- Created by: lwilson23
- Created on: 06-12-18 10:09
Early Modern English (1500-1700)
- Invention of Caxton's printing press (1476) important for standardisation
- References to health, disease, religion and royalty
- King James Bible (1611) important for standardisation
- In 1500, 1% of women were literate and around 10% of men, writing was only for the educated elite
-By 1700 male literacy had risen to 40% whereas females remained lower at 25%, readership was becoming larger
-This is of course indicative of the deep gender divide present in society at this time, a period of patriarchy
-Devotional (religious) texts were also extremely common due to the massively religious views at this time
-Strict social structure favoured the higher classes (e.g. nobles and gentry) to the lower (peasants)
Modern English (1700-1900)
- Johnson's dictionary in 1755 an important step in the standardisation process
- The industrial revolution that occured between 1760-1840 brought with it many neologisms (machinery etc.)
-The 'age of enlightenment' (18th century) favoured science over religion, causing the prevalence of religious views to decrease
-A great amount of importance was placed on the monarchy in this period
-The Great British Empire was expanding, new terrority and business ventures were being explored and topics of texts in this period may reflect this or be overly patriotic
-Expansion allowed English to establish itself as a dominant language used worldwide
Late Modern/Present Day English (1900-2000)
- the rise of other varieties of English (American English etc.) leads to variation in accents and dialect.
- increased media influence on language use.
- new technologies influence language use - internet, social media, mobile phones for example.
- the rise of secularism (non-religion) in society - in Europe and Britain especially.