History of english language

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e word, 4. Phonetic changes in the final syllables. In the first place, the morphological classification of OE nouns rested upon the most ancient grouping of nouns according to the stem-suffixes. Stem-suffixes could consist of vowels vocalic stems, e.g. a-stems, i-stems, of consonants (n-stems), of sound sequences (-ja-stems, nd-stems). Some groups of nouns had no stem-forming suffix or had zero-suffix; they are usually tered root-stems and grouped together with consonantal stems, as their roots ended in consonants. A-stems included MASC. and NEUt. Nouns. The forms in the a-stem declension were distinguished through grammatical endings (including zero ending). In some words inflections were accompanied by sound interchanges: nouns with the vowel [ж] in the root had interchanged [a],

 

18. Preterite-present verbs in OE and their further development

 

In OE there were twelve preterite-present verbs (the had indicative, subjunctive moods; sin, pl, 3 persons, present and past tense). Six of them have survived in Mod. E owe, ought, can, dare, shal, may, must. Most of the preterite-presentsdid not indicate actions, but expressed a kind of attitude to an action denoted by another verb, an Infinitive which followed the preterite-present. In other words, they were used like modal verbs, and eventually developed into modern modal verbs. In ME and early NE several preterite-present verbs died out. The surviving verbs lost some of their old forms and grammatical distinctions but retained many specific peculiarities. They lost the forms of the verbals which had sprung up in OE and thedistinctions between the forms of number and mood in the Present tense. In NE their paradigms have been reduced to two forms or even to one. Now dare has s ending in the 3rd person and Past form dared.

 

19. The anomalous verbs in OE and their further development

 

Among the verbs of the minor groups there were several anomalous verbs with irregular forms. OE willan (past wolde) was an irregular verb with the meaning of volition and desire; it resembled the preterite-presennts in meaning and function, as it indicated an attitude to an action and was often followed by an Infinitive. Eventually willan became a modal verb, like the surviving preterito-presents, and, together with sculan developed into an auxiliary. Some verbs combined the features of weak and strong verbs. OE dLn formed a weak Past tense with a vowel interchange: and a Participle in n: don-dyde-Zedon. Two OE verbs were suppletive. OE ZAn, whose Past tense was built from a different root: ZAn-eLde Ze-Zan. BeLn. In ME verb willan was used as a modal verb expressing volition. In course of time it formed a system with shall, as both verbs, shall and will began to weaken their lexical meanings and change into auxiliaries. ZAn in ME it acquired a new Past tense wente, which came from an entirely different verb, OE wendan

 

20. The sources of Modern English verb groups

 

The proportion of strong and weak verbs in the language has considerably altered in the course of history. The OE strong verbs reduced by over two thirds, constitute a small group of verbs in present day English: they belong to non-standard verbs, which include nowadays many more verbs coming from various sources. Several groups of modern non-standard verbs have developed from the weak verbs class 1. Nowadays they employ various form-building devices: the dental suffix, vowel and consonant interchanges. These are verbs like sellan salde/ sellen-solde. Another group of weak verbs became irregular in Early ME as a result of quantitative vowel changes. In verbs like OE cepan, the long vowel in the root was shortened before two consonants in the Past and Participle 2. The long vowel in the Present tense stem was preserved and was altered during the GVS, keep-kept. 3 Verbs like OE settan, with the root ending in a dental consonant, added the dental suffix without the intervening vowel [e] OE sette. When the inflections were reduced and dropped, the three stems of the verbs Present, Past and Part. 2 fell together set-set-set; put-put-put, cast-cast, cast. The final t of the root had absorbed the dental suffix.

 

21. Changes in the verb conjugation in ME and NE

 

Many markers of the grammatical forms of the verb were reduced, leveled and lost in ME and Early NE: the reduction, leveling and loss of endings resulted in the increased neutralization of formal oppositions and the growth of homonymy. Infinitive OE-findan ME finden early NE find; Present tense ind. M. s. 1st finde finde find, 2nd fintst-findest-findest, 3rd fint findeth-findest; plural findaD finden-find; Subjunctive sin finde-finde-find; pl. finden-finden-find; imperative OE-sg find, pl findaD; ME finde early NE find; Participle 1 findende finding finding, Past tense ind, sin 1st fond fand, found, 2nd funde-founde-found, 3rd fond fand found, pl fundon founden found|| subj OE s, pl funde\funden ME founde early NE found|| Participle 2 (Ze) fundon founden found. ME forms of the verb are represented by numerous variants, which reflect dialectal differences and tendencies of potential changes. The intermixture of dialectal features in the speech of London and in the literary language of the Renaissance played an important role in the formation of the verb paradigm.

 

22. The history of the verbal grammatical categories in English

 

In OE there were two non-finite forms of the verb: the Infinitive and the Participle. In many respects they were closer to the nouns and adjectives than to the finite verb: their nominal features were far more obvious than their verbal features, especially at the morphological level. Like finite forms they could take direct objects and be modified by adverbs. Infinitive had no verbal grammatical categories. Being a verbal noun by origin, it had a sort of reduced case-system: two forms which roughly corresponded to the Nom. And the Dat. Cases of nouns. Like the Dat. Case of nouns the inflected Infinitive with the preposition to could be used to indicate the direction or purpose of an action. The uninflected Infinitive was used in verb phrases with modal verbs or other verbs of incomplete predication. The Participle was a kind of verbal adjective which was characterized not only by nominal nut also by certain verbal features. Participle 1 was opposed to Participle 2 through voice and tense distinctions: it was active and expressed present or simultaneous processes and qualities, while

P2 expressed states and qualities resulting from past action and was contrasted to P1 as passive to active, if the verb was transitive. P2 of intransitive had an active meaning. Participles were employed predicatively and attributively like adjectives and shared their grammatical categories: they were declined as weak and strong and agreed with nouns in number, gender and case. ME. The development of analytical forms and new grammatical categories has transformed the verbals. Compound forms of the Infinitive appeared (passive Inf, perfect Inf, cont and perf cont). Part 1 perf, non-perf, pass and active. Compound forms of the ing form used in the functions of a noun, that is the Gerund, were the last to appear.

 

23. The rise of analytical forms in the verbal system in ME

 

The development of analytical forms and new grammatical categories has transformed not only the finite verb but also the verbals.

 

24. The infinitive in the history of English

 

In many respects it was closer to the nouns and adjectives than to the finite verb: its nominal features were far more obvious than their verbal features, especially at the morphological level. Like finite forms it could take direct objects and be modified by adverbs. Infinitive had no verbal grammatical categories. Being a verbal noun by origin, it had a sort of reduced case-system: two forms which roughly corresponded to the Nom. And the Dat. Cases of nouns. Like the Dat. Case of nouns the inflected Infinitive with the preposition to could be used to indicate the direction or purpose of an action. The uninflected Infinitive was used in verb phrases with modal verbs or other verbs of incomplete predication. The development of analytical forms and new grammatical categories has transformed the verbals. In ME texts we find different types of compound Inf: the Pass Inf, the Perf Inf in the Active and Pass forms. Evidently in the 17th c the Inf had the same set of forms as it has in present-day English.

 

25. The Participle in OE and its further development

 

In OE there were two non-finite forms of the verb: the Infinitive and the Participle. In many respects it was closer to the nouns and adjectives than to the finite verb: its nominal features were far more obvious than their verbal features, especially at the morphological level. Like finite forms it could take direct objects and be modified by adverbs. The Participle was a kind of verbal adjective which was characterized not only by nominal nut also by certain verbal features. Participle 1 was opposed to Participle 2 through voice and tense distinctions: it was active and expressed present or simultaneous processes and qualities, while

P2 expressed states and qualities resulting from past action and was contrasted to P1 as passive to active, if the verb was transitive. P2 of intransitive had an active meaning; it indicate a past action and was opposed to P1 only through tense. P! was fprmed from the Present tense stem with the help of the suffix ende. P2

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