AW: English is a Scandinavian language?

Johannes Reese johannesreese at GMX.DE
Fri Nov 30 10:45:59 UTC 2012

I think Icelandic is an important argument. Modern Norwegian is not a 
prototype for thé Scandinavian syntax, it is rather a stage of development 
most Scandinavian languages have reached now, a tendency of development 
common to Germanic languages as a whole. English has not adopted Scandinavian 
syntax, but has gone the path of a pan-Germanic language development. 
Perhaps the French influence on syntax is more decisive for English syntax 
specialties, take the V2 issue still not "overcome" in Scandinavia. 
Continental West Germanic dialects, s. e.g. Fering, has also not been taken 
into account. The syntactic development paths are the same on the continent 
like on the Isles and in Scandinavia. Other development paths, like in 
phonology, are special for West Germanic. They occur in English, and partly 
occured after ME, but are for the most absent in Scandinavia. I think that 
some reason most West Germanic language have preserved an older stage or 
elements of an older stage in their language development. But continental 
Germanic is also avancing in its development towards an English-like syntax, 
cf. the word order change in subordinate phrases e.g. 


*"English and Scandinavian can have a preposition at the end of the sentence.

This we have talked about.
Dette har vi snakka om."

Just like even in modern German, and very idiomatically in all of North Sea 

*"Dronninga av Englands hatt."

Low Saxon: De Käönigin van England är hout


Johannes Reese
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