nil.enroll(aetheric_username, quantum_class_id) (adric) wrote,
nil.enroll(aetheric_username, quantum_class_id)

Paper Discussion

So, for class I am engaged in discussion of my paper with another student, A. I'm working on answering her first batch of questions. She's in italics.

On the first page of your paper you state that the first languages of the British Isles were used by the Celtic tribes. After being invaded by the Romans and then by the Anglo-Saxon Germanic tribes, the Celtic tribes had adopted some of the languages of their invaders and English was beginning to form. Is this accurate? If not, could you clarify my statement?

That seems accurate. Old English formed from the interactions of the languages of the German tribes and their adoption of the Latin alphabet. The Celtic languages did absorb some words from Latin during the Roman occupation.

1. Could you explain what you mean when you say Old English is fully inflected and had a complex system of at least five cases?

Work in Progress

2. On page 2 you say that the Anglo-Saxon language was originally written in the Norse futark runic alphabet. I am a little unclear of what the Norse futark runic alphabet is. Could you please explain exactly what it is and where it came from?

Sorry, I should've used the more common spelling of futhark, so named for the first six characters (F, U, Th, A, R, K). Specifically the Elder Futhark runic system was used by both the Germanic tribes (Angles, Saxons, Jutes) and the Norsemen (who spoke Old Norse) who invaded Britain. One of the significant points of Old English is the switch from Futhark to the Latin alphabet, and the Latin alphabet is credited with the triumph of Old English over Old Norse in the time of the Danelaw, the Danish occupation.

There is a lot of material on the WWW about Futhark, but much of it is concerned with the historical and modern use of the rune script for minor divination in the Asatru magical system ("casting the runes"). Here are a couple links that show the alphabet with as little religious data as I could easily find. Sorry.

3. On page 4 you talk about the Great Vowel Shift and the changes in phonology and morphology. Could you explain what brought about the Great Vowel Shift, in what period of time it occurred, and how it helped to change old English into Middle English?

Work In Progress


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