Middle English

EnglishMiddleMElate Middle EnglishMedieval EnglishEnglish languageEarly Middle EnglishChanceryEnglish, Middle[16
Middle English (ME) is a period when the English language, spoken after the Norman Conquest (1066) until the late 15th century, underwent distinct variations and developments following the Old English period.wikipedia
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English language

EnglishEnglish-languageen
Middle English (ME) is a period when the English language, spoken after the Norman Conquest (1066) until the late 15th century, underwent distinct variations and developments following the Old English period.
Middle English began in the late 11th century with the Norman conquest of England and was a period in which the language was influenced by French.

Early Modern English

EnglishEarly ModernElizabethan English
Middle English was succeeded in England by the era of Early Modern English, which lasted until about 1650. The irregularity of present-day English orthography is largely due to pronunciation changes that have taken place over the Early Modern English and Modern English eras.
Early Modern English, Early New English (sometimes abbreviated to EModE, EMnE or EME) is the stage of the English language from the beginning of the Tudor period to the English Interregnum and Restoration, or from the transition from Middle English, in the late 15th century, to the transition to Modern English, in the mid-to-late 17th century.

Middle English literature

medieval English literatureMiddle EnglishMiddle
Little survives of early Middle English literature, due in part to Norman domination and the prestige that came with writing in French rather than English.
The term Middle English literature refers to the literature written in the form of the English language known as Middle English, from the 12th century until the 1470s.

John Wycliffe

WycliffeWycliffiteJohn Wyclif
During the 14th century, a new style of literature emerged with the works of writers including John Wycliffe and Geoffrey Chaucer, whose Canterbury Tales remains the one of most studied and read works of the period.
In 1382 he completed a translation directly from the Vulgate into Middle English - a version now known as Wycliffe's Bible.

Vikings

VikingNorseDanes
The eagerness of Vikings in the Danelaw to communicate with their southern Anglo-Saxon neighbors resulted in the erosion of inflection in both languages.
The word does not occur in any preserved Middle English texts.

Sheep

ramlambdomestic sheep
A significant number of words of French origin began to appear in the English language alongside native English words of similar meaning, giving rise to such Modern English synonyms as pig/pork, chicken/poultry, calf/veal, cow/beef, sheep/mutton, wood/forest, house/mansion, worthy/valuable, bold/courageous, freedom/liberty, sight/vision, eat/dine.
Use of the word sheep began in Middle English as a derivation of the Old English word scēap; it is both the singular and plural name for the animal.

History of English

standardization of English spellinghistory of the English languageEnglish
Early Middle English (1150–1300) has a largely Anglo-Saxon vocabulary (with many Norse borrowings in the northern parts of the country), but a greatly simplified inflectional system.
The Old English of the Anglo-Saxon era developed into Middle English, which was spoken from the Norman Conquest era to the late 15th century.

Ormulum

OrmOrm/Orrmin
Important texts for the reconstruction of the evolution of Middle English out of Old English are the Peterborough Chronicle, which continued to be compiled up to 1154; the Ormulum, a biblical commentary probably composed in Lincolnshire in the second half of the 12th century, incorporating a unique phonetic spelling system; and the Ancrene Wisse and the Katherine Group, religious texts written for anchoresses, apparently in the West Midlands in the early 13th century.
The Ormulum or Orrmulum is a twelfth-century work of biblical exegesis, written by a monk named Orm (or Ormin) and consisting of just under 19,000 lines of early Middle English verse.

Forest

forestsforestedwoods
A significant number of words of French origin began to appear in the English language alongside native English words of similar meaning, giving rise to such Modern English synonyms as pig/pork, chicken/poultry, calf/veal, cow/beef, sheep/mutton, wood/forest, house/mansion, worthy/valuable, bold/courageous, freedom/liberty, sight/vision, eat/dine.
The word forest comes from Middle English, from Old French forest (also forès) "forest, vast expanse covered by trees"; first introduced in English as the word for wild land set aside for hunting without the necessity in definition for the existence of trees.

Great Vowel Shift

a change in vowel pronunciationspoken English changed rapidlyby 1600
Significant changes in pronunciation took place, particularly involving long vowels and diphthongs which in the later Middle English period, began to undergo the Great Vowel Shift.
The main difference between the pronunciation of Middle English in the year 1400 and Modern English (Received Pronunciation) is in the value of the long vowels.

Layamon's Brut

BrutLayamon's ''BrutThe Chronicle of Britain
More literary sources of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries include Lawman's Brut and The Owl and the Nightingale.
1190 - 1215), also known as The Chronicle of Britain, is a Middle English poem compiled and recast by the English priest Layamon.

Katherine Group

Important texts for the reconstruction of the evolution of Middle English out of Old English are the Peterborough Chronicle, which continued to be compiled up to 1154; the Ormulum, a biblical commentary probably composed in Lincolnshire in the second half of the 12th century, incorporating a unique phonetic spelling system; and the Ancrene Wisse and the Katherine Group, religious texts written for anchoresses, apparently in the West Midlands in the early 13th century.
The so-called Katherine Group is a group of five 13th century Middle English texts composed by an anonymous author of the English West Midlands, in a variety of Middle English known as AB language.

Ayenbite of Inwyt

agenbite of inwit
The Ayenbite of Inwyt, a translation of a French confessional prose work, completed in 1340, is written in a Kentish dialect.
The Ayenbite of Inwyt —also Aȝenbite (Agenbite) of Inwit; literally, the "again-biting of inner wit,” or the Remorse (Prick) of Conscience is the title of a confessional prose work written in a Kentish dialect of Middle English.

Scots language

ScotsLowland ScotsScottish
This would develop into what came to be known as the Scots language.
The Scots language developed during the Middle English period as a distinct entity.

Bible translations into English

English translationstranslationsEnglish translation
[18] Early Modern English officially began in the 1540s after the printing and wide distribution of the English Bible and Prayer Book, which made the new standard of English publicly recognizable, and lasted until about 1650.
Partial Bible translations into languages of the English people can be traced back to the late 7th century, including translations into Old and Middle English.

Richard Pynson

[15
The press stabilized English through a push towards standardization, led by Chancery Standard enthusiast and writer Richard Pynson.
The 500 books he printed were influential in the standardisation of the English language.

Silent e

magic esilent silent
The combination of the last three processes listed above led to the spelling conventions associated with silent and doubled consonants (see under Orthography, below).
Typically it represents a vowel sound that was formerly pronounced, but became silent in late Middle English or Early Modern English.

Anglo-Norman language

Anglo-NormanAnglo-FrenchNorman French
Middle English also saw considerable adoption of Norman French vocabulary, especially in the areas of politics, law, the arts and religion.
Latin also remained in use in medieval England by the Church, the royal government and much local administration, as it had been before 1066, in parallel with Middle English.

Geoffrey Chaucer

ChaucerChaucer’sChaucer, Geoffrey
During the 14th century, a new style of literature emerged with the works of writers including John Wycliffe and Geoffrey Chaucer, whose Canterbury Tales remains the one of most studied and read works of the period.
Chaucer's work was crucial in legitimising the literary use of the Middle English vernacular at a time when the dominant literary languages in England were French and Latin.

Middle English phonology

Middle Englishthat of Middle Englishhomorganic lengthening
The main changes between the Old English sound system and that of Middle English include:
This variable outcome, along with other variable changes and the ambiguity of the Middle English spelling (either or in Early Middle English) accounts for the numerous pronunciations of Modern English words in -ough- (e.g. though, through, bough, rough, trough, thought, with -ough- pronounced respectively).

AB language

North Midlands Middle EnglishAB literary dialect
The language found in the last two works is sometimes called the AB language.
In English philology, AB language is a variety of Middle English found in the Corpus manuscript, containing Ancrene Wisse (whence 'A'), and in MS Bodley 34 in Bodleian Library, Oxford (whence 'B').

Modern English

EnglishModernmodern spoken English
The irregularity of present-day English orthography is largely due to pronunciation changes that have taken place over the Early Modern English and Modern English eras.
Modern English (sometimes New English or NE as opposed to Middle English and Old English) is the form of the English language spoken since the Great Vowel Shift in England, which began in the late 14th century and was completed in roughly 1550.

Old English

Anglo-SaxonSaxonAnglo Saxon
Middle English (ME) is a period when the English language, spoken after the Norman Conquest (1066) until the late 15th century, underwent distinct variations and developments following the Old English period.
This is regarded as marking the end of the Old English era, as during this period the English language was heavily influenced by Anglo-Norman, developing into a phase known now as Middle English.

English orthography

spellingEnglish spellingEnglish
The irregularity of present-day English orthography is largely due to pronunciation changes that have taken place over the Early Modern English and Modern English eras.
Most of the spelling conventions in Modern English were derived from the phonetic spelling of a variety of Middle English, and generally do not reflect the sound changes that have occurred since the late 15th century (such as the Great Vowel Shift).

Peterborough Chronicle

EE" versionPeterborough Manuscript (Version E)
Important texts for the reconstruction of the evolution of Middle English out of Old English are the Peterborough Chronicle, which continued to be compiled up to 1154; the Ormulum, a biblical commentary probably composed in Lincolnshire in the second half of the 12th century, incorporating a unique phonetic spelling system; and the Ancrene Wisse and the Katherine Group, religious texts written for anchoresses, apparently in the West Midlands in the early 13th century.
It is also a valuable source of information about the early Middle English language itself.