Re: Hivemind request for decyphering old English

From: Julian Bradfield (
Date: Thu Mar 04 2010 - 07:39:44 CST

  • Next message: Michael Everson: "Re: Hivemind request for decyphering old English"

    On 2010-03-04, verdy_p <> wrote:
    > Why do they think it is written in Old English ?

    They don't. They think it's written in English.

    > Couldn't that be a Celtic language, or a Nordic language ? Was Old english already universal through the kingdom of
    > England, around year 1500 ?

    Old English was several hundred years earlier. And yes, English was
    the universal vernacular in England, apart from in bits of
    Cornwall. Salisbury is not in Cornwall, not anywhere near any of the
    other language regions in Britain at the time.

    > and the other letter shapes are quite unusual for the epoch, as well as some diacritics which look similar to
    > Brahmic scripts (for noting vowels?).

    In what way unusual? You can find that style of gothic (or Old English
    as we call it!) script anywhen from C13 to the present, though I
    agree it looks more characteristic of a century earlier than the date
    they have (Perhaps the writer was quite old.). The "diacritics", which
    are abbreviations for letter combinations, were also common (though
    they originated for use with Latin and French, and I don't think their
    use in English was ever established as firmly as it was for those

    > Why not also a Tzigane/Rom language (these languages were traditionnally oral), more or less mixed with some
    > English, in a script just adapted to look like Latin? After all they were Catholic Christians since long.

    Yeah right - a educated Gypsy painting in formal script on the wall of a
    cathedral. Sure....

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