This book helps students of English and linguistics to place the language
of the period 1500-1700 in its historical context as a language with a
common core but also as one which varies across time, regionally and
socially, and according to register. The volume focuses on the structure of
what contemporaries called the General Dialect - its spelling, vocabulary,
grammar and pronunciation - and on its dialectal origins. The book also
discusses the language situation and linguistic anxieties in England at a
time when Latin exerted a strong influence on the rising standard language.
The volume includes:
*the major changes in English from the 15th to the 18th century
*emphasis on long-term linguistic developments
*sources for the study of Early Modern English
*illustrations ranging from drama and personal letters to trials and early
*exercises encouraging further exploration of the changing English language.
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