Grammatical change- LC



Two- purpose of affixation: 

- Inflection Function: the way an affix shows a grammatical category such as a tense or pulral.      - Derivational Function: the way that an affic helps form a new word by attaching itself to a root. 


- indicate the grammatical form of a word. can chnage tense and plurality 

Old English was very reliant on them, but most old English inflctions disapeared during the middle ages. Early Modern English, some inflections were still in use that are not found today. 

Pronouns The pronounds 'thou', 'thee', and 'thine' were often used instead of the second person pronoun 'you'. 

Negative constructions: Multiple negatives are considered incorrect grammar. In the past they were acceptable and were used for emphasis. 

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Robert Lowth

1700s and 1800s:

1762 published, short introduction to Englsih Grammar, a prescriptivist approach to grammar which outline correct forms of the language.                                                                                  Believed that the language was in a state of decay and something drastic was needed to preserve its integrity. 

Lowths Rules: 

1. slipt indinitives ahould not be used e.g. to go boldly                                                                    2. 'Different' should be followed by 'from' rather than 'to' or 'than'                                                    3. A sentence should not end with a preposition. e.g. 'that was the man i gave the money to'        4. 'whom' should be used, not 'who' in an objects position.                                                            5. double negatives should be avoided e.g. 'the haven't done nothing'  

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Sentence Structure

- Sentence structure used to be more complex, containing more subordinate clauses within sentances.   

- Semi- colon less commonly utillied by people. DUe to an increase to simple sentences, where ideas are separated through full stops rather than semi-colons. 

- Sentences spanning four or more lines are rarely obsereved in litrature. 

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Comma Rules

1. commas are for items in a list 

2. commas before/ after conjunctions

3. commas after discourse markers 

4. commas to separate two clauses 

5. commas to separate additional information

- fifth comma rule being used less frequently in SE.                                                                           - Being replaced by parenthesis, with shortened versions of text appearing in brackets.                   - Use of brakcets deemed informal, did not appear in many published texts.                                  - Use of exlamation marks also increased. Links to social media, the way punctuation is used to portay emotion. (informal)              

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Milroy and Milroy 

Argued that 'language change is inevitable and should'nt be fought against' 

Argued against the high status of Standard English, as they claimed fears about falling standards meant peope were discriminated against. 


Argued that prescriptivism shows that people care about how langauge is used and that fear about language chage often symbolises fear about social problems. 

Declining standards in language mirror declining standards in behaviour and education. 

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