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Words:Native and Borrowed

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     Words:Native and Borrowed Words:Native and Borrowed Document Transcript

    • Chapter 3 WORDS: NATIVE AND BORROWEDOLD ENGU5EI AND В КРОНЫOf ah the aspects of language that charge through time—pronunciation,spelling, usage, grammar, meaning, and vocabulary—meaning and vocabularyare the most sensitive to the external social and historical forces that deter-mine which words a culture preserves from its own heritage and which wordsit borrows from others. Particular meanings change themostidiosyncratically.We could never have predicted that the meaning once attached to dweltwould shift from " lead into error" to its current sense. There are some largegeneralizations we can make about how meanings change, but they arerelatively few. The total lexicon of a language, however, is a very accurate linguisticbarometer to the broad social and historical changes in the history of aculture. Given the relevant cultural information, we could have predictedfairly accurately the general makeup of our ModE vocabulary and its sources.We know that some kinds of words arc so durable that they will for centuriesr esist the most violent vicissitudes of time: hand, foot, mother, father, head,heart, sun, moon, sleep, eat, and so on. Other words predictably disappear:OE wergild, the money a murderer had to pay to the family of his victims; 41
    • 42 WORDS ANDOE к и т , a hairy garment; ОС freox, a hurting spear. Cultural necessity hasforced other words into the language through borrowing, derivation, orcreation: machine» cab, crime, jazz, etiquette, chocolate albino, ghetto, syrup,candy, shawl, jungle, iycoon> taboo, tote, blender, television, retrorocket.The Origin nf Words How and where the first words originated has always puzzled linguists and philosophers. When Socrates and Hermogcncs debated the question2000 years ago, they argued whether words related naturally to the thingsthey named. It is it notion that helps explain much of the magic and folkbelief found almost everywhere in the world. The Egyptians, for example,gave everyone two names, a public name and a secret one; they believed ifsomeone knew a persons real name, he would have power over the person.In other cultures, word-magic takes the form of taboos against uttering thename of a god, or the name of certain relatives, or even words that sound likethose words. (60) The relationship between a word and its referent is for the most partarbitrary. The shape or sound of a word has no natural relationship to thething it names. There may be a narrow range of words that could illustratephonetic imitation: boom, clangs hiss, screech, and so on. And a few othersmay illustrate principles of conventionalized phonetic symbolism: Teeny issmaller than tiny, for example. But among the hundreds of thousands ofEnglish words, they are a very tiny (even teeny) minority. So if primitive mandid create words by imitating sounds around him, the words have changed sogreatly that almost all traces of the original association have disappeared.The sound of the word dog does not resemble one. The other speculated sources are equally problematical: the grunts andgroans of work, cries of joy and sorrow, sounds made by the tongue imitatingthe shape of an object. Nor does it help to study the language of the mostprimitive peoples in the jungles of South America or the Philippines, Suchlanguages are as mature, as complex, as expressive for the needs of theirspeakers as any modem European, African, or Asian language. Thus what we must begin with as we seek out the history of any specificlanguage are not speculations about fancied linguistic prehistory, but the"givens," the oldest words that we can trace back to the earnest texts. Oldest Words in Knglish In English, the oldest data are the words we can find in written texts andcarved monuments surviving from the Old English period (c. A.D. 450-e, 1100). 3.1: While it is not easy to explain why every item among the wordsleft to us from OE should have endured, been replaced or lost, we can make
    • WORDS Г NATIVE AND RORROWEn 43 some general preliminary observations if we examine this Ikt of words. Those starred have beer completely lest from the language. The others are direct ancestors of the Modern English word found in parentheses. Why have we lost some and retained others? * coward (consecrated bread used as a lest for truth), "dolgbot (compensa- tion for wounding), wtf (wife), jod (food), *pqft (bench for rowers), *scofa (a hairy garment), stars (stone), *peox (hunting spear), winter (winter), *eafor (tenant obligation to king to convey goods), god (good), *fiytme(& hiood-letting instrument), wster(water), *feohfang(the offence of bribe-taking), brodor (brother). *eam (mothers brother), *nrsed (quick), *barda (beaked ship), com (corn), blod (blood), hand (hand), gntnd (ground), kind (land), *faSe (fathers sister), win (wine), heorte (heart), keo/od (head), lufit (love), siepan (sleep), *steting (hunting rights), silian (sit), *zwitl(a narrow-necked basket),> A Note on Pronunciation: The letters in OE had roughly the following values. <5> and <в> were pronounced like <th> in thing when they occur at the beginning or end of a syllable or next to a <p>, <t>, <c>, or <h>. Otherwise they are pronounced like <th> in the, <f> and <s> were pronounced like <f> and <s> in fit and sit at the beginning or end of a syllable or next to a <p>, <t>, <c>, or <h>. Otherwise they were- pronounced like <v> and <z> respectively. <sc> were pronounced like <sh) in ship before Lhe Setters <i> and <e), like <sk) in skip elsewhere. At the end of a word or before a consonant (h> had the German quality of <ch> in Back. Before or after <i> or <e>, <g> was like a heavily aspirated <y> in yield; before or after back vowels <a>, <o), and <u>, it was pronounced like the voiced equivalent of German <ch). Otherwise it was like ModE <g) in grass. <g> was always pronounced after <n>, as in ModE fonger. OF. vowels were either long or short, but since OE manuscripts did notindicate quantity by diacritical marks or spelling, we have not used lengthmarks here. The vowels have their continental values: <i> as in see or sit;<e> as in bate or bet; <ж> as in bar от a lengthened pronunciation of bad;<a> as in hot or a lengthened pronunciation of hod; <o> as in bought or boat;<4> as in рш от pool. In early OE, <y> was like a long or short German <u),but in later OH. iL represented the same values as <i>.THE MOST DISTANT ORIGINS: INDO-FCUROPEANIf we can infer a good deal about an older culture from the words it no longeruses, we can also discover a good deal from the words it passes on. From thew d in Problem 3.] and from others, we know that those which have been
    • 44 WORDS AND MEANINGSpreserved cover some of the most basic objects, actions, and concepts ofdaily Jife, words like hand, food, wife, sun, hause, stone, go, sing, eat, see, sleep,good, wise, cold, sharp, in, on, off, ot>er. These concepts are so independent ofparticular cultures, so basic to human life that it is almost certain we wouldfind in ail languages tbaL words for these concepts have been passed on fromgeneration to generation for centuries, pronounced and spelled differently,perhaps, but basically the " same" word. (3,44,128)PROBLEM 3.2: Words from several languages that refer to roughly the sameconcepts are shown in Table 3.1. What do you conclude from the fact that insome cases, among several languages, roughly the same mean ing is representedby words that are rather similar to one another, but in other cases are notVThat is, night is rather close to Sanskrit nakiam but very different fromJapanese ban.FROBI-FM 3.3: Here are some words in various languages for aluminum:French: alamtttum, Spanish: atuminio* Italian: вНшптю, Dutch: aluminium,Danish: aluminium. Polish: aluminjum, Hungarian: aluminium, Turkish:аШттуот, Indonesian: aluminium, Russian: alyununi, Arabic: akminyoum,Japanese: aruminyuumu. Why are they alike ? As Problem 3.3 demonstrates, words can resemble one another fromlanguage to language because they have been borrowed from some commonsource. Hut when we consider the likelihood of borrowing the word foraluminum and the likelihood of borrowing words so basic and common asmow, night, hundred, and so on, we can also tentatively reject borrowing asan explanation of widespread similarities among the most common words indifferent languages. The more plausible explanation assumes that in eachlanguage, the words must have been inherited from some common ancestorlanguage, and that through time, in different descendant languages, the formsof the words gradually changed. Once we establish the principle that similar words with similar meanings(or meanings which at one time we might speculate were similar) may bedescended from some common but now lost ancestor form, it becomespossible to reconstruct in very rough outline some of those earlier ancestralwords. If, for example, we compare the word for mother in the languages wesuspect are related to a single ancestor, we can create a form from which therecorded ancient and modem words for mother can be consistently derived.Compare these words: English mother, Dutch tnoeder, Icelandic mofyr,Danish moder, Irish mdthir, Russian mate, Lithuanian mote, Latin mater,Persian madur, Sanskrit matt: From the features these share, we could postu-late as the parent form this hypothetical root: * mater. Lach letter in the rootis a symbol from which we can derive by means of a set of phonological rules
    • COGNATE AND NON-COGNATE WORDSEnglish night snow seven foot fish heart hundred ten toothGerman nacht schnee siebtn fuss usch herz hundert zehn zahnDutch nacht sneeuw zeven voet vis hart honderd ticn tandSwedish natt sno sju fot iisk hjarta hundra tio tandLatin noctis nlvis septein pcdis piscis uordis cenlum decem dcntisFrench nuiL neige sepc pied poisson CftUT cent di?t dentSpanish nouhc nieve sielft pie pescado corazon dcnto diez dienteItalian notte neve scltc piede ренсе cuore cento dieci denteRumanian noapte zapada sapte picior peste inima suta 2£СЙ dinteGreek nuktos nipha hepta pod os psari kardia hekaton cfeka odontosPolish noc snieg siedem stopa ryba serce Mo dziesitji TabCzech noc snih sedm no ha ryba sidce sto deset zubRussian noch snyek sycm naga riba syertse sto dyiisit zupSanskrit nakta snehai sapfca pal tnatsyah hftl- satam dasa dantHungarian ejszaka ho het lab hal sziv szaz tiz fogFinnish yo lumi seitseman jalka kala sydan sata kymmenen liammaaTurkish gcoe kar yedi ayak balik kalb yuz on disArabic lay la gal id sabaa qadam samak qalb maah aiihara finSwahili usiku thcluji saba niguu samaki moyo niia kuma jinoJapanese ban yuki shichi ashi sakana shin hyaku juu haChinese wan hsueh chi chiao yii hsin pai shih che
    • 46 WORDS AND MEANINOSthe sounds of cognate words found in dcsccndanL languages. It does notnecessarily represent the way the ancestor word was actually pronounced atany given moment in our linguistic prehistory, though it very likely isreasonably close to it. Certainly, Indii-European, the name of the reconstructed hypotheticalcommon ancestor Language, was itself once a dialect or collection of dialectsof some even more distant progenitor. Some linguists have attempted—andfailed—to group them with the Hamito-Semitic languages (including Arabic,Hebrew, Aramaic, Coptic, Berber, and the North African Cushitic dialects)or the Finno-Ugric (Finnish and Hungarian). But no one has found enoughevidence to confidently relate the large and scattered group of modernIndo-European languages with any other language family.PROBLEM 3.4; We have seen that from OE words and their meanings, we carideduce something about Anglo-Saxon culture, even if we had no firsthandknowledge of England, its location, or its climate. OE words for referentslike the ocean, winter, ships, deer, fish, oak trees, chalk, and so on would leadus to a Northern European location somewhere close to the sea. Numerouswords for concepts in law suggest an elaborate legal code based on duty <sndpayments. Words for mothers brother and fathers brother suggest a kinshipsystem more complex than ours and one that seems to emphasise malekinship structures. Here are some data (some of it misleading) about words common toIndo-European languages, plus some geographical, botanical, and sociologicaldata that wiil allow a rough guess about the general area of the originalJndo-European homeland. (1) Sanskrit, the oldest of the IE languages withextensive extant documents (с. 150Пв.с.) was spoken in Northern India.(2) Tobacco, referring to a plant now found around the eastern end of theMediterranean, is found in almost all modern IE languages. 0) Cognates forthe following wfinis or other words for their referents are found in a widevariety of IH languages: snow, freezing cold, winter, summer, spring: oak,beech, birch, willow; bear, wolf, otter, beaver, weasel, deer, rabbit, mouse, ox,horse, sheep, goat, pig, dog, snake, tortoise, ant, eagle, hawk, owl, herd,salmon, cow, udder; cheese, mead (a fermented drink containing honey);wheel, <ixleL door, timber, thatch, yoke, wagon, bronze, ore; seed, sow, sew,weave; father, mother, son, daughter, brother, sister, widow, womansrelatives by marriage; the numbets one through ten and the number onehundred, ^4) Cognates for the following words or their referents are notfound in a wide variety of IE languages: monkey, elephant, camel, tiger;olive, palm tree, desert, rice, bamboo, grain, furrow, wheat, mow: gold, iron,steel: ocean, sea, ship: king, mans relations by marriage such as scm-iti-iaw,(5) The silver birch is found in thick forest north of 45° north latitude andwest of the Vistula River. The beech is indigenous cast of Poland and theUkraine and south of 60^ north latitude. (6) Bees are not indigenous to most
    • WORDS: NATIVE AND EJOKROWF.D 47of Asia. (7) The salmon is found in northern European waters and a similarfish is found in the Caspian Sea. (1) What can be reconstructed of the culture of those IE speakers?(2) How might we estimate the approximate age of IE from cognate words? Exactly what happened five or six thousand years ago is, of course,impossible to reconstruct. But it is likely that for some reason, groups amongthe IE tribes began migrating first to the east and south, then in all directionsfrom their original homeland. Not long after, their language, probablyalready more a collection of dialects than a single uniform tongue, began tochange until the dialects became mutually unintelligible languages. With nowritten standard and wiLh virtually no significant contact over what for theirspeakers must have been immensely long distances, nothing interfered withthe natural tendency of every language to change. (7, &, 23,62,2 IS)Iridu-Iluroiiean > West I uropcan It has been thought that IE first split into Eastern and Western branchesbecause of the widespread correspondences of one particular sound changeeast and west of a line running roughly north and south at about 2011 eastlatitude. East of this line, the original *k- sound in IE changed to a sibilant, a sor sh sound. The IE root for hundred, *kmldm, became sat am in Sanskrit,Simtas in Lithuanian, suto in Old Slavic. In the Western branch, it remained k,as in Latin ceirfum and Celtic can/, then changed to ft in the Germanic lan-guages : hundred, or to s or ch in Romance languages: cent, cie 3.5: Does this confirm or contradict your conclusions about thetE homeland? Why? The Eastern branch then "split into two: (I) the Ralto-Slavic, whichincludes Lettish, Lithuanian, and Old Prussian among the Baltic; andBulgarian, Slovenian. Serbo-Croatian, Polish, Czech, and Russian among theSlavic; and (2) the In do-Iranian, which includes modem Persian, Hindi,Bengali, and Romany—the traditional language of the Gypsies (a wordadapted from Egyptian, from whence Ihe Europeans believed them to havecome). The Western branches split into aL least four more branches: Hellenic,Italic, Celtic and Germanic Most scholars also include a dead languagediscovered in the early years of this century: Tuebarian, surprisingly found inCentral Asia, far to the east of the Western IE languages, which it resembles•n some important ways. It was probably spoken by a group that originally
    • 4S WOKDS AMD MEANINGSbelonged to the Western branch but shortly after the Centum-Satem split(as it has bctn called), migrated eastward. One other language, Hitiite,evidence for which has been discovered in Turkey, is also included among theIE languages, though il is unclear exactly how it related to the two mainbranches.PHOELEM 3.6: Here are a few cognates in the Western branch that do netappear in the Eastern. Comment, corn, groin, furrow, bean, meal, maw, sea, salt, fish, elm, finch, starling, swallow. Of the several Hellenic dialects, Attic Greek, spoken in Athens, becamethe standard, a natural consequence of its being the political and culturalcenter of the early Western world. From the Italic descended two dead lan-guages, Oscan and Umbrian, and Latin, from which descended French,Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, and Rumanian. Celtic split into the extinctGallic, Gaelic (the ancestor of Manx, Scots Gaelic, and Irish Gaelic),Britannic (the ancestor of the now dead Cornish and Pictish), the dyingBreton, and the mildly robust Welsh, > West European > Germanic > West Germanic The most important subgrouping for our purposes is Germanic. Itsearliest records go back to some fourth-century Scandinavian inscriptionsand a translation (by Bishop Ulfilas [с, 311-3&1]) of parts of the Bible intoGothic, a now extinct East Germanic language. The largest body of earlyliterature appears in OE after A D . 700, and in Old Icelandic after 1100. Germanic is conventionally divided into three branches on the basis ofcertain phonological and grammatical changes that occurred before aboutA.D. MM): (]) East Germanic, which includes the dead Gothic; (2) NorthGermanic, which includes two groups: (a)Icelandic, Norwegian,and Faeroese(from the Faeroesean Islands); and (b) Danish and Swedish; and finally(3) West Germanic. This includes Dutch, Flemish, Afrikaans, Low German,modern standard German, Yiddish, Frisian, and English.PROBLEM 3.7: Cognates of these words are found only in the Germaniclanguages. Comment, broth,, brew, dough, knead, loaf, wheat, gold, silver, lead, tin, buy, ware, worth; borough, king, earl; book, lore, write, teech (healing): cliff* island, sea, sound (as in Puget Sound), strand (beach); whale, sea! (the animal); ship, steer, sail, north, east, south, west.
    • K: NATIVE AND BORROWED 49PROBLEM 3.8: (I) What is dangerous about relying on negative evidence inattempts to reconstruct cultures or geographical origins from linguistic delta?That is, what does it prove when a number of languages known to havedescended from the same ancestor language are shown not to share cognatewords for fish! What does it indicate when we discover that cognate wordsfrom the root for hand are found only in Germanic languages? (2) Whatfurther problem in cultural reconstruction does the following exampleintroduce? In Great Britain, the word robin denotes a red-breasted member ofthe warbler family. When the colonists arrived in North America, they founda red-breasted member of the thrush family. They called it robin. 3.9: We can show how the Indo-European languages relate to oneanother by means of a tree, as shown in Figure 3.1. This figure is a model of INDO-EUROPEAN WESTERN I -ЛЧ O- I , - • г CELTIC GFft MANIC ITALIC HLLLENiC TOCHARIAN НЛ1 ГО-SLAVIC INDO.UMNIAN HITTITE LAS I NORIH WEST Figure 3.1. Relationship of indc^Huropean Languagesthe historical relationships as well as the linguistic relationships. How doesit lead us to think about the way one language splits into two or morelanguages? What problem does the following diagram and explanationintroduce? (14, 171,204) Western Eastern Celtic Germanic * Balto-Slavic Italic 4 * Hellenic I ndо-Iranian Both the Germanic and Balto-Slavic languages have a similar inflectional ending for instrumental plurals. Other languages have endings related to a different sound. The Celtic and Italic groups have a similar passive voice inflection. The H elleni с а п d I n do- T га ilia n have simila r past tenses. The Hellenic- and Italic share a. characteristic of feminine nouns with masculine suffixes.?• The Germanic and Italic use the perfect tense as a general past lense.
    • 50 WORDS AND MEANINGS From the common vocabulary, archenlogical remains, and the observa- tions of Roman historians, we can sketch the outlines of pre-h is lu He Germanic society. Because their common vocabulary included for the first time many words referring to advanced agriculture, farming must have become more important than it had been. More significantly, the ocean had also become important, ft would be the Viking long-ships that would carry the Germanic warriors across the seas to raid, plunder, and conquer from Britain to Franceto the Mediterranean. Their social and economic organization must also have begun to develop. King, earl, and borough indicate a government and anincipient feudal society; gold, silver, lead, tin, buy., ware, and worth indicate aneconomic life beyond trading in kind. They were a diverse lot, though. They included the Franks, the Goths, theVandals, and the Lombards, all warlike enough to harass France, Spain,Rome, and Africa and give the Teutons their fierce reputation among theRoman historians. They also included the- Germans, who did not wander farfrom Central Germany, and the Northmen (hence- Norseman, which finallybecame ffvrHlOn), who both farmed and sailed. They shared a commonmythology of Odin and Thor and an epic poetry chat celebrated the values ofhonor, loyalty to chief and kinsman in return for their generosity with gifts,and bravery and gtory in battle. (103) From certain La Lin words borrowed into Germanic before Lhe Anglo-Saxons invaded Britain in the fifth century, we know that they must have hadsome contact with Rome, (7,194)PROBLEM 3.10: From these borrowed words, speculate about the kind ofcontact the Germanic tribes had with Rome. The first word in the list is theoriginal Latin word. The second is the OE adapted from Latin with a moderntranslation in parentheses if the word has been lost. The third is the des-cendant ModE word or its closest equivalent. Where the word has been lostin Mod L, the symbol 0 appears. camputti-ettmp (field, battle)-^ tribirtum-infei (tribute)-P mango-mangim (to barter with)-monger (asmfishmonger) Шопёит-toH-iott • poudn-pund- -pound tttitiupassutn (a thousand steps)-m:I-mile ralcem-ceatc-chatk cuprum—ccpor—copper pic- -рк-pitch {the substance) busyrum-buiere-butter ulmim— win—wine
    • WORDS; NATIVE AND BORROWED SI merttha-minle-mmt (the plant) pisum-pisa-pea piper-pipvr-pepper prumtm-plume-plum plan ta-pfanie-pfant balteus-beh-belt soccus-socc-sock catillus-cite{-$ (ModE kmie is borrowed from Danish, which also borrowed il from Latin) plpa-pipe-pipe bsrtna-binf^-bin cuppa-cuppe-cup p&rma—pimne-pnn coquJtta-cycene-kitchen piima-pwn-pirt gi!mfw-gOTWi(gem)-0 (ModE gem is borrowed from French) ltnea-fitie-Une uatiuny-weali-wali febris-fefer-feverP«-Anglo-Saxon Britain Long before these northern Germanic tribes attacked the native Britons(orCelts), the Romans had long since raided, invaded, colonized, and desertedthe island. Julius Caesar (100 B.C.-44 B.C.) invaded Britain twice, failing thefirst time in 55 B.C.; but the nest year with a larger force, he conquered thebland. Though he had invaded Britain to shore up his northern flank, hewas also looking for slaves and tribute. Finding neither in sufficient quantityor quality to justify his effort, he turned from Britain to his problems inGaul, giving the island a brief period of freed о in from Roman domination. Then in A.D. 43, Claudius (10 B.C.-A.D. 54) invaded ihe island, and afterputting down an uprising led by the Celtic Queen Boadicea, finally broughtBritain into the Empire. But because Rome was unwilling to expend the mena 4d effort to conquer the Picts in the wilds of Scotland while being harassedfrom the rear by the still unruly Southern Celts, its sway ended at HadriansWall along the northern bank of the Tyne in the Lowlands. Thus, Romancvviljzatiun was limited to what is now known as the Midlands and theSoutheast, where Romans buiit their walled towns and villas and connectingroads in an attempt to reproduce a sunny Mediterranean life on (what was to
    • 52 WORL>S ANDbecome after a global climatic change) a wet and cloudy distant outpost. (13,34)ANGLO-SAXON BRITAIN: THE BEGINNINGSIt was to be shortlived. Before the end of the fourth century A.D., Scandinavianraiders from the north had already begin to harry the British coast. Simul-taneously, the Picts <ind Brigantes, Celtic tribes from northern Britain, wereburning and looting exposed Roman villas just when Rome had to withdrawmore and more troops to reinforce an uncertain empire on the continent.Finally, unable to assist any further a society now accustomed to relying onprofessional soldiers to defend it, the Roman legions withdrew at the begin-ning of the fifth century, leaving the colonists and Romanized natives to facethe continental Germanic tribes alone. The Saxons who occupied the area between the Rhine River and what istoday Denmark, probably conquered the island in two stages. In the first,beginning around A.D. 449, they swept through Britain in a succession ofplundering and looting raids. Beaching their longboats far up the navigablerivers, they crossed the islands to the Western Sea and back on some of thesame roads the Romans had built to defend themselves with, an irony to berepeated six centuries later when the Normans would use some of the sameroads in their conquest of the Anglo-Saxons. In the second stage, beginning a few years later and lasting until late inthe century, groups from what is now northern Germany, from the Rhine toJutland, arrived to colonize, farm, and trade. These raiders and colonists spoke West Germanic. But because no hardtextual evidence remains from pre-Old English dialects, it is difficult todetermine whether they «.poke one dialect or several. The traditional accountof the invasion is in llisturia Ecclesiastic» Gentis Anglonini, written aboutA.D. 731, almost 300 years after the event, by the Venerable Bede (c, 673-735). Then, about 449 years from our Loads incarnation. Emperor Martianus seized the kingdom and held it for seven years. He was the 46th Emperor after the Emperor Augustus. Then the Angles and Savons were invited by the aforementioned king [Vortigem], and came to Britain in three great ships. At the kings request, they took up dwelling in the east part of the island, so that they should fight for their own territory. And they soon battled with (heir enemies (hat often before battled them from [he north and overran them. And (be Saxons won ihe victory by fighiing. Then they sen: home a messenger and told them to tell of the fertility of this Land and of the Bri(omn cowardice. And they then soon sent a great naval fleet, stronger with warriors than before. It was an invincible host when rhey were united. And ihe Brikms he* Lowed on tliem a dwelling place on condition than they fight
    • WORDS: NATIVE AND UORROWQD S3 for peace and for the welfare of (heir native land and strive against their energies. And they gave them subslance and property for their struggle. They came from three peoples, the boldest of Germany, fro in the Saxons and the Angles and the Jutes. Concerning the Jutes, in the beginning they are in Kent, and the Isle of Wight; that is, the people who dwell in the Wight Island. From ilie Saxons, that is from (he land which people calf Old Saxony, come the East Saxons, and the South Saxons and the West Saxons. And from ihc Anglia come the East Angles and the Middle Angles and (he Mercians and all the Northumbrian people. The land between the Jutes and the Saxons is called the Angulus; it is said that from the time when liiey departed until today, it remains waste. So, it was at first thought that the Jutes came from what we now callJutland; the Angles from the Western side of the Jutish peninsula and theeast bank of the F.I he; Lhe Saxons from Lhe F.I he to perhaps the mouth of theRhine. More recent archeological evidence locates the Angles farther south-east and the Jutes on the coast, near the Frisian Islands off the coast ofGermany and the Netherlands (see Figure 3,2). Figure 3.2. Origins of Invaders and Raiders
    • 54 WORDS AND MEANTNGS Figure 3.3» Old English Dialect Areas But then it is not entirely certain that the Jutes ever existed at all. Twoother Old English commentators never even used the word Jute. They calledall the invaders Saxons, or Angles and Frisians. Bede himself never used Juteagain nor does it occur in Kent plute-names. A rcheo logical evidence, in fact,suggests that Kent was settled by a variety of groups. Indeed, the traditional idea that whole tribes moved en masse from theContinent to Britain may be wrong. It may be that small groups moved toBritain, fanning out from southeastern England to settle the west and north.The dialect areas that existed in Anglo-Saxon England (see Figure 3,3) maynot reflect patterns of settlement from the continent, but rather socialchanges that occurred before Bcdc wrote his history. Believing that distinctdialect areas must have resulted from distinct social groups, Bede may haveassumed that 30П years earlier, the same social and tribal groupings hadmoved intact from the Continent. (37)PROBLEM 5.11: Here is a list of some of the Celtic words borrowed intoEnglish at various periods in the history of English, What do you concludeabout the overall influence of Celtic culture on the Anglo-Saxon or on latersociety4- (57) Pre-Anglo-Saxon: rfce (V i ugdom), ambikt (servant), dun (hill) Post-Anglo-Saxon: bruit (cloak), Ьапкис (piece of cake), gafeluc (small
    • WORDS: NiTIVh: AND BORROWED 55 spear), brocc (badger), carr (rock), luh (lake), ton (rocky peak), dry (magician), clucge (bell),aacor (anchorite), *tt№ (story),гЯе/(Шя hoard), cine (sheet of folded parchment). From I a tcr periods Irish: shamrock, leprechaun, galore, banshee, shillelagh, blarney, colleen, keen (wail). A few more than 40 borrowed into English. Scottish: clan, bog, plaid, slogan, cairn, whiskey. A few more than 30 borrowed into English. Welsh:crag,penguinisuU. A few more than 10 borrowed into English.THE RISK OF ANGLO-SAXON ENGLANDWhatever the sources of the dialect differences in these areas, politicaldivisions developed to create the Anglo-Saxon Heptarchy, seven politicalspheres that often overlapped geographically: Northumbria, Mercia, EastAnglia, Essex, Sussex, Wessex, and Kent. (See Figure 3.4.) The major dialectareas distinguished Northumbrian and Kentish, roughly coinciding with their f) Г Л Yft.y> • &• f Clifiiti ^ О / у j EAST ) *—_ MERCSA /ANGIA/ ) J^v 4 ^WALES ,——1 "^ К llTJT "» Canterbury lLr 4 / X WESSEX ,•Vsussi^/"" CORNWALL p-^Ni^S™^ 3.4. The Anglo-Saxon Heptarchy
    • S6 "WORDS AND MEANINGSpolitical boundaries. But Mercian included both East Anglia and Essex,while West Saxon covered both Wessex and Sussex. During the reign of Aethelberht (c, 552-616), Kents political and culturalsuperiority eclipsed the rest of England. It* close commercial ties with theFrisian traders on the Continent are reflected in the large number of Englishcoins found among [he remains of Frisian settlements and the number ofFnmfcish coins found in Kent. In the seventh century, Kenfs cultural domin-ance extended northward to the Humber, perhaps reflecting its prestigiousposition as a link to the commercial and intellectual life on the Continent, alife which at the time was probably still superior to Englands. In the seventh and eighth centuries, cultural and political supremacypassed from Kent to Northumbria, then to Mercia, and finally to Wessex,where under Alfred (84^-899), there flourished a culture that surpassedanything on the European continent since the brightest days of Rome. Infact, were it not for the West Saxon rise to power and its accompanyingliterary flowering, we would have relatively few texts from before the Normaninvasion. Except for some laws and charters, a Jittle verse, and a few transla-tions of the Bible, the other O£ kingdoms have left us no great number ofdocuments.The Christian Conversion and a National The conversion of England to Christianity began during the reign ofAethelberhC In 597, St. Augustine (?-604) became the first in an army ofmissionaries that wouid Christianize Kent in just seven years. And aftercontesting with Celtic Christianity (the Celts having already been convertedby the Romans), they would win over Northumbria in 664. By 700 Englandcould be called a moderately Christian nation. But Christianity did more to England than institute a new religion thatencouraged new values. It re-introduced Latin and created monastic environ-ments in which learning and scholarship flourished so richly that Europe wassoon sending its students to Canterbury, Jarrow, and York. From the eighthto the eleventh century, southern England was one of the most advancedintellectual communities in the western world. During this period, England also began to develop a national character.From the eighth through the tenth centuries, Old English poetry flowered. Tlwas during this time that the great poems of mixed Christian and Nordicthemes were composed: Beowulf. The Wanderer, The Seafarer, the Caed-monian and Cynewultian poems. The efficient administration of a largeinstitution, the church, provided a model for the secular kings in ihcirattemptsto complement Romes spiritual dominion of England with their worldly one.The organization of townships was roughly coterminous with parishes, eachruled spiritually by a priest who at first was often the chaplain to the local
    • WORDS! NATFVF. AVD BORROWED 57 thcgn (chieftain). The marriage оГ religious laws and secular enforcement created ;i governing institution of potentially great power and wealth. (2, 20ft, 223) ЗЛ2: Irt Problem 3.10 were listed some words borrowed fromLatin during the Germ an ic continental period, before the invasion of Britain.Hud we listed [hem all and divided them into semantic categories, the p r oportions would have been very roughly as follows: Plants and animals: 307 0 Food, vessels, household items: 207Q Buildings, settlements: 12% Dress: 12% Military, legal: 9% Trade, commerce: 97 0 Religious, scholarly: Ъ% Miscellaneous: 5%Altogether, about 170 words were borrowed during this pre-OE period.Below are listed a weighted sampling of OE words adopted from Latin duringthe nest two periods: 404^650, and 650 to the end of the OE period, 400-650 prafost (provost), waster (town), cugfe (cowl), mentel (cloak), cist (chest), pxgel (pail), pott (pot), mwwc (monk), traht (text), cat! (cat), truht (trout), pert* (pear), gfcdene (gladiola), leahtrk (lettuce), xbs{ fir tree), senep (mustard), laser (.Larc, a kind of weed). 11 ii ii nulite (soldiers), cettiur {centurion), yndse (ounce), fenester (window), cluster (cloister), purs (purse), cxppe (cope), coc (cook), setae! (dish), rabbinn (to rage), scrofei (scrofula), credo (creed), discipu! (disciple), mmsse (church mass), papa (pope), xlmesse (alms), eretic (heretic), tnartir (шипут), organ (song), son (musical sound),sfol(school),pbiiosoph (philosopher), comet a (comet), bises (leap year day), ШНовесе (library), paitn (pahn), balsam (balsam), carte (dried fig), iilie (lilyX peoate (peony), ysope (hyssop), cancer (cancer), loppestre (locust), tiger (tiger), fenix (phoenix), camel (caniel). can you conclude about the nature of Lalin-OE contacts ? (7, 194)PROBLEM 3,13: Just as we can discover something about a culture from thewords it ] m lost, so can we tell something from the words it often uses. Heres a sampling of words that occurred very frequently in OE compounds,w ords made up out of two parts to express an idea no single word can,words in Old English like boccrseft (literally book-craft, or literature).
    • SS WORDS ANfJ MEAiSTINUSfolclagu (folk-law. or law of the people), widsst (wide-sea, or ocean). What might you very tentatively speculate about a culture that used words like thesefairly often?1. sumof (summer), winter (winter), Sid (time), corn (corn), lyft (air), raht (night), №j*(ui(wood), wyrm (dragon), bhd (blood).2. gold (gold), isen (iron), burg (dwelling), ham (home), sele (hall), medu (mead), bring (ring), win (wine), tar (learning), lead (song, poem), word (word), botf (book), gieip (boast, fame, pride), ftwrf (treasure), ceap (price, sale).3. wtf (woman), wer (man), ^eow (servant), fread (people, nation), brodor (brother), ceorl (peasant), cyning (king), hfaford (lord), pegn (retainer).4. hell (hell), heofan (heaven), cirice (church), crist (Christ), deofoi(dwW).5. woh (error, iniquity), teona (injury), t&l (blame), syn (sin), sar (sorrow, pain), « 0 (strife, spite), morSor (murder), man (evil deed), bealu (harm), cweahn (death), dead (death), Awfe (error, heresy).6. eufie (ea iy), wynn (joy), gliw (pleasure, sport),7. zsc (spear), йе<а1н (battle), borrf (shield), camp (battle), here (amy), Jn-/r? (army, people), wspen (weapon), guS (war),8. sa: (sea), scip (ship), и?г/ег (water), ;jff (wave).9. /^/(praise), аде (victo ry ) t i™/<fcr (glory, honor).10. gas! (soul), &да (mind), mod (miod).11. (m)nht (right/wrong), 598 (tntti), eald(old), eard (native place).i>KOBi.FM ЗЛ4: What might you guess about a culture that has a kinshipsystem with the following terms? Compare it with Modern English. (ReviewProblem 2.13,) jseder (father), Mudor (mother), sunn (son), detoor (daughter), broSor (brother), sweostor (sister), fsdera (paternal uncle), earn (maternal uncle),/аЭе (paternal aunt), modrige (maternal aunt), tukterga (brothers son), swigra (sisters son), fsikrencnosl (fathers kin), jnodorcym (maternal descent), wmpnedtutrtd (male line), mfttund (female line).The Danish Invasions But as the West Saxons in particular were creating their cultural goldenage, their bin from Denmark, more comfortable in their dragon ships thanthe now-landed Saxons, began in the late eighth century to find easy targetsamong the rich monasteries along the eastern and southern English coast.Finding how defenseless Northumbria and Easi Anglia were, they escalatedtheir raids to a full scale invasion from K5O to 878. By Lhe time the Danes hadoverrun, occupied, and begun to colonize large portions of eastern England,only Wesbcx was able to resist them successfully.
    • WORDS: NATIVE AND BORROWED 59 Canterbury Figure 3.5. The Uanelaw In Я78, King Alfred finally defeated the Danes in the Battle of Ethandun.Jn the subsequent Treaty of Wedmore, the Danes agreed to remain east of aline running roughly from north of Chester to London, an area calledDanelaw (see Figure 3.5), in which the Danes were free to live as Danes underDanish law. (A second Danelaw, which, if anything, would prove to be evenmore significant to the future of England, was established in the PrankishKingdom on the continent directly across from England. It was called, afterthe Northmen or Normans, Normandy.) Having united at least half of England, Alfred, as noted above, set aboutcreating almost single handedly a prose tradition by his various translationsfrom Latin into Old English, both by his own hand and at his direction byothers, by his initiation of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicles, and by the importa-tion of European scholars and books. He also founded the first public schools,creating a literate audience for the literature as well as an educated class ableto administer the growing bureaucracy of a growing state, Iftfact, AI fred organized A n glo-Saxo n go vcrn m ent so we! I th at the Danesin their Drmelaw, who were less well organized than the English, were finallyunable to withstand the unified political and military attacks by Alfreds son,Edward ine Elder (c. 870-924), and his son, Atheistan (c. 895-940). Tn 957,Edwards grandion, Edgar (У44-975) became ruler over Northuinbria andMercia. And in 959, upon his brother Eadwigs death, he became king of
    • 60 WORDS AND MEANINGSWessex as well, ruling an England that extended from the Tyne south andwest to the Welsh mountains, roughly the England we know today. Here aretwo samples of OE literature with literal translations. The first excerpt is from The Venerable Bcdes story of Caedmon, acowherd at a Yorkshire monastery who in a dream was given the divine giftof creating religious songs. Below are the opening lines of that story. Thesecond is from the "Battle of Brimanburg," a poem included in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle from the year 937, It narrates a victory of the Anglo-Saxonsover the Scots and Danes. (The text has been normalized somewhat to makespelling more regular,) In ocosse abbudissan mynstre wis sum brooor syndrigiice mid In this abbesss monastery was a (certain) brother especially with godcundre gife gemsered ond geweorSad, lor pon be gewunade heavenly gift famed and blessed, for he accustomed (was) gerisenlice leoo wyrcan, pa $e torcfisestnisseond to arfsestnisse appropriate songs (to) make, which to piety and to virtue belumpen; swa Ssettc swa hwtet swa he of &odcgndum stafum }>urfa pertained; so that whatever) be of heavenly letters through boceras geleornodc, J?set he sfter medmiclum Гэке in scopgereorde scholars learned that he after moderate time in poets language mid ha msestan swelnisse ond inbryrdnisse ge&iengde, ond in with (he most sweetness and humility adorned, and in Hngliscgereordc wei gewoiht Гоф brohtc. Ond for his Icu^sotigum English-language well worked forth brought. And for his poemsongs monigra mtmna mod oft to worulde forhogdnisse ond to many (of) mens minds often to world contempt and to ge^eodnissc |>ffis heofonlican lifes onbsrnde wiron. association (of) the heavenly life inspired were.Her ^pelstan cyning, / eorla drihten Here, Athelstan king.earis lordheovna beahgifa, / and his broSor eac, warriors rlnggiver and his brother also,Eadmund «Seting, /ealdorlangnctir Edmund nobleman, Lifelong glorygeslogonffitsa^tce / sweorda ecgum won at battle (with) swords edgesyinbe Brunanburh; / bordwcall clufon, around Brunanburg; shieldwalldove,heowon hcaQolinde / hamora lafum, hewed warlinden (with) hammers leavingseaforan Eadweardes; / swa him sons Edwards; so (<o) him noble was geaeftele w s sTram cneomagtim. / pxt hiffitcampe oft from antes!ors that they at battle oftenwi6 lafira gehwone / lnnd cal&odon, against foes any land protectedriord and ha mas. / Hellene! crungon. treasure and home. Army died,Seotta kodc / and scipflotan, Seotfisb people and sailors,f«gc feoLIon; / feld dennode doomed fell; field streamedsecga swate, / *i]s]san sunne upp (with) warriors sweat since sun up
    • WORDS: NATIVE AND BORROWED 61on morgenlid. / rtiffire lungol, on morningtime, famous star,glad ofef grundas. / G odes catidel gli ded over groun ds, G odhs candle beorht, bright,eccs Drihtnes, / o3 sio stuck gestcafl etem&J Lord, until Ihe noble creationsah to setlc. / ржг Ijeg sccg monig sank to scat. There lay warrior manygarum Idijfruiidan, / guma NorSerna {by) sowars killed, men Northernersofcr scyId .scoten, / s w уIce Scyttisc eac оver shiei d shot, so Scot alsowerig wigesssd. weary (of) battle sa tco Here, King Allielstan, lord of earls, ring-giver of warriors, and also his brother, Edmund the nobleman, won lifelong glory in battle with their swords around Hiunanburg. The sons of Edward1 clove shicldwaHs, hewed linden-shields with the leavings of the hammer (swords). It was natural from their nohle ancestry that they in battle often pro led ed any land, treasure, and home against any foes. The army fell, Scottish people and sailors fell doomed. The iield streamed with the blood о Г warriors from the tiime tlie sun rose up in the morning, that famous star, the bright candle oi God, the Eternal Lord, glided over the land, until the noble creation set. There lay many a warrior, killed with spears, Norseman shot over their shields, Scots too, weary and sated with battle,PROBLEM 3.15: You have already seen two foreign influences on English,Latin and Celtic, Here are some Danish words that were borrowed intoEnglish. (Some of them have been subsequently lost.) (I) What kind ofcontact did the Danes and Anglo-Saxons have? Before A,D. 1000 barda (beaked ship), cnearr (small warship), 1ф (fleet), ha (oarlock), arrest (battle), ran (rapine), mctl (action at law), hold (freeholder), wapeniake (an administrative district), husting (assembij1)- AfterlOOO Nouns: band, booth, bull, dirt, down (feathers), egg, fellow, freckle, kneel, kid,fe£>link, reindeer, reef{of sail), scab, scales, scrap, sear, sister, skin, skirt, jfcy, snare, steak, swain, window; birch., boon, gait, gap, guess, loan, race, rift, score, skill, slaughter, stack, Shrift, tidings, trust, waul, gift. Verbs: call, crawl, die, get, give, lift, raise, rid, scare, take, cast, clip, crave, droop, fiii, gape, kindle, nag, scowl, snub, sprint, thrust. Adjectivesxflat, loose, low, odd, tight, weak, awkward, ill, meek, seemly, sly, rouen, tattered, muggy. Pronouns and iither words: they, their, ihetn, both, same, though, till, (2) In the Oxford Universal Dictionary, there are approximately 30 or so ds beginning with sk-lsc- of Danish origin still in our active vocabulary.in the English Dialect Dictionary, there are over a thousand simple words
    • 62 WORDS AND MEANINGSbeginning with sc-Ltk-. What do you conclude about the durability of borrow-ings in non-standard dialects? What dialect area wouid you guess they arefrom? 0) Is the part of speech significant in the borrowings listed above?Why?(] I) (4) Review Lhe borrowings from Latin and Celtic. What difference-is there in the tone of words like iiraop, scare, nag, muggy, and/recite on theone hand and, on the other, words in Problems 3.10 and 3. ] 2? When the Danes were Forcibly brought into a not very solidly united England, it did more than begin the political unification of the land. While surpassed by few in their military zeal, the Danes were equally skilled in commercial affairs and in boning their legal points to a fine edge in their Thing, or meeting of ciders. Earlier, in Anglo-Saxon England, a violation of the law was often followed by a blood-feud. The strong sense of Danish legality combined with the increasingly strong English local government made crime less a private question of one individual compensating the kin ofan injured party with a hnc eailcd werglid than something to be dealt withby those who spoke in the name of the local thegn, the king, and God. Real, immediate, practical political power, though, was still exercisedby the local thegn and priest. The thegn supplied land in return for hispeoples labor and its fruits, protected them, and dispensed justice. In thissystem lay the seeds which would grow into a social structure powerfulenough to shape the English social system for hundreds of years after theNorman invasion. The ploughman ploughed and the thegn governed andfought. And if this meant a more stable and productive society for everyone,it also rneaTit less freedom for Lhose who pushed their ploughs. Because the power of the throne was not yet strong enough to reachdown to the individual thegn and churl, it could not enforce a single standardof justice. Long after the putative unification of the kingdom, the Danelawcontinued to exercise a considerable degree of independence in its ownaffairs. As a consequence, England was still divided in spirit when new Danishraids broke out, particularly during the reign of Ethel red the Rede less{c. 968-1016), a rather incompetent ruler. Since the union beLween the peopleswas not an easy one, the Danes did little to resist the raids against Wesscx,an area outside their Danelaw. After Elbelreds death, Saxon and Danish England engaged in a briefcivil war before Cnute (c. 994-1035), a Dane, defeated Wessex in 1015. Heand Edmund Ironside (c, 980-101 d), Ethelreds son, briefly divided the islandbetween them, and when Edmund died in ]0!6, Cnute became the king of theentire kingdom. As it turned out, not only did Cnute rule wisely, but hisaccession to power opened southern England, particularly London, to Danishbusinessmen and traders, making London an even more powerful andcosmopolitan city than it already was. (223)PROBLEM 3.16: Words borrowed from the Danes do not begin to occur
    • WORDS: NATIVE AND IWIKKUWED 63 frequently in English texts until the Middle English period. What might be one explanation for this 7 The Rise of London Because London figures so centrally in the development of a standard English, we have to account for its unique position in English history.Although some sort of settlement undoubtedly existed on the Thames beforethe Romans arrived, it was during Roman times that London began to developinto the iirst city of the country. The spot on which London iits was the only-piece of hard ground on the northern side of the Thames that afforded a solidbridgehead for roads coming from the Kentish towns and a suitable landingplace for ships coming up from the English Channel. Because half the roadsbuilt also converged on London Bridge, London was long destined to be thefuture со m in ere i ill center of England, Under the Saxons of Mercia, London declined somewhat in prestige since commerce with the continent was not as great as during the Roman occupation or Kents ascendancy. But though of little relative importance, London maintained a measure of independence from both Mercia and Kent,and when Alfred settled with the Danes in 87S, he managed to excludeLondon from the Danelaw, [hereby preserving its Saxon character. Becauseit was the main entry to the heartland of England, he fortified it and encouragedits growth in order to defend it from the Danes, Then when Cnute assumedthe throne in 1016, Danish merchants became some of the leading tradesmenand citizens. Before the end of the eleventh century, London had become the mostimportant commercial city in England, populated by a variegated and sophisti-cated people, many from continental Europe. Always more powerful thanher official status would suggest, London finally regained the status it hadheld in Roman times. By 1066, her population stood at perhaps 14,000—several thousand more than the next largest city, Winchester, and perhaps6000 more than the estimated 8000 population of York. After the Norman Conquest in 1066, William the Conqueror wascrowned near London in Westminster. But when he built a residence, hemoved from inside the walls of the City closer to his new Cathedral atWestminster, two miles away. In this single action, he made the few milesencompassing Westminster and London the political, commercial, andcultural center of the land. At the same time, by living outside the walls ofLondon, he helped preserve its independent political, cultural, and economicspirit. Londons later political and cultural strength eventually resulted in itsdialect becoming the prestige dialect of the land. While Alfred and hisdescendants made tlieir court in the South, West Saxon was the dialect of
    • 64 WOKL1S AND MEAN1NUSEnglish in which the major literature and law was written. When the NormanConquest ended Wessexs ascendancy and reduced the flow of literaturewritten in English to a trickle, the only prestige dialect among the upper classwas Norman French. When English hegan to re-assert itself three centurieslater, it would be the dialect of London, of the East Midlands, that wouldeventually become the national standard. This raises a difficulty in studying the history of English because WestSaxon, the earlier prestige dialect, and Mercian, the OE dialect that wouldfather East Midland, were different in some important ways. When we studyOF., we study West Saxon, hecause that dialect was used in the great prepon-derance of OE texts. But standard MudE stems not, ultimately, from WestSaxon but from East Midland speech.