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Richard
Saturday, September 29th, 2007, 09:37 PM
Is there any movement to revive the Anglo-Saxon as a spoken language? While never likely to be adopted as a major language as the revived language Hebrew did, it would be great to speak. While there are Anglo-Saxon scholars that can read and write poetry, I have not heard of any groups that speak it conversationally, nor any serious movements to use it as a spoken language.

Charles
Saturday, October 27th, 2007, 12:39 PM
Greetings, Whilst I have not heard of any large 'revivalist' groups that speak or write anglo-saxon, I did come across Anglo-Saxon as a wikipedia language page which appears to have a small group of individuals who are interested in writing and speaking Anglo-Saxon.

http://ang.wikipedia.org

Angelcynn Beorn
Wednesday, November 14th, 2007, 10:01 PM
Just a note on this. I was recently looking through a local bookshop and found in the linguistic section a "teach yourself Old English" book with accompanying CD to learn pronunciation. This was along with all the other teach yourself titles on Swedish, German, Italian, etc. So obviously there must be some sort of revival in interests if even the major language book publishing companies are beginning to cash in.

:D

śĢeling
Sunday, November 25th, 2007, 11:34 PM
Teach Yourself Old English is a good guide. I have a translation of Beowulf in Modern and Old English, which is a fantastic way to learn. My Odinist group has three or four of us who are learning or wanting to learn.

William Barnes a Dorset poet in the late 19th century, I believe, started the Anglisc movement to replace French, Greek and Latin words with more Germanised words.

SwordOfTheVistula
Monday, November 26th, 2007, 06:00 AM
William Barnes a Dorset poet in the late 19th century, I believe, started the Anglisc movement to replace French, Greek and Latin words with more Germanised words.

That makes a lot more sense to me than trying to roll back the entire language several hundred years

śĢeling
Monday, November 26th, 2007, 10:49 AM
I think even the Anglisc movement is/was a bridge to far, languages change there isn't much that can be done about it.

Old English deserves at least the same recognition as Latin or Greek in English universities and maybe colleges. It is, after all, the roots of our own tongue and for English people or their colonial kin our link to our ancestors.

There should be greater recognition of the northern languages Old English, Old Norse.

Angelcynn Beorn
Wednesday, November 28th, 2007, 11:37 AM
Teach Yourself Old English is a good guide.

How does it compare to the other guides out there? I brought a copy of An invitation to Old English by Bruce Mitchell a while back and ended up forcing myself through reems and reems of grammatical terms and laws, and eventually just lost interest and never finished the book.

śĢeling
Wednesday, November 28th, 2007, 04:49 PM
Originally Posted by Angelcynn Beorn
How does it compare to the other guides out there? I brought a copy of An invitation to Old English by Bruce Mitchell a while back and ended up forcing myself through reems and reems of grammatical terms and laws, and eventually just lost interest and never finished the book.

I have Mitchell and Robinsons A Guide to Old English and that is very much grammar based as well. The thing is that you really donít need to know much about grammar when you start to learn a language, I would guess most people who speak their native language know little about its grammar. Later on itís worth learning but right at the beginning you really are put off by it all.

Teach Yourself Old English is pretty much set out like learning a modern language but it focuses on Old English documents and gets you to learn vocabulary and word order from that. Itís far easier to get into.

For me personally there is more point to learning Old English, I might use French or German once or twice in my life and lets face it an English speaker really doesnít have to bother learning a foreign language, at least a European one, to be understood there is always someone who speaks English, arrogant and lazy maybe but none the less fact for saying it. By contrast Old English is something I know I will use fairly frequently as I like to work with Anglo-Saxon documents and I prefer to read the actual language it was written because you do lose a lot via translation. Old Norse is the same especially if you want to read the Eddas in the original.

Oswiu
Wednesday, November 28th, 2007, 08:11 PM
I read an excellent book (in English) by a Russian author from Moscow State University - a certain Mrs. Rastorgueva (or Rastorguyeva perhaps?), which oddly enough explained it all better to me than any text used in our universities. I don't know if it's available abroad, though. Worth a look if you're interested and can get hold of a copy.

Angelcynn Beorn
Monday, December 3rd, 2007, 06:53 PM
I read an excellent book (in English) by a Russian author from Moscow State University - a certain Mrs. Rastorgueva (or Rastorguyeva perhaps?), which oddly enough explained it all better to me than any text used in our universities. I don't know if it's available abroad, though. Worth a look if you're interested and can get hold of a copy.

Is this what you're talking about?

http://www.refstar.ru/data/r/id.5227_1.html

Oswiu
Monday, December 3rd, 2007, 08:07 PM
Is this what you're talking about?
http://www.refstar.ru/data/r/id.5227_1.html
It's mentioned in the bibliography down at the bottom, but this text in particular is something else - similar style, though.

The one I have is:
Rastorgueva T.A. ĎA History of Englishí, Moscow, 1983, 347p.
Mine's a light paperback, nice and tattered and faded, in pink.

I've just done a little search on Yandex.ru, and Oh No! There's a fancy new modern edition! :eek:
http://im2-tub.yandex.net/i?id=7594685&tov=2
Poor young post Soviet Russian kids... Russia's just not Russia when it's not good old days style Russia! :puppyeyes

Soten
Monday, December 3rd, 2007, 08:19 PM
Does enough of the Anglo-Saxon language survive that we would be able to "revive" it? By this I mean could it be used as a conversational language and spoken language? Would I be able to describe in Anglo-Saxon all my experiences and the things I saw while out walking my dog just as easily as describing some ancient battle?


I'm sure more basic uses of the language survive but from my own experience I've only ever seen Beowulf-type sagas and so forth in Anglo-Saxon.

śĢeling
Monday, December 3rd, 2007, 09:56 PM
Originally Posted by Soten
Does enough of the Anglo-Saxon language survive that we would be able to "revive" it? By this I mean could it be used as a conversational language and spoken language? Would I be able to describe in Anglo-Saxon all my experiences and the things I saw while out walking my dog just as easily as describing some ancient battle?

I would say the answer to that is yes, Old English has the richest vernacular literature outside of the ancient Greek and Latin languages. I don't think it would be impossible to communicate using just Old English

Soten
Monday, December 3rd, 2007, 11:24 PM
I would say the answer to that is yes, Old English has the richest vernacular literature outside of the ancient Greek and Latin languages. I don't think it would be impossible to communicate using just Old English

Well, in that case sign me up! Haha, I've always wanted to learn anyway, especially after taking such an interest in Tolkien's work.

I should finish my German studies first though... Speaking of which, what language still in existence today would be most helpful to learn if you later wanted to learn Old English? German might be helpful in some ways but is Icelandic even more similar?

Angelcynn Beorn
Tuesday, December 4th, 2007, 11:06 AM
Well, in that case sign me up! Haha, I've always wanted to learn anyway, especially after taking such an interest in Tolkien's work.

I should finish my German studies first though... Speaking of which, what language still in existence today would be most helpful to learn if you later wanted to learn Old English? German might be helpful in some ways but is Icelandic even more similar?

At a guess - and i'm no language expert - i would say Frisian is probably your best bet. It's still considered the most closely related language to English today, and has escaped many of the Latinisms and French influences that have effected English.

sophia
Tuesday, December 4th, 2007, 11:52 AM
At a guess - and i'm no language expert - i would say Frisian is probably your best bet. It's still considered the most closely related language to English today, and has escaped many of the Latinisms and French influences that have effected English.

I am really tempted to learn one of the rarer Frisian dialects. I am just not sure how to go about it (except perhaps spending a year or two on the continent - or one of the islands).

Oswiu
Tuesday, December 4th, 2007, 08:47 PM
Speaking of which, what language still in existence today would be most helpful to learn if you later wanted to learn Old English?
THe hardest bit about Old English is the case system, and the various verb stems.
From this more morphological or structural point of view, I wouldn't actually recommend a modern Germanic language, strange and paradoxical as it may sound! All have experienced decay of endings. None retain a fully working case system.

Therefore, I'd recommend an Indo European language that hasn't been to Romanised, or picked up too many peculiar phonetic traits (Indian and Armenian out!). Obviously learning one dead language to help you learn another is not an option, so if you want a fairly conservative type of IE language, so that you can see how these structural peculiarities work in real life, I'd suggest spending some time in a Slavonic or Baltic country. The South Slavs have picked up some odd stuff in their wanderings, and Bulgarian is as decayed and shot to pieces morphologically as modern English is. The westernmost Slavonic languages are full of Germanisms, and have nasty consonants, Polish even having awful nasal vowels. Russian or Latvian or Lithuanian, then. Balts all understand Russian and speak English, mind... ;)

Angelcynn Beorn
Thursday, December 6th, 2007, 01:33 AM
THe hardest bit about Old English is the case system, and the various verb stems.
From this more morphological or structural point of view, I wouldn't actually recommend a modern Germanic language, strange and paradoxical as it may sound! All have experienced decay of endings. None retain a fully working case system.

Therefore, I'd recommend an Indo European language that hasn't been to Romanised, or picked up too many peculiar phonetic traits (Indian and Armenian out!). Obviously learning one dead language to help you learn another is not an option, so if you want a fairly conservative type of IE language, so that you can see how these structural peculiarities work in real life, I'd suggest spending some time in a Slavonic or Baltic country. The South Slavs have picked up some odd stuff in their wanderings, and Bulgarian is as decayed and shot to pieces morphologically as modern English is. The westernmost Slavonic languages are full of Germanisms, and have nasty consonants, Polish even having awful nasal vowels. Russian or Latvian or Lithuanian, then. Balts all understand Russian and speak English, mind... ;)
I was actually considering learning Russian for a while myself. But the thought of learning a completely new alphabet, and trying to get the 'flow' of the language right is actually quite daunting.

Whenever i listen to Russians speak i often get the impression of somebody playing a tape backwards for some reason. :p

Sigurd
Thursday, December 6th, 2007, 01:58 AM
Old English deserves at least the same recognition as Latin or Greek in English universities and maybe colleges.

Generally, indigenous and other (Celto-)Germanic culture needs more recognition in universities here in the UK. Surely it cannot be that there is a mere two universities who offer a course on Germanic studies, 3 who do any form of Scandinavian studies, 1 who does Scottish studies, 7 who do Celtic studies ... comparing to 16 who do Hispanic studies and 9 who teach Arabic language (not to forget the 8 [9 before Aberdeen dropped it] who do Gender Studies a.k.a. Academic Feminism)?!

Even Anthropology has been truncated to a mere ethnology course, including in fact any culture that is extra-NW-European. Even back home in Völkerkunde which would be the equivalent, you learn a great deal of indigenous culture alongside foreign culture.

It just shows you once more where this country is going, and what the "intellectual elite" is supposed to know about...

Talan
Thursday, December 6th, 2007, 02:41 AM
Generally, indigenous and other (Celto-)Germanic culture needs more recognition in universities here in the UK.

Very true. If I'm not mistaken, the Prussian dialect's resurgence had its roots in gaining such recognition.

Oswiu
Thursday, December 6th, 2007, 07:07 PM
Very true. If I'm not mistaken, the Prussian dialect's resurgence had its roots in gaining such recognition.
The Old Prussian language, as in the distant cousin of Lithuanian? Or the form(s) of Deutsch that were spoken from Stettin to Memel?
What kind of resurgence is this? Something like Cornish's popularity among those willing to revive this dead language as something of a hobby?

Talan
Thursday, December 6th, 2007, 07:41 PM
The Old Prussian language, as in the distant cousin of Lithuanian? Or the form(s) of Deutsch that were spoken from Stettin to Memel?
I assume the former, as I recall reading about the problems of transliteration in reconstructing the Prūsiskan (?) dialect.


What kind of resurgence is this? Something like Cornish's popularity among those willing to revive this dead language as something of a hobby?
The (academic) resurgence was an attempt to produce what is known as a Sprachlehre. Essentially it allows metalexicographers to arrange the evolution of indogermanische grammatical systems in the sense of some didactic progression. Important work, considering that the Teutonic tribes spoke a rigidly comparative language.

http://209.87.172.104/search?q=cache:yE8-ZNv63ugJ:www.uni-erfurt.de/sprachwissenschaft/personal/lehmann/CL_Publ/grammaticography.pdf+metalexicography+Pr ussian+%2Bpdf&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=5&client=opera (http://209.87.172.104/search?q=cache:yE8-ZNv63ugJ:www.uni-erfurt.de/sprachwissenschaft/personal/lehmann/CL_Publ/grammaticography.pdf+metalexicography+Pr ussian+%2Bpdf&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=5&client=opera)

I suppose this could be used to revive folk culture... the regional traditions are particularly strong in Prussia, right?

Oswiu
Thursday, December 6th, 2007, 08:11 PM
I assume the former, as I recall reading about the problems of transliteration in reconstructing the Prūsiskan (?) dialect.
If it's spelt that funny, then it's Old Prussian, and not Germanic at all!
What's the problem? A written form was in use before it became extinct. THere's quite a few religious texts around on the net if you look.

I suppose this could be used to revive folk culture... the regional traditions are particularly strong in Prussia, right?
Ummm.... Koenigsburg, the capital of Ostpreussen where Old Prussian was once spoken, many centuries ago, has been known as Kaliningrad for 60-odd years. Allenstein has been Olsztyn and Danzig Gdansk for that long too. Both were planted with nonGermans after the natives were killed or driven out. Not much call for learning Old Prussian there!

Reid
Thursday, December 6th, 2007, 09:15 PM
I have spent a little bit of time looking into it, but I haven't made an attempt to learn it yet. I fully intend to when my academic plate is a bit less full.

Two texts I was recommended for study and immersion were A Guide to Old English by by Bruce Mitchell and Fred C. Robinson (http://www.amazon.com/Guide-Old-English-Bruce-Mitchell/dp/1405146907/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1196975135&sr=8-2) (textbook-like, pure grammar, not so much for historical background) and Sweets Anglo-Saxon Reader (http://www.amazon.com/Sweets-Anglo-Saxon-Reader-Prose-Verse/dp/019811169X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1196975160&sr=1-1) (straight A-S texts w/ glossary).

Good luck to anyone who makes the effort.

I've always liked the idea of an A-S revival... if only for the reason that no one else would be able to understand it. It's a great burden, and a great loss of privacy for us as English-speakers, that our language is understood so widely among our neighbours (and our ethnic rivals). I don't necessarily mean this in a day-to-day sense, but more in an academic sense: it's impossible for us to have any advanced intellectual discourse that remains exclusively 'by us and for us', because anything objectively interesting is bound to be rapidly translated and diffused. Smaller nations with languages that still have more speakers within their borders than outside them don't have this problem; they still have the potential for an esoteric discourse that remains primarily consumed by their own people. A language like A-S would let us do that too.

Rodskarl Dubhgall
Monday, April 23rd, 2018, 04:32 AM
Tolkien seems to have stoked enough amateur fascination with Anglo-Saxon, probably in conjunction with Runic. What I would like to see, is Anglo-Saxon in Runic, rather than the Antiqua font that has dominated English forever. I want to have it burned in my brain when I think, when I see signs and look at walls of text in books. I'm guessing that had the English been converted with the Bible in Runic, then it would have remained, instead of been replaced with Antiqua. It seems that there was a compromise, because English monks wrote in Anglo-Saxon, using Antiqua, rather than Anglo-Saxon in Runic, or Latin in Antiqua. I don't care for this middle ground; it should be one or another. If Latin in Antiqua can be trusted properly expressing Christianity, then I wonder why not Anglo-Saxon in Runic. Neither are Greek, the original language of Christianity. Why are Mediterranean languages and scripts so much better?