Languages are always evolving in a process that is never truly finished. So to ask what the oldest word in a given language is, is a bit pointless. We can ask, however, what the oldest attested word in a given language, like English, is, which is what’s examined in this article.
The High German Consonant Shift gave rise to the High and Upper German dialects of the West Germanic Dialect Continuum. It’s cause is still debated, however, although a Gallo-Roman substrate seems to be the most likely explanation.
Originally posted on Tattúínárdǿla saga:
A long time ago, in a North Atlantic far far away… Introduction Earlier this week I was drawn into an enlightening discussion with my colleague Ben Frey about the complicated textual tradition that lies behind George Lucas’s “Star Wars,” which few outside the scholarly community realize is…
Originally posted on Kristyn J. Miller:
Epic poems have incredible staying power both as literary achievements and as historical resources. The Anglo-Saxon epic Beowulf is one of the foremost examples of this. Despite its mythological themes, the story offers historians a rare insight into Anglo-Saxon ideals of masculinity, heroism, and society. At the same time,…
Ragnarok describes the end of the world in Norse Mythology. Or does it really? Not only the world itself is reborn after its destruction, but one of the gods as well. Could this be an indication for reincarnation in Germanic myth or perhaps even evidence for a pan-Indo-European phenomenon of rebirth?