"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.
Language and Letters of the Bluestocking Network
Sociolinguistic Issues in Eighteenth-Century Epistolary English
Mémoires de la Société Néophilologique de Helsinki LXXV
The Bluestocking circle in eighteenth-century England was a social network
which provided learned men and women with an informal environment for the
pursuit of scholarly entertainment. Elizabeth Montagu (1718-1800), a
notable social hostess and a Shakespearean scholar, was one of their key
figures. This volume presents linguistic research on forty years' worth of
correspondence between Montagu and her Bluestocking friends and family
members, and insights into language change and variation at an historical
micro level. This epistolary language use is investigated using the methods
and frameworks of corpus linguistics, historical sociolinguistics, and
social network analysis. The studies range from the reconstruction and
analysis of Elizabeth Montagu's most prominent social networks to the
analysis of changing morphosyntactic features and spelling variation in
Montagu's correspondence with her network members. The linguistic studies
look at the use of the progressive construction, preposition stranding and
pied piping, and full and contracted verb forms in eighteenth-century
epistolary English. The results of these studies are analysed in terms of
social network membership, sociolinguistic variables of the correspondents,
and, when relevant, aspects of eighteenth-century linguistic prescriptivism.