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Language and History in the Early Germanic World

Language and History in the Early Germanic World

$62.99 (P)

  • Date Published: August 2000
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521794237

$ 62.99 (P)

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About the Authors
  • This book offers a distinctive and accessible approach to the earliest encounters of the barbarian societies of Northern Europe with classical antiquity and with early Christianity. It brings together linguistic evidence from across Europe and dating from before Caesar to about 900 AD, to shed light on important aspects of Germanic culture. It shows how historical phonology and semantics, often avoided by nonspecialists, can provide important clues for historians and archaeologists of the period. Likewise, it demonstrates that philologists and linguists ignore historical evidence at their peril.

    • Linguistic evidence is used to illustrate the fusion of barbarian, classical, and Christian cultures in the rise of the early Middle Ages
    • The book provides a fascinating wider context for the study of Germanic historical linguistics
    • It argues that historians could benefit from linguistic insights, and that linguists should not neglect historical and archaeological evidence
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "...[its] appeal lies in the author's ability to provide a broad survey by way of linguistic evidence and historical findings." Choice

    "Green has assembled here virtually all of the evidence, and all of the interpretations of that evidence, regarding the advance of the Germanic peoples from prehistory into history, and presents it in an erudite and thoroughly engaging manner...[He] effectively demonstrates that the study of language is an indispensible prerequisite to the understanding of cultural institutions. Students and seasoned scholars alike will benefit enormously from a careful reading of this book." Michigan Germanic Studies

    "Fortunately, as far as this reviewer is concerned, most of the prerequisites necessary to enjoying this book fully were present, and I did enjoy it...readers without much knowledge of historical Germanic linguistics or of Latin will find this book interesting and satisfying, and they should emerge, as I did, with a much clearer understanding of the underpinnings of early medieval Europe." Journal of English and Germanic Philolgy

    "It almost goes without saying that this book is a major contribution to the fields that its title encompasses, representing decades of work by one of the world's foremost scholars of medieval literature and philology...To readers unfamiliar with the history of the Germanic populations of Europe, the period Green covers is one of the most interesting and surprising...Language and History in the Early Germanic World represents an extremely important contribution, one that anyone interested in the period or the peoples it addresses will most certainly consult. Its detail and exhaustive scope will leave readers with the taste of the best that rigorous philological investigation has to offer." Anthropological Linguistics

    "This well-written and highly readable volume belongs in the library of any medievalist interested in the early Germanic peoples." --Speculum, A Journal of Medieval Studies

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    Product details

    • Date Published: August 2000
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521794237
    • length: 464 pages
    • dimensions: 231 x 152 x 29 mm
    • weight: 0.69kg
    • contains: 1 b/w illus. 1 map
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. The Germanic World:
    1. Religion
    2. Law
    3. Kinship
    4. Warfare
    5. People and army
    6. Lordship
    7. Kingship
    Part II. Contact with the Non-Germanic World:
    8. Contact with the Celts
    9. The migration of the Goths
    10. Germanic loanwords in Latin
    11. Latin loanwords in Germanic
    12. Trade and warfare with the Romans
    13. Names of the days of the week
    14. The vocabulary of writing
    Part III. Contact with Christianity:
    15. Problems of Christianisation
    16. The influence of provincial Roman Christianity
    17. The influence of Gothic
    18. The influence of the Merovingian Franks
    19. The influence of the Anglo-Saxons
    20. Contrasts in Christian vocabulary
    21. The vocabulary of ethics and fate
    Index of words.

  • Author

    D. H. Green, University of Cambridge

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