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Home :: Archive :: 1997 :: October ::
Re: Two Questions; Pronunciation
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 8.0985.  Wednesday, 1 October 1997.

[1]     From:   Kenneth Meaney <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 30 Sep 1997 16:36:11 +0200
        Subj:   Re: SHK 8.0974   Two Questions

[2]     From:   Larry Schwartz <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 30 Sep 1997 09:11:17 -0500 (CDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 8.0975  Re: Two Questions; Pronunciation

[3]     From:   Roger Gross <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 30 Sep 1997 09:37:59 -0500 (CDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 8.0975  Re: feminine endings


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Kenneth Meaney <
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Date:           Tuesday, 30 Sep 1997 16:36:11 +0200
Subject: 8.0974   Two Questions
Comment:        Re: SHK 8.0974   Two Questions

>(1) Can someone please direct me to a good book on
>early modern pronunciation? I'm trying to follow up on a suggestion that
>Shakespeare's "nothing" would have sounded not much different from
>"noting."

I suggest the chapter on phonology in Charles Barber's _Early Modern
English_ (1976).

The notion of a pun on "nothing" and "noting" is, I think, a kite that
won't fly. "Nothing" is, etymologically, "no" + "thing" and the initial
consonant in "thing" has been a fricative since Anglo-Saxon times. It
seems inconceivable that it would have enjoyed a brief interval as a
stop in the early modern period and I know of no evidence for such a
pronunciation.  It is true that some words _written_ with a "th" were
pronounced with a stop - Barber cites words like "author" and
"authority" - but these were borrowed from French in the Middle English
period, and originally pronounced as in French.

Ken Meaney

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Larry Schwartz <
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Date:           Tuesday, 30 Sep 1997 09:11:17 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: 8.0975  Re: Two Questions; Pronunciation
Comment:        Re: SHK 8.0975  Re: Two Questions; Pronunciation

Mention was made of a title by Gert Ronberg.  The title, according to an
online version of Books In Print, follows:

       Author: Ronberg, Gert
        Title: A Way with Words The Language of English Renaissance
Literature
    Publisher: New York : Routledge, Chapman & Hall, Incorporated, Sept.
1992
 ISBN/Details: 0340493070;Trade Paper USD 14.95 R Active Record
    Keywords:  ENGLISH LITERATURE--HISTORY AND CRITICISM--EARLY MODERN,
1500-1700
    Keywords:  LITERATURE--HISTORY, CRITICISM AND SURVEYS
    Keywords:  RENAISSANCE--ENGLAND
    Keywords:  RHETORIC--1500-1800
    Keywords:  ENGLISH LANGUAGE--EARLY MODERN, 1500-1700

In my business, a correct citation is EVERYTHING.  ls.

[3]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Roger Gross <
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Date:           Tuesday, 30 Sep 1997 09:37:59 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: 8.0975  Re: feminine endings
Comment:        Re: SHK 8.0975  Re: feminine endings

Please don't believe anything as simple as that feminine endings mean
lying.  Or mean any one thing.  Or any ten things.

The one reasonable generalization is that feminine endings are
meaningful.  What they mean depends on the dramatic context.

Roger Gross
U. Arkansas
 

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