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Oral and Literate Culture in England 1500–1700$
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Adam Fox

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780199251032

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199251032.001.0001

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Popular Speech

Popular Speech

(p.51) 1 Popular Speech
Oral and Literate Culture in England 1500–1700

Adam Fox

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on the patterns of popular speech in 16th- and 17th-century England. There were numerous varieties of English in use in early modern England. English was enormously enriched and expanded by the infusion of words and phrases from other languages, due to the influence of print culture and the cross fertilization in European intellectual life during the Renaissance. The perception of language saw a change to a more self-conscious identification of speech patterns with social status. New linguistic standards rendered alternative varieties of English objects of curiosity and academic interest. The interest in the dialect words of particular regions was a common feature of antiquarian scholarship during the 17th century.

Keywords:   popular speech, language perception, linguistic standards, speech patterns, dialect words, antiquarian scholarship, linguistic standards

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