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Northumbrian & Geordie: origin

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 Message 1 of 3
11 October 2012 at 9:33pm | IP Logged 
I almost called this thread "Birth of (an) English Dialect as a mirror image of another thread, but thought I ought to make it more specific.

An interesting website about the North-East in general but a lot about the origins of Geordie and Northumbrian dialects in particular.

It also has a bearing on the development of English as a whole I think.

History of Northumbria

Kingdon of Northumbria

Viking Northumbria

Geordie Origins


Geordie Dictionary

There are quite a few pages on the site and those are just samples.

This is also interesting, if not as nicely laid out as the other site:
Tyneside and Northumbrian Dialect

I must say, it seems counter-intuitive to me that Geordie & Northumbrian would not have been particularly influenced by Scandinavian, but that indeed seems to be the case. There is some influence of course, but some of the dialect and placename evidence seems ambiguous. For example the Geordie for "house" is "hoos", but that could be both Anglo-Saxon and Scandinavian. Similarly the placename suffix -wick, as in Berwick, could be either.

In fact it seems that Northumbria held on to their original Anglo-Saxon ("Anglian") in the face of the Viking invasions longer than other parts of England, and Geordie and Northumbrian dialect may be the oldest (or perhaps only) living relics of that original Anglo-Saxon. Added to which, Scandinavian gradually affected English in many parts of England, not just where Viking settlement was strong, so such evidence of Scandinavian words as there is does not necessarily imply a strong level Scandinavian settlement in Northumbria; there was some, but not as strong as elsewhere, e.g. Cumbria or Yorkshire.

However, we have to be careful: the Angles, from the Angeln peninsula of what is modern southern Denmark, probably spoke a language that may have been closer to Scandinavian or even Dutch than to modern German. So "Anglian" and the language of the Viking invaders may not have been that far apart.

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 Message 2 of 3
26 April 2015 at 10:09am | IP Logged 
This is a very interesting post for me as I'm from Newcastle-upon-Tyne, up here we're always told that our
accent is the closest to medieval English and Modern German in the whole of the UK.
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 Message 3 of 3
26 April 2015 at 10:09pm | IP Logged 
"hoos" sounds very similar to Danish "hus", but maybe it is both--Northumbria and Durham
the region with both the largest number of Scandinavian and Ængelsc influences?

Regarding the accent, I never thought about whether it sounded like Danish. Or do you
mean sounding like a Dane speaking English? Anyway I miss living in the toon. Eldon
Square, The Gate, Bigg Market...

Edited by 1e4e6 on 26 April 2015 at 11:25pm

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