By Hannah Crawforth
How did authors reminiscent of Jonson, Spenser, Donne and Milton take into consideration the earlier lives of the phrases they used? Hannah Crawforth indicates how early sleek writers have been acutely attuned to the non secular and political implications of the etymology of English phrases. She argues that those lexically astute writers actively engaged with the lexicographers, Anglo-Saxonists and etymologists who have been conducting a countrywide undertaking to recuperate, or invent, the origins of English, at a time while the query of a countrywide vernacular used to be inseparable from that of nationwide identification. English phrases are deployed to specific impact - as a polemical weapon, allegorical equipment, coded type of conversation, form of ancient allusion or political software. Drawing jointly early glossy literature and linguistics, Crawforth argues that the background of English because it was once studied within the interval considerably underpins the writing of its maximum poets.
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Additional resources for Etymology and the Invention of English in Early Modern Literature
81–2 and gloss, ll. 79, 80, 90, 105). This series of conspicuously Middle English words reminds Spenser’s readers of the abuses that helped justify the prohibition of cler ical marriage under late-Medieval Catholicism. Additional emphasis is given to this collection of terms by their shared derivation, borrowed from Anglo-Norman and having Latin roots, an etymology displayed 48 Paul J. Patterson, ‘Reforming Chaucer: Margins and Religion in an Apocryphal Canterbury Tale’, Book History 8 (2005): 11–36.
Editor Robert Crowley added these rapidly multiplying annotations to emphasize what he discerns to be an anti-papal strand in the poem. Larry Scanlon writes: ‘In Crowley’s second and third imprints, apparently intended to be indistinguishable, he substantially expanded his supporting apparatus. To the preface of approximately 700 words to the first imprint, Crowley added a passus-by-passus summary of the poem, a little under 3,000 words in length. ’ Crowley’s edition was further reprinted in 1561, the same year as Stow’s Chaucer.
Blodgett, ‘William Thynne’, in Paul G. ) Editing Chaucer: The Great Tradition (Norman, OK: Pilgrim Books, 1984), 35–54, 36. 13 Spenser’s poetic manifesto as it is articulated by E. K. bears striking similarities to the arguments for the Anglo-Saxon translation of spiritual texts recovered by the Parker circle. E. 14 But what is most striking about the notes that accompany the Calender, and about E. ’s remarks, is the vivid sense they create of English as a language that both is and is not familiar to those who consider it their native tongue.