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French vs. English

 

 

The French Legacy

 
 
  • In the early centuries the French borrowings were generally introduced by native-speakers of (Anglo-Norman) French
 
  • In the later, the borrowings were introduced almost entirely by speakers of (Parisian) French as a foreign language
 
  • The Parisian variety ultimately became the prestigious norm
 
  • Some words were borrowed twice once relatively early on from Anglo-Norman, and again some time later from Parisian French
 
  • Overall, the impact of French on Middle English was much greater than in the Old English period, both in quantity and stylistic range
 
  • The words were entering English through both the written and the spoken mediums, and at various stylistic levels within each medium
 
  • Many loans were general in character, but some were informal, and others were technical
 
  • Large numbers of terms related to restricted domains, such as horse-riding, law, religion, politics, society, and culture
 
 
  • In every domain, the new vernacular displays the influence of its linguistic predecessors
 
  • The Germanic element in the English vocabulary was put in the shade by a Romance lexical invasion of unprecedented proportions
 
  • By the end of the Middle English period around 30 percent of English vocabulary is French in origin
 

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FRENCH VS. ENGLISH

  Factors Favouring English

  Constraints on the Use of French

  The Situation of Triglossia

  The French Legacy

  Hybrid Anglo-French Forms

  French Loans in Chaucer

  The Impact of Latin

  Combined Impact of French and Latin

  Lexical Alternatives

MIDDLE ENGLISH

  Middle English Subperiods

  French vs. English

  Geoffrey Chaucer

  Emerging Standard

  More

 

 
 
 
 

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