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Common Germanic Languages, classification, characteristics.

Old English (also called Anglo-Saxon English by its speakers) is an early form of the English language that was spoken and written in parts of what are now England and south-eastern Scotland between the mid-5th century and the mid-12th century. The history of the Germanic group of languages begins with the Proto-Germanic lang(15-10th c BC).PG is an entirely pre-historic lang,it was never recorded in written form.In the 19th c,it was reconstructed by comparative linguistics…The Germanic languages today are conventionally divided into three linguistic groups: East Germanic, North Germanic, and West Germanic. This division had begun by the 4th cent. A.D. The East Germanic group, to which such dead languages as Burgundian, Gothic, and Vandalic belong, is now extinct. However, the oldest surviving literary text of any Germanic language is in Gothic. The Gothic langu,now dead,was preserved in written records of the 4-6th c. The Goths were the 1st of Teutons to become Chistian. In the 4th c,Ulfilas,a West Gothic bishop,translated the Gospels from Greek into Gothic using Greek alphabet. It’s known as Silver Codex.Ulfila’s Gospels were 1st published in the 17thc and were thoroughly studied in the 19 and 20thc.

The Teutons after the departure of the Goths, gave rise to the North Germ subgroup of languages. However,they lived relatively isolated and so,their langu and speech didn’t have many dialectal diversions. Their common parent-langu was called Old Norse or Old Scandinavian,and came to us in the form of runes.They were used by North and West Germ tribes.The North Germanic languages, also called Scandinavian languages or Norse, include Danish, Faeroese, Icelandic(old Icelandic written records date from the 12 and 13thc,an age of literary flourishing. They are-the Elder Edda,the Younger Edda and the Old Icelandic sagas), Norwegian, and Swedish. They are spoken by about 20 million people, chiefly in Denmark, the Faeroe Islands, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden.

The West Germanic languages are English, Frisian, Dutch, Flemish, Afrikaans, German, and Yiddish. They are spoken as a primary language by about 450 million people throughout the world. Among the dead West Germanic languages are Old Franconian, Old High German, and Old English (or Anglo-Saxon) from which Dutch, German, and English respectively developed.

Modern Germanic languages Genetically, English belongs to the Germanic or Teutonic group of languages, which is one of the twelve groups of the I-E linguistic family. The Germanic languages in the modern world are as follows:

English – in Great Britain, Ireland, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the South African Republic, and many other former British colonies;

German – in the Germany, Austria, Luxemburg, part of Switzerland;

Netherlandish – in the Netherlands and Belgium (known also as Dutch and Flemish respectively);

Afrikaans – in the South African Republic;

Danish – in Denmark;

Swedish – in Sweden and Finland;


Date: 2015-01-29; view: 1297

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