Skip to comments.Linguist Makes Sensational Claim: English Is a Scandinavian Language
Posted on 11/29/2012 2:59:29 PM PST by Renfield
"Have you considered how easy it is for us Norwegians to learn English?" asks Jan Terje Faarlund, professor of linguistics at the University of Oslo. "Obviously there are many English words that resemble ours. But there is something more: its fundamental structure is strikingly similar to Norwegian. We avoid many of the usual mistakes because the grammar is more or less the same.
Faarlund and his colleague Joseph Emmonds, visiting professor from Palacký University in the Czech Republic, now believe they can prove that English is in reality a Scandinavian language, in other words it belongs to the Northern Germanic language group, just like Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, Icelandic and Faroese. This is totally new and breaks with what other language researchers and the rest of the world believe, namely that English descends directly from Old English. Old English, or Anglo-Saxon, is a West Germanic language, which the Angles and Saxons brought with them from Northern Germany and Southern Jylland when they settled in the British Isles in the fifth century....
(Excerpt) Read more at sciencedaily.com ...
Muzzies will make the claim it is a Muzzie language!
I always thought it was Germanic tho there are a lot of Latin root words too.
Despite the fact that there are a lot of free words, I failed German in college.
I think it’s easier to support the idea that tribes broke off from Germany and went to Britain and Scandanavian than from Scandinavia to Britain.
“From this day on, the official language of San Marcos will be Swedish.”
His noticing some similar words is two things. Norwegian is a separate branch on the north Germanic tree. (some Angles spread north into Scandinavia, just as some spread to the British Isles. So of course there are similarities.
The other thing is that mouch more recently that the Angle’s migrations, Vikings raided and spread much influence in Britian. They left DNA, words, and technology.
But English is not accurately described as descended from Norwegian. Separate tree, with later contacts sharing a few words. And of course, as always, English readily incorporates the new words, as it did with French, Spanish, Latin, etc. This is the strength of English. No rules, and we absorb and grow.
In many cases this is how we wound up with two words for the same thing. “Sick” and “ill” are an example. One is old English, the other is Norse. So we just started using both.
Every time I say “Hinga Dinga Durgen”, the kiddies wish me a Happy Leif Erikson Day.
As the offspring of an English teacher....I thought that was common knowledge. Of course, there was a huge impact of French on Old English after the Norman invasion.
You may be interested.
Second response: he has an interesting point about the grammar or syntax. But that tends to become simplified over time. Who's to say that a "West Germanic" language didn't adopted a simpler grammar on its own -- or through later influence by North Germanic invaders? If English vocabulary is much closer to Dutch than to Norwegian, wouldn't that make English a West Germanic language (whatever later changes it went through)?
Be all that as it may, Scots (Lallans, not Gaelic, though there was some influence there as well) was heavily influenced by Scandinavian Vikings, as was English (only more so).
This works for languages and economies.
It’s not so far out. English is a mix of German (through the Saxons), French (through the Normans), Latin (through language of the scholars and the Church), and Scandinavian (through the Danes who settled in Eastern England, and indirectly through the Normans).
Yes. I was skeptical till I read this paragraph.
The two researchers show that the sentence structure in Middle English -- and thus also Modern English -- is Scandinavian and not Western Germanic. "It is highly irregular to borrow the syntax and structure from one language and use it in another language. In our days the Norwegians are borrowing words from English, and many people are concerned about this. However, the Norwegian word structure is totally unaffected by English. It remains the same. The same goes for the structure in English: it is virtually unaffected by Old English."
That's a very powerful point. German word order is very different from English and the word order in English does not seem to have been affected by its heavy exposure to the Romans or the Normans though the vocabulary was. Very interesting theory, indeed.
The categories are something we (in a way) create.”
Kant? Is that you? I thought you were long dead!
One of my least favorite dates is 1066.
Leif Edison made the first functioning light bulb by passing an electrical current through a herring. I’ll never forget those words as the Norwegians landed on the moon.....”The Herring has landed.”
I lived on Jylland, Denmark between October 1960 and December 1961 and in Copenhagen for another two years and became totally fluent in Danish. I always found it interesting when speaking with farmers in remote villages in that their dialect sounded more like English than Danish.
Norwegian and Danish are virtually the same written language but the Danish is in the throat and Norwegian is closer to the lips, hence the accents are totally different. It takes me a week of listening to Norwegian for my ear to begin to hear the language.
Fabulous people and great places. Their politics stink.
I had to take German as a requirement for my course of college studies. I had a prof. from Germany who was not easy to understand. I passed with a good grade but have often wondered if it would have been easier learning if I had a German speaking English prof.
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