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A History of German

What the Past Reveals about Today's Language

Second Edition

Joseph Salmons

August 2018

ISBN: 9780198723028

480 pages
Paperback
246x171mm

In Stock

Price: £23.49

This textbook provides a detailed introduction to the development of the German language from prehistory to the present. This second edition has been extensively revised to include coverage of syntactic change, sociolinguistics, language variation, and language contact, as well as more detailed definitions and background information for beginners.

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Description

This textbook provides a detailed introduction to the development of the German language from prehistory to the present. This second edition has been extensively revised to include coverage of syntactic change, sociolinguistics, language variation, and language contact, as well as more detailed definitions and background information for beginners.

  • Fully revised and updated second edition
  • Assumes no background in linguistics
  • Covers both structural changes and social influences
  • Comprehensive coverage from prehistory to the present
  • Supported by a companion website

New to this edition

  • Extended discussion of syntactic and pragmatic change
  • More detailed background information for beginners
  • Further coverage of sociolinguistics, language variation, and language contact
  • More on the position of German in the Germanic language family

About the Author(s)

Joseph Salmons, Lester W. J. 'Smoky' Seifert Professor of Linguistics, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Joseph Salmons is the Lester W. J. "Smoky" Seifert Professor of Linguistics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison., where he is also co-founder and Director of the Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures. His work focuses on language change in the context of linguistic theory, especially speech sounds. He serves as editor of Diachronica: International Journal for Historical Linguistics and his main publications include The Oxford Handbook of Historical Phonology (co-edited with Patrick Honeybone; OUP, 2015) and Germanic Heritage Languages in North America: Acquisition, Attrition, and Change (co-edited with Janne Bondi Johannessen; Benjamins, 2015).

Table of Contents

    1:Introduction: aims and scope
    2:The depths of prehistory: up to Indo-European
    3:The dawn of history: Germanic up to the earliest direct attestation
    4:From Germanic to Old High German: early textual evidence
    5:Middle High German: the High Middle Ages
    6:Early New High German: richer structural evidence and socio-historical context
    7:New High German: recent and ongoing change
    8:Conclusion: interpreting the significance of the past for us
    References

Reviews

"Review from previous edition Joseph Salmons has produced a brilliant and challenging book that is already spurring fruitful discussion and collaboration. This project will give students a real sense of our dynamic field, with its lively debates and intriguing open questions. For many students, Salmonss book and website will be their first taste of Germanic historical linguistics and perhaps their first exposure to linguistics of any kind. It will not be long before many young colleagues start telling us that what first turned them on to the serious study of language was A History of German." - David Fertig. Language, 07/07/14

"an insightful, informative, and inspiring work of scholarship ... A History of German is a major contribution to the fields of historical Germanic linguistics and historical linguistics in general, and it will certainly be useful to readers for many years to come." - John D. Sundquist, Journal of Germanic Linguistics 05/06/15

"The book had its origin in material prepared for university courses, and the authors enthusiasm for the subject, his estimable command of current research, and his desire to communicate it to students are evident throughout." - Martin Durrell, The Modern Language Review 16/04/2014

"I strongly recommend this book to everybody interested in learning and/or teaching the history of German." - Barbara Schlücker, Morphology 18/09/13

"a most welcome addition to the existing literature on the history of the German language ... a joy to read ... an excellent volume." - Tonya Kim Dewey, Beitraege zur Geschichte der deutschen Sprache und Literatur 12/06/15