Introduction to the history of English: Focus on Middle English



Zeit/Ort n.V.:

  • Einzeltermin am 11.05.2019 11:00-19:00, Raum C 601
  • Einzeltermin am 25.05.2019 11:00-19:00, Raum C 601
  • Einzeltermin am 08.06.2019 11:00-19:00, Raum C 601

Voraussetzungen / Organisatorisches

- Lehramt Englisch an Gymnasien: Zwischenmodul Linguistics. (Zulassungsvoraussetzung: abgelegtes Basismodul |Linguistics|)

Scheinerwerb: Klausur

This course will be held in 3 one-day blocks on 3 Saturdays in the first half of the semester. The precise dates will be given here by mid-February.
The course ends with an exam on a fourth, separate date.


This course provides an introduction to the history of English with a focus on Middle English, which was spoken and written in England between ca. 1150 and 1500. We will take a closer look at different aspects of this historical variety of English including spelling and pronunciation, morphology, syntax, lexicon and dialects. We will also take the origin and further development of the linguistic features into consideration so that students will be able to better understand and explain (ir)regular characteristics of Present-day English. For example: the discrepancy between spelling and writing (e.g. for /i:/ as in |see| /si:/), irregular forms such as the plural form |mice| (instead of **|mouses|) or the irregular verb forms |ride-rode-ridden|, the fixed word order SVO or the origin of the wealth of synonyms in English (e.g. |kingly, royal, regal|).

We will read, translate and analyse selected Middle English texts during the seminar.