Grammatical "Errors" in Shakespeare
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0386 Thursday, 10 July 2008
From: Jonathan Hope <
Date: Tuesday, 8 Jul 2008 10:57:19 +0100
Subject: 19.0384 Grammatical "Errors" in Shakespeare
Comment: RE: SHK 19.0384 Grammatical "Errors" in Shakespeare
It is kind of people to mention my work in relation to this thread. Norman
Blake's *A Grammar of Shakespeare's Language* is certainly longer and covers
more than I do - in fact, the original questioner will find Blake's 'Conclusion'
(pp. 326-331) very helpful with regard to prescriptivist comment on Shakespeare.
As Norman notes there, Lowth's *Short Introduction to English Grammar* (1762) is
a goldmine of this kind of thing, and Abbott (*A Shakespearian Grammar* 1870)
has a run of paragraphs on 'Irregularities' - 406ff.
That may be as far as the questioner wants to go, but it is interesting to note,
as a corrective to late C17th and C18th prescriptivism, that earlier grammars of
English routinely, and matter of factly, included variable forms in their
descriptions (see Terttu Nevalainen's excellent *Introduction to Early Modern
English* (Edinburgh 2006) - chapter 2 - and the more detailed work of Ute Dons,
*Descriptive Adequacy of Early Modern English Grammars* (2004: Mouton).
Strathclyde University, Glasgow http://www.strath.ac.uk/english/courses/renaissance/
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