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ANGLO-SAXON OF THE ELEVENTH CENTURY, COMPARED WITH ENGLISH




 

Saxon,--11th Century.[50] LUCE, CAP. I.

" On Herodes dagum Iudea cynincges, was sum sacred on naman Zacharias, of Abian tune: and his wif was of Aarones dohtrum, and hyre nama waas Elizabeth.

Sothlice hig waron butu rihtwise beforan Gode, gangende on eallum his bebodum and rihtwisnessum, butan wrohte.

And hig nafdon nan bearn, fortham the Elizabeth was unberende; and hy on hyra dagum butu forth-eodun.

Sothlice was geworden tha Zacharias hys sacerdhades breac on his gewrixles endebyrdnesse beforan Gode,

Efter gewunan thas sacerdhades hlotes, he eode that he his offrunge sette, tha he on Godes tempel eode.

Eall werod thas folces was ute gebiddende on thare offrunge timan.

Tha atywde him Drihtnes engel standende on thas weofodes swithran healfe.

Tha weard Zacharias gedrefed that geseonde, and him ege onhreas.

Tha cwath se engel him to, Ne ondrad thu the Zacharias; fortham thin ben is gehyred, and thin wif Elizabeth the sunu centh, and thu nemst hys naman Johannes."--Saxon Gospels.

"In the dayes of Eroude kyng of Judee ther was a prest Zacarye by name, of the sort of Abia: and his wyf was of the doughtris of Aaron, and hir name was Elizabeth.

And bothe weren juste bifore God, goynge in alle the maundementis and justifyingis of the Lord, withouten playnt.

And thei hadden no child, for Elizabeth was bareyn; and bothe weren of greet age in her dayes.

And it befel that whanne Zacarye schould do the office of presthod in the ordir of his course to fore God,

Aftir the custom of the presthood, he wente forth by lot, and entride into the temple to encensen.

And al the multitude of the puple was without forth and preyede in the our of encensying.

And an aungel of the Lord apperide to him, and stood on the right half of the auter of encense. 12. And Zacarye seyinge was afrayed, and drede fel upon him.

And the aungel sayde to him, Zacarye, drede thou not; for thy preier is herd, and Elizabeth thi wif schal bere to thee a sone, and his name schal be clepid Jon."

Wickliffe's Bible, 1380.

English.--17th Century.

LUKE, CHAP. I.

" There was in the days of Herod the king of Judea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth.

And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord, blameless.

And they had no child, because that Elisabeth was barren; and they both were now well stricken in years.

And it came to pass, that while he executed the priest's office before God in the order of his course,

According to the custom of the priest's office, his lot was to burn incense when he went into the temple of the Lord.

And the whole multitude of the people were praying without at the time of incense.

And there appeared unto him an angel of the Lord, standing on the right side of the altar of incense.

And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him.

But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias; for thy prayer is heard, and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shall call his name John."

Common Bible, 1610.

See Dr. Johnson's History of the English Language, in his Quarto Dictionary.

 

ANGLO-SAXON IN THE TIME OF KING ALFRED

 

Alfred the Great, who was the youngest son of Ethelwolf, king of the West Saxons, succeeded to the crown on the death of his brother Ethelred, in the year 871, being then twenty-two years old. He had scarcely time to attend the funeral of his brother, before he was called to the field to defend his country against the Danes. After a reign of more than twenty-eight years, rendered singularly glorious by great achievements under difficult circumstances, he died universally lamented, on the 28th of October, A. D. 900. By this prince the university of Oxford was founded, and provided with able teachers from the continent. His own great proficiency in learning, and his earnest efforts for its promotion, form a striking contrast with the ignorance which prevailed before. "In the ninth century, throughout the whole kingdom of the West Saxons, no man could be found who was scholar enough to instruct the young king Alfred, then a child, even in the first elements of reading: so that he was in his twelfth year before he could name the letters of the alphabet. When that renowned prince ascended the throne, he made it his study to draw his people out of the sloth and stupidity in which they lay; and became, as much by his own example as by the encouragement he gave to learned men, the great restorer of arts in his dominions."--Life of Bacon.

 


Conclusion

 

The language of eulogy must often be taken with some abatement: it does not usually present things in their due proportions. How far the foregoing quotation is true, I will not pretend to say; but what is called "the revival of learning," must not be supposed to have begun at so early a period as that of Alfred. The following is a brief specimen of the language in which that great man wrote; but, printed in Saxon characters, it would appear still less like English.

"On thare tide the Gotan of Siththiu magthe with Romana rice gewin upahofon. and mith heora cyningum. Radgota and Eallerica waron hatne. Romane burig abracon. and eall Italia rice that is betwux tham muntum and Sicilia tham ealonde in anwald gerehton. and tha agter tham foresprecenan cyningum Theodric feng to tham ilcan rice se Theodric was Amulinga. he wass Cristen. theah he on tham Arrianiscan gedwolan durhwunode. He gehet Romanum his freondscype. swa that hi mostan heora ealdrichta wyrthe beon."--KING ALFRED: Johnson's Hist. of E. L., 4to Dict., p. 17.

 


LITERATURE

 

Brill, E. and Mooney, R. J. (1997), ‘An overview of empirical natural language processing', in AI Magazine, 18 (4): 13-24.

Chomsky, N. (1957), Syntactic Structures. The Hague: Mouton.

Curme, G. O. (1955), English Grammar. New York: Barnes and Noble.

Dowty, D. R., Karttunen, L. and Zwicky, A. M. (eds) (1985), Natural Language Parsing. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Garside, R. (1986), 'The CLAWS word-tagging system', in R. Garside,

G. Leech and G. Sampson (eds) The Computational Analysis of English. Harlow: Longman.

Gazdar, G. and Mellish, C. (1989), Natural Language Processing in POP-11. Reading, UK: Addison-Wesley.

Georgiev, H. (1976), 'Automatic recognition of verbal and nominal word groups in Bulgarian texts', in t.a. information, Revue International du traitement automatique du langage, 2, 17-24.

Georgiev, H. (1991), 'English Algorithmic Grammar', in Applied Computer Translation, Vol. 1, No. 3, 29-48.

Georgiev, H. (1993a), 'Syntparse, software program for parsing of English texts', demonstration at the Joint Inter-Agency Meeting on Computer-assisted Terminology and Translation, The United Nations, Geneva.

Georgiev, H. (1993b), 'Syntcheck, a computer software program for orthographical and grammatical spell-checking of English texts', demonstration at the Joint Inter-Agency Meeting on Computer-assisted Terminology and Translation, The United Nations, Geneva.

Georgiev, H. (1994—2001), Softhesaurus, English Electronic Lexicon, produced and marketed by LANGSOFT, Sprachlernmittel, Switzerland; platform: DOS/ Windows.

Georgiev, H. (1996-2001a), Syntcheck, a computer software program for orthographical and grammatical spell-checking of German texts, produced and marketed by LANGSOFT, Sprachlernmittel, Switzerland; platform: DOS/Windows.

Georgiev, H. (1996-200lb), Syntparse, software program for parsing of German texts, produced and marketed by LANGSOFT, Sprachlernmittel, Switzerland; platform: DOS/Windows.

Georgiev, H. (1997—2001a), Syntcheck, a computer software program for orthographical and grammatical spell-checking of French texts, produced and marketed by LANGSOFT, Sprachlernmittel, Switzerland; platform: DOS/Windows.

Georgiev, H. (1997-2001b), Syntparse, software program for parsing of French texts, produced and marketed by LANGSOFT, Sprachlernmittel, Switzerland; platform: DOS/Windows.





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