1200-1600) and the Modern Japanese (1600-onwards) periods, a complete internal history of the language is examined and discussed. This account provides a comprehensive study of how the Japanese language has developed and adapted, providing a much needed resource for scholars. A History of the Japanese Language is invaluable to all those interested in the Japanese language and also students of language change generally.
Review of the hardback: 'This book provides a ready resource on pre-modern Japanese for linguists throughout the world.' - Satoshi Kinsui, Osaka University
Review of the hardback: '… monumental … it is likely to have an impact for decades to come …' - John Whitman, Cornell University
List of tables, maps and figures; Acknowledgements; List of abbreviations; Introduction; Part I. Old Japanese: 1. Early writing in Japan and Old Japanese sources; 2. Phonology; 3. Grammar; 4. Loanwords; 5. Eastern Old Japanese; Part II. Early Middle Japanese: 6. Writing and sources; 7. Phonology; 8. Grammar; 9. The sinification of Japanese; Part III. Late Middle Japanese: 10. Sources; 11. Phonology; 12. Grammar; Part IV. Modern Japanese: 13. Varieties of Modern Japanese; 14. Phonology; 15. Grammar; 16. Eastern dialect features of the standard language; 17. The westernization of Japanese: loanwords and other borrowings; Appendix. Summary of the main regular phonemic changes between Old Japanese and conservative Modern Japanese; References; Index of main grammatical forms; General index.