By Donka Minkova
Phonological evolution is a massive component to the general historical past of the language; the subject material is either major by itself phrases and appropriate in curricular phrases. This ebook describes the segmental and prosodic adjustments within the heritage of English, offers analyses of those alterations either as phonological occasions and when it comes to the evolution of interlocking features of past English and highlights the relevance of the themes and probably generate additional curiosity through projecting ancient phonological switch onto Present-Day English and its types. the improvement of the English sound process is definitely one of the top studied a part of the historical past of the language, even if no up to date, student-friendly survey exists: this booklet fills the distance.
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Extra info for A Historical Phonology of English
Starting roughly in the second half of the fourteenth century, the reemergence of English as the leading language in all spheres of life led to the formation of more systematic scribal practices, especially in the crafting of official documents in which dialectal differences were levelled out in favour of a unified written standard. The process of standardising English thus has its roots and primary motivation in the events that usher in the re-establishment of English as the language of written communication.
Voicing is dependent on the movement of the glottis; it is caused by vibration of the vocal cords and narrowing of the glottis; the glottis itself is the space between the vocal cords. Since the contrast depends on action in the larynx and the state of the glottis, questions of voicing can also be discussed with THE SOUNDS OF ENGLISH 27 reference to laryngeal or glottal specifications. Another related property of note is that voiced consonants require less muscular effort; they are also described as lenis consonants, as opposed to fortis consonants, which are articulated with stronger effort.
Another way in which the presence of a French-speaking social elite in England after the Conquest was felt was the shift in modes of versification. As we will see in Chapter 10, OE poetic composition lies firmly within the Germanic alliterative tradition; the verse line was held together by alliteration, which is consistently associated with the first sound of the stressed syllable of a word. In Middle English 14 A HISTORICAL PHONOLOGY OF ENGLISH syllable-counting and end-rhyme, properties characteristic of contemporary Continental versification, became increasingly popular, culminating in the invention of the English iambic pentameter by Chaucer (c.
A Historical Phonology of English by Donka Minkova