Old English was the tongue spoken in England from the mid-5th yearhundred to the year 1150 of the Runish Eld.
Beginning and growthEdit
Old English was born of the sundry Teutonish speechkinds brought over from northern Europe. Old English did not belive the same throughout the 700 or so years it was spoken (see timeline of the Anglo-Saxon incoming and takeover of Britain) from the Anglo-Saxon incomings that shope England in the 5th yearhundred to some time after the Norman infaring in 1066 RE, when the tongue underwent a great and startling overhaul. Throughout these early times it took some of its hue and makeup from other leids that it came upon, such as the Welsh tongues and the two Old Norse by-tongues, spoken by the Vikings who were coming into, taking over, and making themselves at home in wide stretches in northern and eastern England, which became known as Danelaw.
The thing bearing most weightily on the ongoing Old English overhaul was its Teutonish wordstock, word-string makeup and stavecraft which it shared with its speechkin on the europish mainland. Some of the tongue’s hallmarks were found only in West Teutonish kindred tongues to which Old English belongs, while some things were bequests from the Old-Teutonish tongue from which all Teutonish tongues are believed to have astreamed from.
Like other West Teutonish tongues at the time Old English was fully word-bending with five stavecraft endings, being in English : the Namendlic (nominative), Wrayendlic (accusative), Strainendlic (genitive), Forgivendlic (dative), and Atbraidendlic (instrumental), which had not only endings giving onefold and morefold in tell, but also an ending giving twifold in tell. Old English also gave kind to all namewords, such as those that show unbegasted (lifeless) things; as seo sunne (the Sun) was queanish, while se mona (The Moon) was carlish. (see nowaday German: die sonne vs der Mond)
Borrowings and loan words from Latin Edit
A great many from those who could read (mostly monks and churchmen) knew well, or at least knew some, Latin, the binding tongue of forflung, learned lede in Europe at that time. Sometimes one can give an about-time or even the year for a Latin word's incoming into Old English from the luide-shifts it had undergone. They were at least three timespans that Latin’s sway upon Old English outstands. The first happened when the Saxons were still in their homeland on the Europish mainland before they left to go to England. The second began when the Anglo-Saxons took up Christian belief and churchmen speaking Latin became rife throughout England. The third and, by far the greatest word borrowing staddled on Latin, happened after the Norman Infaring in 1066 AJ, when a great tell came into the tongue. Mostly “Oyl” words from mainstream Latin, although a weighty stock from Norse also came into the tongue, often hiding under a Norman hame. The Norman's coming marks the beginning of Old English's end and Middle English's birth.
The tongue was also otherwise ashapen by the withtrending from and forletting of the Runic starrof, or staffhoard (also known as the futhorc) and taking-on instead the Latin starrof, Old English words were spelt as they were stevened; bookstaves not stevened in today’s English, such as the “k” in “knight”, were stevened in Old English. Thus the outspeaking of the hard “c-” in cniht, the Old English word for knight. Another thing spelling words as they were stevened was to make the tongue's spelling fickle -- with a word's spelling often showing a lot about the writer's by-leid, its luide-set and luide-lore, and his shire. Often the spelling of a word would wend from writer to writer, and even from work to work by the same writer. Thus it could happen that the word “and” could be spelt either and or ond
Old English spelling therefore was thought to be more "bewildering" than modern English spelling, although it can at least be said that it put forth many its louds truly, while today's English spelling often cannot. Mostly today's those learning Old English begin by learning its set ways of spelling words and are only let go on to learn its spelling’s unset ways after they have mastered the tongue’s loud-lore.
Old Norse and Viking swayEdit
The twoth great loanword wellspring flowing into Old English was Scandinavish words brought in at the time the Viking were harrying the land and its dwellers in the ninth and tenth hundred years. Also, other than the great many steadnames, these words were the things used in every-day life, and words about the ways and sway of Danelaw (that is, the Viking folk strongholds, which took in wide and broad holdings all along England and Scotland's eeastern shoreline). The Vikings spoke Old Norse, a tongue kindred to Old English in that both sprung from the same forbearing old Teutonish tongue. It is often so, that the nearby dwelling of speakers of unsame by-leids, such as that which happens at times of mootish unrest, sees the birth of a knitted tongue, and one belief holds that this kind of leidish coming together of Old Norse and Old English helped the speeding-up of the falling off of stavecraft endings in Old English. Seemingly this belief stands firm, as the shedding of many of the tongues’ name and forname word endings happened firstly in the North, and then much later in the Southwest, the landship farthest away from Viking sway. Looking beyond the truth or otherwise of this belief, Old Norse's sway on the English tongue has been deep and ongoing: giving such everyday words as ''sky'', ''leg'' and the for-nameword ''they'', amongst hundreds more.
It has long been held that the Celtish tongue's sway on English has been small, setting out the small number loanwords celtish found in the tongue. And it is true that Celtish loanwords seem to number far less in number than those from either Latin or Old Norse.
Since the 1980s years, a growing number of writers, amongst them Hildegard Tristan, have strongly held the belief that the bearing that the Celtish tongue has had upon English has been underplayed. Latterly Celtic beginnings have been put forth for more and more English by-leid words. Tristan, Theo Venneman and others have put forth the belief that one can clearly see Celtish hallmarks in English wordsetting in the early times of Middle English.
To further inravel things, Old English had many by-s. The four main by-leidish Old English tongues were Mercish, Northumbrish (known togetherly as Anglish), Kentish and West Saxonish. Each of these by-leids was tied closely to a stand- alone kingdom on the iland. Of these, and all of Northumbria and most of Mercia were overrun by the Vikings throughout the C9th. The steads of Mercia and all of Kent not overrun by the Vikings became welded with Wessex.
After the welding of these unsame Anglo-Saxon kingdoms in 878AJ by Alfred the Great, there is a marked falling away of other by-leids, This is not to say that they stopped being spoken; they are being spoken even to this day, as witnessed by the being of middle English byleids; and the now [[English By-leids]] later on, and in that a folk do not readily turn to other speech ways and sounds when there is only a sudden shift of mootish might.
However, most deeds we have today from Anglo-Saxon times are written in the Wessex by-leid, Alfred’s kingdom. It seems likely that with the bringing together of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms into one, there was a need for the taking up of one tongue to lesser the awkwardness of having sway over folks living in the outlying steads of the kingdom. The outcome was that folk-steering deeds were written in the West Saxon by-leid. Not only this, but Alfred felt deeply about the bearing and spread of his mother tongue and brought many writers to his kingdom from Mercia so that much, that things not then yet put into writing, could be done so. Likewise this turned out well for the Church, moreso since Alfred took steps to overbring in English holy books and deeds. And so as to keep his backing and, for the widest spread of overbrought works, the monks and churchmen working for Alfred always followed the step of writing in his tongue. Alfred himself seems to have overbrought from Latin into English many Church works, one such being the well known work, “Care of Souls” written by the then Head of the Romish Church, Gregory, the First.
After the coming together of Anglish-Saxon might under Alfred’s leadership. along with the on-going threat of Viking inslaughts, there is little to show in writing of any further growth of by-leids other than the West Saxonish tongue.
Writings in Old English, though more in number than those in the tongues of the Europish mainland before AJ 1000 are nonetheless still very small. In his add-on writ to the 1935 after-death number of Bright’s Anglo-Saxon Reader, Dr James Hulbert writes:
"In such times a great number of the writings of the Anglo-Saxons were lost. Whatever they held, how weighty they were for gaining an understanding of the writings before the inslaught of the Normans, we have no way of knowing; the few deeds and lists found in minsters do not help us, and there is nothing shown even in other lasting writings...How wasted away is the body of our writings can be shown by the well known truth that, besides a few of somewhat little standing, all lasting Anglo-Saxon scopery is held in four handwritten works."Old English was one of the first home tongues to be written down. Some of the writings lasting from Old English times and still having great worth are Beowulf, a saga-like leeth; the Anglo-Saxon Tale, a writing down of early English yore, and Caedmon’s church-song. There are also a number of lasting writings, such as speeches by Churchmens, tales about the lives of Christendom’s holymen, overbringings from the Bible, and works by early Church Fathers overbrought from Latin, law deeds, such as wills and laws, and handy works on stavecraft, healcraft, and worldlore. Still scopery is thought to be the heart of Old English writings. Although nearly all Anglo-Saxon writers are nameless, foremostly among those named are Bede and Caedmon.
The last work to be written in the tongue was the English Yearbook. The tongue slowly became what is known as Middle English.