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It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

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Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Academic Paper

Title: A comparative approach to syntactic change in the history of English
Author: C. Jan-Wouter Zwart
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: Rijksuniversiteit Groningen
Linguistic Field: Syntax; Historical Linguistics
Subject Language: English
Abstract: This programmatic article suggests that crucial aspects of syntactic change in the history of English derive from the resetting of a single parameter, the pied piping parameter. Whereas Old English (and the Modern Continental West Germanic languages) treats VP material individually, yielding characteristic patterns of object, particle, and verb placement, Modern English treats the VP as a collective, moving it to a position to the left of certain ‘low’ adverbs and adverbials. The shift from individual to collective movement is described in detail, with its repercussions on the position of the verb, its object(s), and the verbal particle. The emergence of a zero reflexive and the development of have as the exclusive perfect auxiliary are suggested to be long-term effects of the shift from individual to collective movement.


This article appears IN English Language and Linguistics Vol. 9, Issue 1.

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