This book traces the development of Standard English, revealing a complex
and intriguing history that challenges the usual textbook accounts. Leading
scholars offer a wide-ranging analysis, from theoretical discussions of the
origin of dialects, to detailed descriptions of the history of individual
Standard English features. Ranging from Middle English to the Modern
English period, the volume concludes that Standard English had no one
single ancestor dialect, but is the cumulative result of generations of
authoritative writing from many text types.