Lop-webbe and henne cresse: Morphological aspects of the scientific register in Late Middle English

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Adam Mickiewicz University

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The aim of the present paper is to present an approach to the vernacularisation of English scientific texts with special attention to lexicon. Word-formation is a better indicator than other linguistic levels of the extent to which the scientific register is adapted to the vernacular because such vernacularisation can be seen clearly when scientific items reproduce the patterns of the general lexicon. To this end, we will attempt to measure the degree of development of the vernacular scientific register by analysing word-formation processes. It is also our intention to ascertain whether there is a predominance of one particular linguistic stratum in texts of that kind from the late Middle Ages, unveiling the etymological origin of some lexical items of diverse provenance. The paper is therefore divided into four sections. In section 1 the socio-historical context of the scientific register is described briefly. Section 2 covers the processes of lexical enrichment in Middle English due to word-formation. The presentation of the corpus material and the analysis of data is dealt with in the third section. Finally, section 4 contains the conclusions reached in the light of previous research.





Studia Anglica Posnaniensia, vol. 42 (2006), pp. 133-145



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Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu
Biblioteka Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu
Ministerstwo Nauki i Szkolnictwa Wyższego