LINGUIST List 31.3791

Wed Dec 09 2020

Books: Language and Dialect Contact in Ireland: Maguire

Editor for this issue: Jeremy Coburn <>

Date: 16-Nov-2020
From: Anna Glazier <>
Subject: Language and Dialect Contact in Ireland: Maguire
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Title: Language and Dialect Contact in Ireland
Subtitle: The Phonological Origins of Mid-Ulster English
Published: 2020
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press

Book URL:

Author: Warren Maguire
Electronic: ISBN: 9781474452939 Pages: 272 Price: U.K. £ 75
Electronic: ISBN: 9781474452922 Pages: 272 Price: U.K. £ 75
Hardback: ISBN: 9781474452908 Pages: 272 Price: U.K. £ 75

Traces the phonological origins of one of the oldest colonial varieties of English

*Draws on data from the phonology and phonological history of Ulster English, and regional varieties of English and Scots

*Examines consonantal features, including velar palatalisation, pre-R dentalisation, epenthesis, consonant cluster simplification, palatal velarisation, and (non-)rhoticity

*Examines the origins of vowel quality and quantity (including the Scottish Vowel Length Rule), and vowel lexical distribution

*Draws on theories of language contact and shift, reinforcement, koinéisation, new dialect formation and colonial lag

*Draws on previously unpublished phonological data for Mid-Ulster English from the Linguistic Survey of Scotland and from a corpus of audio recordings of traditional south-west Tyrone English

Warren Maguire examines Mid-Ulster English as a key case of new dialect formation, considering the roles of language shift and dialect contact in its phonological development. He explores the different processes which led to the development of MUE through contact between dialects of English, Scots and Irish and examines the history of a wide range of consonantal and vocalic features. In addition to determining the phonological origins of MUE, Maguire shows us why the dialect developed in the way that it did and considers what the phonology of the dialect can tell us about the nature of contact between the input language varieties. In doing so, he demonstrates the kinds of analysis and techniques that can be used to explain the development of extra-territorial varieties of English and colonial dialects in complex situations of contact, and shows that Irish English provides a useful testing-ground for models of new dialect formation.

As one of the oldest ‘new’ extra-territorial varieties of English, one which developed in a context of language and dialect contact, MUE provides an excellent opportunity to study how new dialects develop in situations of settlement colonisation.

Linguistic Field(s): Language Documentation

Subject Language(s): English (eng)

Written In: English (eng)

See this book announcement on our website:

Page Updated: 09-Dec-2020