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Re: Ander-Saxon and New Old English (was: RE: [CONLANG] Worldken bard Poul Anderson in deathstead (not a funny)

From:Sally Caves <scaves@...>
Date:Monday, August 6, 2001, 13:51
----- Original Message -----
From: And Rosta <a.rosta@...>
To: <CONLANG@...>
Sent: Friday, August 03, 2001 7:38 PM
Subject: Re: Ander-Saxon and New Old English (was: RE: [CONLANG] Worldken
bard Poul Anderson in deathstead (not a funny)

> Sally: > > Interesting surmise, And. > > > > This is a question I raise almost every time > > I teach Old English. What words would you > > bring back and what would they have evolved > > into? > > Next time you teach it, send me the answers to > your question.
okay, will do!
> > It would take a philologist to reconstruct > > an Alternate Modern English, but I think this > > has been attempted, hasn't it? At least in part? > > Point me to where I can find the attempts...
I don't know, And. I have a dim recollection of seeing references to a "purified English," more like Ander-Saxon. But what you are asking for is something considerably more complicated.
> > But not to the degree that you are suggesting? > > > > What about late Latin borrowings? Would they > > be expelled from the AME? Instead of > > "dormitory" we'd have "sleepstowe"? etc. > > What does German do?
Schlafsaal. Schlafstadt. "Sleep room." "Sleep place" Same thing.
> > "Gleed," ("coal") is one of my favorite recon- > > structions. Actually, I think it's used in Yorkshire, > > though, isn't it? Burning gleeds. > > _Glede_, it's normally spelt, I think. I thought it > meant 'a burning coal'.
I didn't know it was in currency. I brought it back the way I thought it would be spelled today. It could either be "glede" or "gleed." I was following the analogy with "seed," which you find in Middle English sometimes spelled "sede."
> > "Beership" for "party" is another one I'd bring back. > > "Dright" for "lord" or "master." > > "Seal" for "occasion"? "Songseal," > > "a time for singing"? > > "Overmood" for "arrogance"? > > "Gale" for "sing"? gale, gole, galen? > > "Thorf" for "need"? I thorf, he tharf, we thorf? > > I thorfed yesterday? Or: he tharfs? > > (would the preterite present verbs lose their > > distinctive third person singular present > > formation?) > > "Nay" for "suffice"? It nay? It nught? > > (pronounced "newt" /nut/) > > A very good start, this. > > > It could function as a modal, as do most of the > > other pret.pres. verbs: "It nay be said" (it > > suffices to be said, it's enough to say); "It nught > > be told," etc. > > Could you have "He nay go" -- 'it suffices that he > go'?
Why not?
> > And then, our lovely Class 4 verb niman, nam, > > namon, numen, which got replaced by Scandinavian > > "take": so "I nam his horse for he hath numen me > > wain." ("I took his horse because he's taken my > > wagon.") > > > > In a construction of an alternate modern English, > > though, we'd also have to decide if we're going to > > leave in other interventions, such as the assimilation > > of Scandinavian "th" in the pronouns and possessives: > > "they" instead of "hie," and so forth. What about the > > Scandinavian assumption of "-s" in the third person > > singular present indicative? Would it be "hath" or > > "has"? > > Were I doing the AME, I'd remove from history only the > Norman conquest.
Okay, that makes it considerably simpler.
> No modern dialects I'm acquainted with use 3sg -th or > a reflex of "hie", but 5 miles from my place of work > you can find people who quotidianly use _hoo_ /u:/ > instead of _she_. (Unfortunately I don't get to hear it, > because such speakers wouldn't speak such broad dialect > to me, though I do get the odd _thee_ and _thou_.)
Wow! Hoo! Don't they get it mixed up with "who"? Middle English variants: heo, scheo, scho, ho.
> > What other assimilations would we allow? What > > other changes or shortenings? What spellings? > > > > Are you aware of our under-visited ENGLISC > > listserv where some of us, in varying degrees of > > enthusiasm, attempt to compose or translate into > > Old English? At the moment, several members > > are writing a romance in Old English. We've translated > > the Gettysburg Address, the Four Questions of the > > Seder, and we attempted to translate some of Isidore's > > De Portentis, "On Monsters." > > > > > > I was aware of it, but lack the requisite knowledge and > competence to participate. Indeed, my anglophilia doesn't > stretch back beyond Early Modern English; that is, the > language that I love with all my soul was born around > five hundred years ago.
It's probably English in its finest hour, And. I regret the loss of that richness. Sally Caves