"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.
Historical linguistics is the study of how and why language changes--both the methods of investigating language change and the theories designed to explain these changes. This accessible introductory text takes a hands-on, how-to approach, rather than just talking about the subject as many texts do. The book contains examples both from familiar European languages, to make the topics accessible, and from a variety of non-European languages, to illustrate the depth and range of the concepts. The book also covers a number of topics neglected by most texts, including syntactic change, methods for investigating distant genetic relationship, linguistic prehistory, and grammaticalization.