Published on February 18, 2014
Scandinavian Languages (The North Germanic languages) Malaki Marina 3LM3
The North Germanic Languagesmake up one of the three branches of the Germanic languages, a sub-family of the IndoEuropean languages, along with the West Germanic languages and the extinct East Germanic languages.
The term “Scandinavian” arose in the 18th century as a result of the early linguistic and cultural Scandinavian movement, referring to the peoples, cultures, and languages of the three Scandinavian countries and stressing their common heritage.
All the modern Germanic languages are closely related; they become progressively closer grammatically and lexically when traced back to the earliest records. This suggests that they all derive from a still earlier common ancestor, which is traditionally referred to as Proto-Germanic and which is believed to have broken from the other Indo-European languages
Linguistic Groups The Germanic languages today are conventionally divided into three linguistic groups: East Germanic, North Germanic, and West Germanic. This division had begun by the 4th cent.
North Germanic Languages are spoken by about 20 million people, chiefly in Denmark, the Faeroe Islands, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden
NGL have several distinctive grammatical features in common adding of the definite article to the noun as a suffix. Thus "the book" in English is expressed in Swedish as boken, "book-the" (bok meaning "book" and en meaning "the" ). distinctive is a method of forming the passive voice by adding -s to the end of the verb or, in the case of the present tense, by changing the active ending -r to -s (st in Icelandic). This is illustrated by the Swedish jag kaller, "I call" ; jag kallas, "I am called" ; jag kallade, "I called" ; jag kallades, "I was called."
Classification North Germanic family tree is divided into two main branches, West Scandinavian languages (Norwegian, Faroese and Icelandic) and East Scandinavian languages(Danish and Swedish), along with various dialects and varieties. There was also an Old Gutnishbranch spoken on the island of Gotland.
Classification by mutual intelligibility Norwegian, Danish, and Swedish as Continental Scandinavian Faroese and Icelandic as Insular Scandinavian. Because of the long political union between Norway and Denmark, moderate and conservative forms of Norwegian Bokmål share most of the Danish vocabulary and grammar, and was virtually identical to written Danish until the spelling reform of 1907.
History Sweden left the Kalmar union in 1523 due to conflicts with Denmark, leaving two Scandinavian units: the union of Denmark-Norway (ruled from Copenhagen, Denmark) and Sweden (including present-day Finland). The two countries were taking different sides during several wars until 1814 and made different international contacts.
History This led to different borrowings from foreign languages (Sweden had a francophone period), for example the older Swedish word vindöga (“window”) was replaced by fönster (from Middle Low German), whereas native vindue was kept in Danish. Norwegians, who spoke (and still speak) the Norwegian dialects derived from Old Norse, would say vindauga or similar. The written language of Denmark-Norway however, was based on the dialect of Copenhagen and thus had vindue. On the other hand, the word begynde (“begin”, now written begynne in Norwegian Bokmål) was borrowed into Danish and Norwegian, whereas native börja was
Common Features the first Germanic sound shift or consonant shift (also called Grimm's law), which set the Germanic subfamily apart from the other members of the Indo-European family. For example, the sounds p, d, t, and k in the former became f, t, th, and h respectively in the latter, as in Latin pater, English father; Latin dent, English tooth; and Latin cornu, English horn.
Common Features Before the 8th cent a second shift of consonants took place in some of the West German dialects. under certain circumstances, d became t, and t became ss or z, as in English bread, Dutch brood, but German Brot; English foot, Dutch voet, but German Fuss; and English ten, Dutch tien, but German zehn.
Common Features Recessive Accent, whereby the stress usually falls on the first or root syllable of a word, especially a word of Germanic origin. Umlaut a type of vowel change in the root of a word. It is demonstrated in the pairs foot (singular), feet (plural) in English; fot(singular), fötter (plural) in Swedish; and Kampf (singular), Kämpfe (plural) in German
Common Features of Scandinavian Languages the loss of initial j, as is seen by comparing the Danish, Swedish, and Norwegian år and the Icelandic ár with the English “year” and the German Jahr. The w disappeared before rounded vowels; the Danish, Swedish, and Norwegian ord and the Icelandic oró stand in contrast to the English “word” and the German Wort. Rising diphthongs appeared in the Scandinavian languages but not in the other Germanic languages; this can be seen by comparing the Danish and Norwegian hjerte, the Swedish hjärta, and the Icelandic hjarta with the English “heart” and the German Herz.
Common Features of Scandinavian Languages Numerous consonant assimilations are confined to Scandinavian, as is seen when the Danish and Norwegian drikke, the Swedish dricka, and the Icelandic drekka are compared with the English “drink” and the German trinken. Numerous consonant assimilations are confined to Scandinavian, as is seen when the Danish and Norwegian drikke, the Swedish dricka, and the Icelandic drekka are compared with the English “drink” and the German trinken.
The first written documents to reflect features of the Scandinavian languages are runic inscriptions of the eighth to 11th centuries, written in early (Danish-Norwegian and Swedish) runes. In the 12th and 13th centuries, Latin script came into use in Scandinavia; the first Old Norse manuscripts date to this time. The Poetic Edda, the Prose Edda, sagas, and other works were composed in Old Icelandic, which is thus the main representative of the older Scandinavian languages.
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