"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more
To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.
This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.
"Scrambling", the kind of word order variation found in West Germanic
languages, has been commonly treated as a phenomenon completely unrelated
to North Germanic "Object Shift". This book questions this view and defends
a unified analysis on the basis of strictly syntactic and phonological
evidence. Given that its main conclusions are drawn from German data, it
also sheds light on several problematic aspects of the grammar of this
language, which have traditionally resisted a principled account. Prominent
among these are: the inconsistent behaviour of German coherent infinitives
with respect to extraction of their internal arguments; the existence of a
less "liberal" type of "Scrambling" within topicalised VPs; the link
between reordering possibilities and headfinalness; the asymmetry exhibited
by monotransitive and ditransitive structures with respect to the
interaction between "Scrambling" and the unmarked word order, and, finally,
certain anomalies in the reordering of the lower arguments of ditransitive
predicates that assign inherent case.