- Slides: 28
ENGL 301 -131 Prepared by: Ms. Sahar Deknash
EARLY MODERN ENGLISH 1500 -1800 The Death of Chaucer at the close of the 15 th century marked the beginning of a new era in the English language history which is known as Early Modern English ( EMo. E).
EMo. E was mainly marked by: * A major change in the vowel system which is known as the GREAT VOWEL SHIFT. * The development of a single literary and administrative variety of the language that was later to be called STANDARD ENGLISH.
During this period, a great interest in learning arouse in England leading to the establishment of a group that is called the inkhorn people. It refers to a group of educated people who became more aware of the importance of language as they studied the writings of the Latin and Greek languages.
They called for the use of these two classic languages. Sir Thomas Elyot and Sir Thomas More represented this group.
What Aspects Differentiate ME from EMo. E? ME with its many variations and dialects was replaced by a new and more standardized language with a richer lexicon and an established and original literature.
The Word Stock of English expanded greatly for the following reasons: 1. To meet the need for words to describe the new inventions and discoveries. 2. The expansion and extension of English abroad and the contact with other languages.
The Word Stock of English expanded greatly for the following reasons: 3. The influence of the classical languages: Latin, Greek and French remained strong and they continued to be major sources of loanwords.
4. Spanish and Portuguese became new sources for English to borrow from. 5. Many other languages as: Scandinavian, Italian, German , Arabic and other Asian languages contributed to the word stock of English.
6. The British Colonization to America which started in the 15 th century. Native American languages began to influence and supply English with many words, too.
A standard language is the one that is widely spread over a large area, and respected by its people and recognized for its usefulness. English suffered once of inferiority from its speakers, but suddenly during the fifteenth century it gained a high status in the society and started developing as the only standard language that should be dealt with.
While Latin started to decline, English was studied, described, codified in order to be given its legal status. In order to gain standardization, English cared about two aspect: * Dictionaries * Grammar Books
Early Modern English Dictionaries: I. The first dictionary appeared in 1604 by Robert Cowdrey. The dictionary ( A table of Alphapeticall) contained 2500 rare and borrowed words.
II. John Bullokar’s Dictionary ( An English Expositor) appeared in 1616 for archaic words.
III. Henry Cockerman’s dictionary ( English Dictionarie ) appeared in 1623 for refined and vulgar words. IV. Thomas Blount’s dictionary ( Glossographia) appeared in 1656. It contained 11000 entries with the etymology of words. V. Edward Cocker’s dictionary ( English Dictionary) appeared in 1704.
VI. Nathan Bailey’s dictionary ( Universal Etymological English Dictionary) in 1721 contained 48000 entries of ordinary words with etymologies, cognate forms and stress placement.
The most important dictionary was Dr. Jonson’s Dictionary ( A Dictionary of the English Language), an impressive academic achievement in its own right, appeared in 1755. Dr. Johnson’s goal was not to “ reform but to register the language” It was significant for the following reasons: 1. It was the first English-English dictionary.
2. It contained 43. 000 words which helped to fix and stable the spelling of English. 3. It contained illustrative quotations from famous works of Shakespeare and Chaucer. 4. It was a model for OED which we use it today.
Early Modern English Literature It is called the Golden Age of English Literature due to the extensive number of poets, writers play writers, literary works produced and the number of words that were coined and added to English at that time. The bible translation from Latin into English continued.
The most important poets are: Edmund Spenser was born in East Smithfield, London around the year 1552. As a young boy, he was educated in London at the Merchant Taylors' School and Cambridge.
Sir Philip Sidney: was born in November 1554, In Kent. He was the eldest son of Sir Henry Sidney, Lord Deputy of Ireland. He studied at Shrewsbury School at the age of ten. He didn’t continue his education due to travelling all through the continent. Among the places he visited were Paris, Frankfurt, Venice, and Vienna.
Edmund Spencer’s famous works are Letter to Queen Elizabeth I A dialogue Between Two Shepherds Astrophel and Stella The Lady of May Certain Sonnets Arcadia
Christopher Marlow: He was a great Elizabethan playwright. He was born in Kent in February 1564. His family was rich, so he he was sent to the Kings School. His famous works are : * Tamburline the Great and * Dr. Faustus.
John Milton: A great English writer of the 17 th Century. He was also a great believer in liberty. He studied at St Paul's school. He Attended Cambridge University in 1625.
He wrote the famous religious epic called Paradise Lost. Milton acquired a considerable reputation in his lifetime that only grew after his death and he was considered the greatest of English poets in the Victorian era. His other famous works are: Sonnets Paradise Regained On Christian Doctrine
Ben Johnson: A contemporary poet and playwright of William Shakespeare and Marlowe. He Wrote satirical plays as The Alchemist. He wrote many lyric poetry.
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