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Exploring the English Language

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342) has identified that linguists customarily divide the development period of English language in three major periods. Frst comes the Old English period that remained in vogue from fifth to eleventh century. Ten the Middle English period is prominent historically, ad which stretched from eleventh to fifteenth centuries. Fnally, te Modern English period commenced from the fifteenth century and is in progress still. Te history of English language goes back to the time when three tribes, nmely the Angles, te Saxon, ad the Jutes, ivaded Britain and spread or Anglo-Saxon English language.

Wth time, mny Greek and French words began to be infused in the English language that was influential among people in those days, ad Middle English became the dominant language. I is the general consensus among almost all the historian that French played a dominant role in the development of the English language. Lter on, te period of Modern English language commenced, i the earlier part of which, te social communication of British people with the rest of the world increased and English became more easy as compared to the old or middle English.

Gadually, Bitish Empire expanded and many old English words got modified and new words were included in the vocabulary, ad this modernized vocabulary differentiates the presently influential English language from the old-fashioned English language styles. Tere are numerous linguistic evidences spanning more than 1200 years, wich are a major source of help for those researching on English language history. Al such old documents and literary works highlight the major transformational changes that the English language has gone through from beginning.

example, manings of many words became less inclusive than their earlier meanings, ad words themselves also shifted or progressed towards new word versions. Tis is called semantic shift and narrowing. Acording to Akmajian (2001, p 344), maning changes in many individual words in the context of Old English and Modern English can be observed from the Modern English words hound and dog, bth of which were known as hund and docga in Old English. Mreover, te word “hund” referred to any kind of dog, wile “hound” refers a particular of a dog.

Te word “docga” on the other hand, rferred in Old English to the mastiff breed of dogs, wile presently, “og” refers to any breed of dog. ...

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preview essay on Exploring the English Language
  • Pages: 4 (1000 words)
  • Document Type: Essay
  • Subject: Unsorted
  • Level: Undergraduate
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