LINGUIST List 6.631

Sun 30 Apr 1995

Disc: About Modern Old Norse...

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  1. Jardar Eggesboe Abrahamsen, Re: 6.595, About Modern Old Norse ...

Message 1: Re: 6.595, About Modern Old Norse ...

Date: Thu, 27 Apr 1995 18:37:03 Re: 6.595, About Modern Old Norse ...
From: Jardar Eggesboe Abrahamsen <>
Subject: Re: 6.595, About Modern Old Norse ...

As I (and other Norwegians) keep receiving questions about the small
village in the Norwegian mountains where the people still speak Old
Norse, I just want to tell the Linguist list once more that I mailed my
message on the FIRST OF APRIL. It was a joke, OK?

However, I want to comment two messages, first the one from Leo

) For those who are not "students of Nordic languages": Jardar Eggesboe
) means approximately 'dwelling at the edge of the earth' in Old Norse, while
) Abrahamsen speaks for itself. The Old Norse motto in the signature means:
) 'Loki told the first lie today. (My saga of the lying tongue.)'
) And Jo,tunheimr was where the giants dwelt. Neat.

Jotunheimen really _is_ a mountain area in Norway. And my name _is_ Jardar
Eggesboe Abrahamsen. (Eggesboe is the family name of my mother and the
name of my own small village; Abraham was the name of my father's great
grandfather; my first name Jardar was "Jardharr" in Old Norse, a
masculine a-stem, and so not the genitive of "jo,rdh" (=earth).) The
motto in the signature has been correctly translated.

Some days later Paul Kerswill ( wrote:

) Dear April Fools,
) This 'new' old dialect of Norwegian has at least one precedent. My
) mother (a student at Oslo c. 1948) tells me that a professor of Norwegian
) nearly had a fit when he heard a student from some western fjord using
) the apparently long since defunct /dh/ (voiced dental fricative) in words
) like _tid_, _fjord_, etc. The student had apparently worked out where to
) put this sound, and the good professor was taken in.

That is no joke. I am from that area of Sunnmoere and Nordfjord where we
still pronounce postvocalic /d/, like _tid_ (time) and _saud_ (in writing:
sau; means sheep), not however after /r/ (fjord), as Old Norse /dh/ was
assimilated by it. Right where I live it is a plosive, but only one ferry
(yes, I live on an island) away from my village they still use the
fricative (mostly old people of course, but I myself have recorded some
children using it).

Jardar Eggesboe Abrahamsen
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