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Lexical and semantic change.
Semantic:
Amelioration: Changing the words definition from negative to
positive
Lexical:
Borrowing/loan words The introduction of a word Pejoration: Changing the words meaning from positive to
negative
from one language to another, these can be anglicised or
remain similar to the original in spelling and pronunciation. Weakening: When words lose some of their original force or
Suffixes: The addition of bound morphemes to the end of strength e.g. 'Soon' now means in the near future, but used to
the root word mean immediately
Prefixes: The addition of a bound morpheme to the Narrowing: The word becomes more specific in its meaning e.
beginning of a root word g.
Affixation: The addition of bound morphemes to an 'Meat' originally meant food in general, but now only applies to
existing word animal flesh
Clipping: A new word made by shortening an existing one Broadening: When the meaning of a word broadens, so that it
Initialism: A word made from initial letters each being retains its old meaning, but takes on
pronounced an added meaning as well i.e. 'Holiday' meant 'Holy Day' - a day
Acronym: A lexicalised word made up from the initial of religious importance, now it means a day where one does not
letters of a phrase sounded as a word have to go to work
Proprietary names: The name given to a product by Metaphor: Words often acquire new meanings because they
one organisation becomes the name commonly used for begin to be used metaphorically e.g. 'Onion Bag' refers to the net
the same product e.g. hoover of a goal in football as well as a bag containing onions.
Eponym: The name of a person after whom something is Euphemism: A mild or inoffensive way of describing something
named.
distasteful or unpleasant e.g. civilian casualties are 'collateral
damage
Idiom: Sayings that don't make sense if you literally interpret
them e.g. its raining cats and dogs…read more

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Standardisation
Convergence:
· Centres on pragmatics and how people
adjust their speech behaviour to
Caxton's Printing press (15th Century)
Rules needed to enable clear communication. accommodate others showing their need
Irregularities in spelling e.g. homophones. for approval
Spelling reflects old pronunciation Divergence:
technology has resulted in spelling changes
· Adopts exaggerated speech behaviour in
Punctuation: order to distance themselves from other
· Caxton used the full stop, colon and speakers or to reinforce their different
virgule (slash) identity
· Virgule was replaced by a comma with
technological advances
· Used differently in texting (emoticons :)
· Commas link long clauses, Semi colons
often also used
· Speech marks used
· Contractions occur in various ways.…read more

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Grammar.
18th century grammar: 17th/18th century grammar:
· Formal style used · Negation ­ constructing a negative using a different
· Complex sentences syntax e.g. I know not
· Embedded clauses · Syntax ­ the complement comes before the min
· Multiple subordination subject and verb. The adverb comes after the verb
· Prepositions ­ choices seem odd
Influences: · Contractions ­ lack of contraction in a text shows
formality and intelligence.
· Standardisation
· Punctuation ­ enhances the complexity by using multi-
· Formal and hierarchical society clause sentences also shows intelligence
· Writing valued as separate from
speech…read more

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Grammar
19th Century Grammar: 20th Century Grammar:
· Grammatical formality still · Simpler syntax
evident · Minor and simple sentences
· Sentences are less complex · Popular in media and advertising
· Non standard spelling and punctuation
Influences:
· Continuing standardisation Influences:
· Changes in class attitudes · American English
· Universal education · Technology
· Social levelling and equality
· Oral language forms
· Growing informality
· Entertainment and leisure industries…read more

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Theorists.
Dennis Freeborn: Jean Aitcheson:
· The incorrectness view ­ All · Crumbling castle view ­ the language
accents are incorrect compared to was perfect at one point in time but now is
standard English, and to the accent of crumbling and needs to be preserved.
received pronunciation · Damp spoon theory ­ the language is
· The ugliness view ­ Some accents changing due to increasing laziness
don't sound nice. Linked to stereotypes · The infectious disease theory - we catch
and negative social connotations
changes from those around us, People pick
· The impreciseness view ­ Some up changes because they want to fit in with
accents are described as `lazy' such as social groups.
Estuary English, where sounds are
· Ease of articulation
omitted or changed
· Social prestige and changes in society
· The in formalisation of mass communication,
radio and TV
· The assertion of cultural identity moves
against `correct' speech.…read more

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