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Latin: A Linguistic Introduction

By Renato Oniga and Norma Shifano

Applies the principles of contemporary linguistics to the study of Latin and provides clear explanations of grammatical rules alongside diagrams to illustrate complex structures.

New from Cambridge University Press!


The Ancient Language, and the Dialect of Cornwall, with an Enlarged Glossary of Cornish Provincial Words

By Frederick W.P. Jago

Containing around 3,700 dialect words from both Cornish and English,, this glossary was published in 1882 by Frederick W. P. Jago (1817–92) in an effort to describe and preserve the dialect as it too declined and it is an invaluable record of a disappearing dialect and way of life.

New from Brill!


Linguistic Bibliography for the Year 2013

The Linguistic Bibliography is by far the most comprehensive bibliographic reference work in the field. This volume contains up-to-date and extensive indexes of names, languages, and subjects.

Academic Paper

Title: Alexander Bergs, Social networks and historical sociolinguistics: Studies in morphosyntactic variation in the Paston letters (1421–1503). Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 2005.
Author: Anastassia Zabrodskaja
Email: click here to access email
Institution: Tallinn University
Linguistic Field: Not Applicable
Abstract: Alexander Bergs, Social networks and historical sociolinguistics: Studies in morphosyntactic variation in the Paston letters (1421–1503). Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 2005. Pp. xii, 318. Hb $123.20.

Dedicated to morphosyntactic variation in the late Middle English Paston letters, this book comprises seven chapters, notes, and author and subject indexes. The introductory chapter gives a clear picture of the research goals as well as the book's structure. Analyzing three central linguistic variables – third person plural pronouns, relativization patterns, and light verb constructions – Bergs explains why he has chosen to study variation in the Paston letters using a sociohistorical approach and social network theory. Presenting research material and his object of investigation in chapter 2, the author introduces the notion of historical sociolinguistics. Taking into account extralinguistic evidence, data, and theories, historical sociolinguistics must be viewed as an independent discipline, separate from present-day sociolinguistics and traditional historical linguistics. The third chapter considers ideas, principles, and methods underlying and constituting social network analysis. Giving a comprehensive theoretical background related to the above-mentioned issues, Bergs develops a network for the Paston family from both egocentric and sociocentric perspectives. A detailed description of the corpus used in the study is also presented. According to Bergs, the question of authorship does not play such an important role in morphosyntactic variables as in phonological or graphological ones.


This article appears in Language in Society Vol. 37, Issue 2, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .

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