328 Study Questions: Baugh Chapter Three:
Old English, Middle English, Modern English, Anglo-Saxon,
Goidelic, Brythonic, chronicle, wergild, compurgation,
declension, synthetic language, analytic language, dual,
strong verb, weak verb, dental suffix, dialect, thorn,
eth, ash, inflection, nominative, genitive,
dative, ablative, affix, prefix, suffix, syntax, compounding,
kenning, elegy, saint's lives
Identification: The Venerable Bede, Julius
Caesar, Emperor Claudius, Boadicea, The Ecclesiastical
History of the English People, eorls, cheorls,
King Egbert, King Alfred
Abbreviations: OE (Old English) ME (Middle
English), MnE (Modern English) A-S (Anglo-Saxon)
3.29 How long have the British islands
been occupied by prehistoric man according to moderate estimates?
About what date, according to Baugh, marks the end of the
Stone Age in Britain?
When did iron tools displace bronze ones in England?
The Stone Age is typically divided into what two periods
meaning "Old Stone Age" and "New Stone Age"?
About what rough date did the Neolithic period begin in
What ethnic group in the Spanish Pyrenees possibly represents
the last remnant of the dark-haired "Mediterranean"
Neolithic tribes that once dwelled throughout Europe and
What is the first race living in England that has left us
any knowledge of their language?
3.30 What famous Roman general, after conquering
the Celts of Gaul (modern France and Germany) decided to
conquer the Celts living in Britain during the summer of
55 BCE? How successful was this first Roman invasion?
3.31 What Emperor actually succeeded in
conquering the Celts living in modern-day England? What
two regions of Britain were the Romans never able to conquer?
3.32 What engineering advantages and civilized
advantages did the Romans import to conquered Celtic lands?
By the third century, what new religious movement had members
in London and York?
3.33 Did Latin replace Celtic languages
in Britain? Why or why not? [How does this contrast with
In the year 410, who or what left the British isles officially?
How do you suppose this is connected to the Germanic invasions
that later occurred in 449 and later?
3.34 What happened in 449 that must have
caused some political upheaval in Britain? Where does this
tradition date for the event come from (i.e., what two historical
Excluding the Frisians, what three Germanic tribes composed
the primary waves of invaders?
What peninsula was originally the home for the
Angles and Jutes? What part of Germany was the original
homeland of the Saxons?
What fatal agreement did the Celtic ruler Vortigern strike
up with the Jutes?
What Germanic tribe invaded the island yet again in 477
In 547, what Germanic tribe established an Anglican kingdom
north of the Umber? (Hint: etymology
may be helpful here if you've forgotten the answer!)
3.35 When the Celts were driven out of
England, to what regions did they flee seeking refuge?
What is the difference between an eorl
and a cheorl?
What is the legal practice of wergild and compurgation
among Anglo-Saxon and Germanic tribes?
3.36 Where do the words English
and England come from?
3.37 English comes from which branch of
the Germanic languages?
In Old English, weak or regular verbs indicate the past
tense and past participle by adding what suffix to the end
of the verb?
Where does the stress tend to fall in an English word--much
like in other Germanic languages?
Did English go through the Second Sound Shift the way High
German did? What evidence reveals the truth one way or another?
3.38 What are the three main periods of
English history? List one characteristic of each.
3.39 What are the four dialects of Old
Anglian is a collective term for what two dialects of Old
What is the only dialect of Old English for which we have
an extensive collection of written texts?
What dialect became a sort of literary standard over time?
3.40 In terms of pronunciation, what is
the biggest difference in Old English? (i.e., what sort
of phonetic sound has undergone the most considerable modification?)
What are some examples of letters used in Old English that
are no longer used in Modern English?
In terms of etymology, what type of words are conspicuously
absent in Old English that form a large part of our current
What is the difference between an analytic language and
a synthetic language? How does an analytic language establish
who is doing what in a sentence? How does a synthetic language
provide that information?
Is Modern English analytic or synthetic?
Is Old English analytic or synthetic?
Old English grammar strongly resembles what modern language?
Why is this unsurprising, given the derivation of English?
Lecture: Give two examples of an analytic
Give two examples of a synthetic language.
Note!! The Old English noun only has four cases. Today,
nouns only inflect to show number (one
cow, two cows), possession
(the cow's horn), and very rarely, some
nouns inflect to show gender (actor,
actress). What sort of inflections did
Old English have in the distant past? In general, was the
inflection of nouns more or less complicated than the inflections
we currently use in Modern English?
3.42 How many grammatical genders did
Old English have? Was this based on natural gender or grammatical
3.43 Old English had two declensions for
adjectives--a strong and weak declension. When was each
type of declension used?
3.44 How many inflections does modern English
have for the definite article (i.e., the word the)?
How is this different in Old English, i.e.,--how many inflections
does it have? (see the chart in your textbook and count
for both singular and plural). Note that on a test, it is
acceptable here to simply write that Old English has a fully
inflected definite article for all three genders.
Where does the modern demonstrative pronoun that
3.45 According to Baugh, what part of speech
is always likely to preserve a fairly complete system of
inflections even after other inflections die out?
In addition to singular and plural personal pronouns, Old
English had a third category for number. What was that third
3.46 Old English had only two tenses for
verbs--what are these two tenses? How does this explain
the joke among Anglo-Saxonists who tell their students,
"There is no future in Anglo-Saxon studies"?
Old English verbs fall into two classes--weak and strong
verbs. What are these types usually called in Modern English
Give an example of a Modern English verb that comes from
a strong verb.
Give an example of a Modern English verb that comes from
a weak verb.
Suppose a child asked you, "Why do we say 'I swim,
I swam, and I have swum' rather than 'I swim, I swimmed,
and I have swimmed?'" How would you explain this given
your knowledge of Old English verbs?
About how many Old English verbs fall into the "strong
What is a dental suffix?
Which verb form, the weak or the strong conjugation, has
become dominant in our language today?
3.48 Old English had a much smaller vocabulary
than Modern English. How does Baugh suggest that Old English
overcame this limitation?
3.49 Germanic languages like Old English
tend to make new words by using what method?
Give an example of this process in Modern English.
3.50 For the Old English speakers, how
was the use of prefixes and suffixes helpful in creating
the use of compounding to create poetic kennings.
3.51 What does Baugh see as the greatest
work of Anglo-Saxon literature? How many lines long is this
poem approximately (to the nearest thousand)?
Given Baugh's descriptions and summaries of Anglo-Saxon
poetry, which of the following topics is one the Anglo-Saxons
tend not to deal with? (a) violent combat, (b) the transitory
nature of life, (c) monsters, (d) love and sexuality, (e)
Christian topics and saint's lives.
What "great" ruler personally translated or ordered
his scholars to translate Latin works into Old English for
his subjects, bringing about the first formal state educational
system in England since the fall of the Roman Empire?