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Varieties of English in Writing. The Written Word as Linguistic Evidence.

Raymond Hickey

Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 378 pages.

The present volume has two major and related aims, one methodological and one documentary (1) Methodological aim: To discuss in the light of recent insights and methods in linguistics the problems and opportunities associated with documents of different varieties throughout the anglophone world when used as linguistic evidence. Such documents can be of a literary nature (as with dialect portrayal, for instance) or they can be non-fictional, for example with diaries, travelogues, official records, etc. (2) Documentary aim: To document the history of varieties in the anglophone world (both in the British Isles and overseas) and show how written documents have contributed to our picture of the emergernce of these varieties. The concern of the current volume is primarily with the assessing of written texts - both fictional and non-fictional - as linguistic evidence for earlier forms of varieties of English. The question of how genuine written representations are a central theme and the techniques and methodology which can be employed to determine this are discussed up front.


Linguistic evaluation of earlier texts
    Raymond Hickey

Non-standard language in earlier English
    Claudia Claridge and Merja Kytö

Assessing non-standard writing in lexicography
    Philip Durkin

Northern English in writing
    Katie Wales

Southern English in writing
    Gunnel Melchers

The distinctiveness of Scots: Perceptions and reality
    J. Derrick McClure

Irish English in early modern drama: The birth of a linguistic stereotype
    Raymond Hickey

Writing Ulster English
    Kevin McCafferty

Dialect literature and English in the USA
    Lisa Cohen Minnick

Written sources for Canadian English: Phonetic reconstruction and the low-back vowel merger
    Stefan Dollinger

Earlier Caribbean English and creole in writing
    Bettina Migge and Susanne Mühleisen

Earliest St Helenian English in writing
    Daniel Schreier and Laura Wright

'An abundant harvest to the philologer'? Jeremiah Goldswain, Thomas Shone and nineteenth-century South African English
    Lucia Siebers

'A peculiar language' Linguistic evidence for early Australian English
    Kate Burridge

Written evidence of early New Zealand English pronunciation
    Elizabeth Gordon

Name index

Feature index

Subject index