English and Celtic

JoatSimeon at aol.com JoatSimeon at aol.com
Sun Feb 7 18:47:52 UTC 1999

>iffr762 at utxvms.cc.utexas.edu

>Thus it is entirely conceivable that Britons could have an "accent" in (Old)
>English, and yet choose not to carry over any great number of British words,
>essentially because of the status differential.

-- illiterate peasants, in great numbers, managed to acquire all the Old
English vocabulary but didn't bring any loan-words across the language
boundary despite prolonged bilingualism?  Not even for everyday
rural/agricultural/household items?

This wasn't the way things happened anywhere else in the former territories of
the Roman Empire.

In any case, an _accent_ (which adult speakers of another language will find
it difficult to lose) doesn't affect the _grammar_ of a second language, just
the sounds.

(If it weren't for the chronology, I'd be very tempted to assume that Proto-
Germanic was IE spoken with an accent.)

If someone can acquire all the vocabulary, they can acquire the syntax.

Besides which, the grammar of Old English is quite conservatively West

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