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ant_102_lecture_07_2011_finalsm - A reminder of some things...

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A reminder of some things we have already covered... 1. Structure: Languages can be described and compared in terms of structure - e.g. agglutinating, inflectional, analytic etc.. 2. Traditional transmission: “Human genes carry the capacity to acquire a language, and probably also a strong drive toward such acquisition, but the detailed conventions of any one language are transmitted extragenetically by learning and teaching.” Hockett
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Structure + Traditional transmission = change
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Change over time is inevitable given that transmission from one generation is “extra- genetic” - a matter of learning.
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Where did English come from and where is it going?
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Slang
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Evidence for the PIE Family
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Proto-Indo European Expansion circa 3500 BC
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Beowulf is an epic poem that we know about from a single manuscript which was written some time between 700 and 1000 AD.
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Although the manuscript contains a mix of different dialect forms it predominantly uses West Saxon dialect of Old English.
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Chaucer - The Canterbury Tales Written at the end of the 14th century in what we call Middle English. The tales (mostly in verse, although some are in prose) are told as part of a story-telling contest by a group of pilgrims as they travel together on a journey from Southwark to the shrine of Saint Thomas Becket at Canterbury Cathedral.
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The Canterbury Tales, General Prologue, ll. 1-18 Whan that Aprill with his shoures soote The droghte of March hath perced to the roote, And bathed every veyne in swich licour Of which vertu engendred is the flour; Whan Zephirus eek with his sweete breeth Inspired hath in every holt and heeth The tendre croppes, and the yonge sonne Hath in the Ram his halve cours yronne, And smale foweles maken melodye, That slepen al the nyght with open ye (So priketh hem Nature in hir corages); Thanne longen folk to goon on pilgrimages, And palmeres for to seken straunge strondes, To ferne halwes, kowthe in sondry londes; And specially from every shires ende Of Engelond to Caunterbury they wende, The hooly blisful martir for to seke, That hem hath holpen whan that they were seeke.
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