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The history of the First Foreign Language

This outline history covers the main events in the historical development of English language: the history of its phonetic structure and spelling, the evolution of its grammar system, the growth of its vocabulary and also the changing historical conditions of English speaking communities relevant to language history.


Germanic languages.

Languages can be classified according to different principals: the historical or genealogical classification, groups languages in accordance with their origin from accomant ancestor. Genetically English belongs to Germanic or Teutonic group of languages. Which is one of the twelve linguistic groups. According to the map or the area which languages occupy< Germanic is one of the major groups. The Germanic languages in the modern words are the following: English, German, Netherlands, Africans, Danish, (Flanders), Swedish, Norwegian, Icelandic, Frischian, Faroese, Yiddish. Recently Dutch and Flemich were named as saint languages. Frishient and Faroes are oftenly as dialects. The linguistic independence of Norwegian is questioned, because it’s demixed with Danish. British England and American sometimes looked as independence languages. It is difficult to estimate the number of people speaking Germanic languages, especially in belingvial countries. The number of the English speaking people rage from 250-300 million people. The number total of Germanic people about 400 million people. And the number where English is official language is over 50.


Phonetics. Word stress. The pequile Germanic system of word stress is one of important distinguish … It arrows in P.G period. And was fully or partly retained in several lang. and surved as one of the major causes for many linguistic changes. It is known that proud of G. lang. , their existed two ways of exestuation: musical pitch and force stress. The position of the stress was free and mooveboll. Both this properties of the word assent were changed in P.G Forth stress also could as breath stress became the type of only stress used. And the stress became the first sillable. Which was usually the rud of the word and some time the prefix. This feature was inherited by other G. language The following English and German words illustrate it’s fix position in grammatical form and rising. Become-becoming-othercome

The heavy fix word stress inharitated from P.G has played an important role in the development of G. lang. And especially in phonetic and morphologies changes.

Vowels. Through all the history begging with P.G vowels continence to change. Their undervent different kinds of antiversions: qualiting and quantetive, depended and in depended. Quality chan.-effect of quality of sounds. O-A, P-F


German has often been viewed by non-Germans as a harsh sounding language. That may be due in part to the more guttural pronunciation of certain German alphabet sounds and diphthongs and perhaps even a still lingering effect of old WWII movie stereotypes. Once non-German speakers familiarize themselves with German’s different sounds however, another kind of poetic beauty will unfold before them that has been revered worldwide in the works of many German greats, such as Goethe, Schiller through prose and song.

How does the German alphabet differ from the English alphabet?

Unique Traits of the German Alphabet:
· More than 26 letters in the alphabet - German has a so called extended latin alphabet
· The extra letters are ä, ö, ü and ß

· The pronunciation of some of these letters do not exist in the English language
· Several letters are pronounced more from the back of the throat: g, ch, r (though in Austria the r is trilled).
· The W in German sounds like the V in English
· The V in German sounds like the F in English
· Most of the time the S in German sounds like Z in English when placed at the beginning of a word followed by a vowel. The letter ß is the only letter that will never be at the beginning of a word.

Old English

English evolved from the Germanic languages brought to Britain by the Angles, Saxons, Jutes and other Germanic tribes from about the 5th Century AD. These languages are known collectively as Anglo-Saxon or Old English, which began to appear in writing during the early 8th century AD.

English acquired vocabulary from Old Norse after Norsemen starting settling in parts of Britain, particularly in the north and east, from the 9th century. To this day dialects of English spoken in northern England contain more words of Norse origin than other varieties of English.

Middle English

The Norman invasion of 1066 brought with it a deluge of Norman and Latin vocabulary, and for the next three centuries English became a mainly oral language spoken by ordinary people, while the nobility spoke Norman, which became Anglo-Norman, and the clergy spoke Latin. When English literature began to reappear in the 13th century the language had lost the inflectional system of Old English, and the spelling had changed under Norman influence. For example, the Old English letters þ (thorn) and ð (eth) were replaced by th. This form of English is known as Middle English.

Modern English

By about the 15th century Middle English had evolved into Early Modern English, and continued to absorb numerous words from other languages, especially from Latin and Greek. Printing was introduced to Britain by William Caxton in around 1469, and as a result English became increasingly standardised. The first English dictionary, Robert Cawdrey's Table Alphabeticall, was published in 1604.

During the medieval and early modern periods English spread from England to Wales, Scotland and other parts of the British Isles, and also to Ireland. From the 17th century English was exported to other parts of the world via trade and colonization, and it developed into new varities wherever it went. English-based pidgins and creoles also developed in many places, such as on island in Caribbean and in parts of Africa.


The O.E period characteriste by the existence of the lang. In the formular several dialects. The connection of word was perfomed trough the sgs ending. The word formal was free, and double negative was possible. The first English used runes. 24 in German and 30 in England. The stress was dynamic and shifted to the first syllable and the first word after… 7-8 short vowels, 6-7 long vowels. There four diphthongs ae, io, ie, iou The most frequent ending: aei it different verbs from noun. Consense: labial: p, b, m, f, v ; dental: s, z, t, d, n, r; velar: g, h


6) The Germanic languages are a group of related languages that constitute a branch of the Indo-European (IE) language family. The common ancestor of all the languages in this branch is Proto-Germanic, spoken in approximately the mid-1st millennium BC in Iron Age northern Europe. Proto-Germanic, along with all of its descendants, is characterized by a number of unique linguistic features, most famously the consonant change known as Grimm's law. Early varieties of Germanic enter history with the Germanic peoples settled in northern Europe along the borders of the Roman Empire in the second century.

The most widely spoken Germanic languages are English and German, with approximately 400 million and 100 million native speakers respectively Fact|date=June 2008. The group includes other major languages, such as Dutch with 23 million Fact|date =June 2008 and Afrikaanswith over 16 million speakers Fact|date =June 2008; and the North Germanic languages including Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, Icelandic, and Faroese with a combined total of about 20 million speakers Fact|date=June 2008. In Netherland Frisian is being spoken by the majority of the inhabitants of the province Friesland/Fryslân. The SIL "Ethnologue" lists 53 different Germanic languages.



West Germanic languages
High German languages
standard German
Central German
East Central German
West Central German
Pennsylvania German (spoken by the Amish and other groups in southeastern Pennsylvania)
Upper German
Alemannic German
Swabian German, including Stuttgart
Low Alemannic German, including the area of Lake Constance and Basel German
High Alemannic German, including Zürich German and Bernese German
Highest Alemannic German, including the Bernese Oberland dialects and Walliser German
Austro-Bavarian German
North Bavarian (including Nuremberg)
Middle Bavarian (including Munich and Vienna)
South Bavarian (including Innsbruck, Klagenfurt, and Bolzano, Italy)
Hutterite German (aka "Tirolean")
Yiddish (with a significant influx of vocabulary from Hebrew and other languages, and traditionally written in the Hebrew alphabet)
Wymysorys (with a significant influence from Low Saxon, Dutch, Polish, and Scots)
Low Franconian
Standard Dutch
Old Dutch
Middle Dutch
Modern Dutch Brabantic
Zealandic West Flemish
East Flemish
Hollandic Limburgish
Afrikaans (with a significant influx of vocabulary from other languages) Low German West Low German
Northern Low Saxon
East Frisian Low Saxon Westphalian language Eastphalian language East Low German
Plautdietsch (Mennonite Low Saxon)
Anglo-Frisian Old Frisian Frisian Stadsfries language
West Frisian language (spoken in the Netherlands) Clay Frisian (Klaaifrysk)
Wood Frisian (Wâldfrysk)
South Frisian (Súdhoeks)
Southwest Frisian (Súdwesthoeksk)
Westers East Frisian language (spoken in Germany) Saterland Frisian language
Several extinct Frisian variants
North Frisian language (spoken in Germany)
Mainland Frisian
Mooring Goesharde Frisian
Wiedingharde Frisian Halligen Frisian
Karrharde Frisian
Island Frisian Söl'ring Fering Öömrang
Old English
Middle English (significant influx of words from Old French) Early Modern English
Modern English British English (English English, including Northern English, Midlands English, Southern English, Welsh English, Scottish English, and others) and Irish English North American English (American English and Canadian English) Australian English and New Zealand English South African English
South Asian English (Indian English) South East Asian English (Philippine English, Singapore English, and Malaysian English)
West Indian English (Caribbean English) Early Scots [A term widely used by scholars of the language, for example, ******** Middle Scots
Modern Scots
Northern Scots
North Northern (Scandinavian influence via Norn)
Mid Northern (North East Scots or Doric) South Northern Central Scots North East Central
South East Central West Central South West Central Scots
Ulster Scots
Southern Scots
Insular Scots (Scandinavian influence via Norn) Yola
North Germanic
Proto-Norse Old Norse
West Scandinavian
Norwegian (genealogically Western branch, but heavy influence from Eastern branch) Bokmål (official written standard)
Høgnorsk (unofficial written standard) Landsmål (unofficial written standard) Nynorsk (official written standard)
Riksmål (unofficial written standard)
Vestlandsk Sørlandsk
South-West Norwegian
Bergen Norwegian/Bergensk
North-West Norwegian Nord-Norsk Helgeland Norwegian
Nordland Norwegian
Troms Norwegian
Finnmark Norwegian
East Norwegian
Vikvær Norwegian
Middle East Norwegian
Oppland Norwegian Østerdal Norwegian
Midland Norwegian
Gudbrandsdal Norwegian Valdres and Hallingdal
Western Telemark Norwegian
Eastern Telemark Norwegian
Trøndelag Norwegian
Outer Trøndelag Norwegian
Inner Trøndelag Norwegian
Namdal Norwegian
South-eastern Trøndersk
Jamtlandic (also considered Norrlandic)
Icelandic Old Icelandic
Modern Icelandic Gøtudanskt("Faroese Street Danish") Faroese Norn (extinct)
Shetland Norn (extinct)
Orkney Norn (extinct)
East Scandinavian Danish
Rigsdansk/Rigsmål Eastern Danish (Amager, Bornholm, Skåne, Halland, Blekinge) Bornholmsk Scanian
Island Danish
North Jutlandic
East Jutlandic
West Jutlandic Sønderjysk (Danish Slesvig, German Schleswig)
Elfdalian Old Swedish Modern Swedish Svealand Swedish
Norrlandic Götish East Swedish/Finland Swedish South Swedish
Götalandic Old Gutnish
Modern Gutnish

Alternate classification of contemporary North Germanic languages
Insular Scandinavian

Continental Scandinavian Danish, Norwegian, Swedish





8) There were about three hundred strong verbs in O.E. They were native words descending from P.G with parallels in other OG languages: many of them had a high frequency of occurrence and were basis items of the vocabulary widely used in word derivation and word comppounding


Class 1
This class is characterized by a long vowel single consonant root syllable, specifically -íC where C is any singular cosonant. The root vowels and their changes go as follows.

Present: -í-
Past Sg.: -á-
Past Pl.: -i-
Past Part.: -i-

Examples of this class of verb are dífan, dráf, drifon, drifen (drive), rísan, rás, rison, risen (rise), bídan, bád, bidon, biden (abide).

Class 2
This class was actually characterized by two present tense vowel roots, -éo and -ú, that followed ablaut in exactly the same fashion. They are also of the -VC template. There is no way of telling whether a verb has a present tense form with -ú or with -éo from looking at its other ablauted forms; their roots of development go a very long way into ancient Indo-European history from different vowel grades.

Present: -éo-/-ú-
Past Sg.: -éa-
Past Pl.: -u-
Past Part.: -o-

Examples include dréopan, dréap, drupon, dropen (drip), slúpan, sléap, slupon, slopen (slip), and léogan, léag, lugon, logen (lie).

Class 3
Things looked pretty easy until now, didn't they? No longer. The third class of strong verbs is characterized by the template -VCC, where V is a short vowel. In distant times before Old English was written, the original pattern of ablaut was e, a, u, and u. Through process of vowel change, this class split into five different sub-categories . The linguistic phenomona behind these changes can be traced, for example category 1 illustrates the fronting of the short a in West Germanic languages, while category 3 undergoes a process called 'breaking' related to the presence of a syllabic r in the stem. Mostly though, one will just need to memorize the principle parts of strong class three verbs. Here are the subcategories.

Category 1
Present: -e-
Past Sg.: -æ-
Past Pl.: -u-
Past Part.: -o-

Category 2
Present: -e-
Past Sg.: -ea-
Past Pl.: -u-
Past Part.: -o-

Category 3
Present: -eor-
Past Sg.: -ear-
Past Pl.: -ur-
Past Part.: -ur-

Category 4
Present: -ie-
Past Sg.: -ea-
Past Pl.: -u-
Past Part.: -o-

Category 5
Present: -i-
Past Sg.: -a-
Past Pl.: -u-
Past Part.: -u-

Examples for all five categories are bregdan, bægd, brugdon, brogden (shake), helpan, healp, hulpon, holpen (help), beorcan, bearc, burcon, burcen(bark), gielpan, gealp, gulpon, golpen (boast), and drincan, dranc, druncon, druncen (drink).

Class 4
Class four strong verbs are characterized by a short -e- followed by a liquid consonant, either 'r' or 'l'.

Present: -e-
Past Sg.: -æ-
Past Pl.: -áé-
Past Part.: -o-

Examples include stelan, stæl, stáélon, stolen (steal) and beran, bær, báéron, boren (bare). There aren't many of them.

Class 5
Almost exactly the same as class four, except that the short -e- was followed by a different single consonant. The Past participle changed to -e-, in this case. Examples include sprecan, spæc, spéácon, sprecen (speak) and awrecan, awræc, awréácon, awrecen (recite). Again, not many of these.

Class 6
This class had a short -a- in the root syllable. Because of a tendency to to front the 'a' in West Germanic languages, the past participle form often took an -æ- (more natural than the -a-). By analogy with the infinitive, however, this was sometimes morphed back into an -a- again. In other words, just memorize the past participle form, it will cause less headaches.

Present: -a-
Past Sg.: -ó-
Past Pl.: -ó-
Past Part.: -a-/-æ-

Examples include wascan, wósc, wóscon, wascen (wash), bacan, bóc, bócon, bacen (bake), and faran, fór, fóron, færen (go).

Class 7
Regular root syllable? Predictable past participle? BWAHAHAhahahahaha..ha.. heh heh *cough*. Anything could be a class seven verb, no matter the root syllable. Memorization is your friend.

Present: you wish
Past Sg.: -é-
Past Pl.: -é-
Past Part.: start weeping now

Examples include láétan, lét, léton, láéten (let), feallan, féoll, féollon, feallen (fall), and bláwan, bléow, bléowon, bláwen (blow).




Changes of stressed vowels in Early Old English

The development of vowels in Early OE consisted of the modification of separate vowels, and also of the modification of entire sets of vowels. The change begins with growing variation in pronunciation, which manifests itself in the appearance of numerous allophones: after the stage of increased variation, some allophones prevail over the others and a replacement takes place. It may result in the splitting of phonemes and their numerical growth, which fills in the “empty boxes” of the system or introduces new distinctive features. It may also lead to the merging of old phonemes, as their new prevailing allophones can fall together.

Independent changes. Development of monophthongs

The PG short [a] and the long [a:], which had arisen in West and North Germanic, underwent similar alterations in Early OE: they were fronted, and in the process of fronting, they split into several sounds. The principal regular direction of the change – [a] > [æ] and [a:] > [æ:] – is often referred to as the fronting or palatalisation of [a, a:]. The other directions can be interpreted as positional deviations or restrictions to this trend: short [a] could change to [o] or [ā] and long [a:] became [o:] before a nasal; the preservation of the short [a] was caused by a back vowel in the next syllable.

Development of diphthongs

The PG diphthongs – [ei, ai, iu, eu, au] – underwent regular independent changes in Early OE; they took place in all phonetic conditions irrespective of environment. The diphthongs with the i-glide were monophthongised into [i:] and [a:], respectively; the diphthongs in –u were reflected as long diphthongs [io:], [eo:] and [ea:].

Assimilative vowel changes: Breaking and Diphthongization

The tendency to assimilative vowel change, characteristic of later PG and of the OG languages, accounts for many modifications of vowels in Early OE. Under the influence of succeeding and preceding consonants some Early OE monophthongs developed into diphthongs. If a front vowel stood before a velar consonant there developed a short glide between them, as the organs of speech prepared themselves for the transition from one sound to the other. The glide, together with the original monophthong formed a diphthong. The front vowels [i], [e] and the newly developed [æ], changed into diphthongs with a back glide when they stood before [h], before long (doubled) [ll] or [l] plus another consonant, and before [r] plus other consonants, e.g.: [e] > [eo] in OE deorc, NE dark. The change is known as breaking or fracture. Breaking produced a new set of vowels in OE – the short diphthongs [ea] and [eo]; they could enter the system as counterparts of the long [ea:], [eo:], which had developed from PG prototypes. Breaking was unevenly spread among the OE dialects: it was more characteristic of West Saxon than of the Anglian dialects. Diphthongisation of vowels could also be caused by preceding consonants: a glide arose after palatal consonants as a sort of transition to the succeeding vowel. After the palatal consonants [k’], [sk’] and [j] short and long [e] and [æ] turned into diphthongs with a more front close vowel as their first element, e.g. OE scæmu > sceamu (NE shame). In the resulting diphthong the initial [i] or [e] must have been unstressed but later the stress shifted to the first element, which turned into the nucleus of the diphthong, to conform with the structure of OE diphthongs. This process is known as “diphthongisation after palatal consonants”.

Palatal mutation

Mutation is the change of one vowel to another through the influence of a vowel in the succeeding syllable. The most important series of vowel mutations, shared in varying degrees by all OE languages (except Gothic), is known as “i-Umlaut” or “palatal mutation”. Palatal mutation is the fronting and raising of vowels through the influence of [i] or [j] in the immediately following syllable. The vowel was fronted and made narrower so as to approach the articulation of [i]. Due to the reduction of final syllables the conditions which caused palatal mutation, that is [i] or [j], had disappeared in most words by the age of writing; these sounds were weakened to [e] or were altogether lost. The labialized front vowels [y] and [y:] arose through palatal mutation from [u] and [u:], respectively, and turned into new phonemes, when the conditions that caused them had disappeared (cf. mūs and m¢s). The diphthongs [ie, ie:] were largely due to palatal mutation and became phonemic in the same way, though soon they were confused with [y, y:]. Palatal mutation led to the growth of new vowel interchanges and to the increased variability of the root-morphemes: owing to palatal mutation many related words and grammatical forms acquired new root-vowel interchanges. We find variants of morphemes with an interchange of root-vowels in the grammatical forms mūs, m¢s (NE mouse, mice), bōc, bēc (NE book, books), since the plural was originally built by adding –iz. (Traces of palatal mutation are preserved in many modern words and forms, e.g.mouse – mice, foot – feet, blood – bleed; despite later phonetic changes, the original cause of the inner change is i-umlaut).




Date: 2015-01-29; view: 1227

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