Article published in:English Historical Linguistics 2010: Selected Papers from the Sixteenth International Conference on English Historical Linguistics (ICEHL 16), Pécs, 23-27 August 2010
Edited by Irén Hegedűs and Alexandra Fodor
[Current Issues in Linguistic Theory 325] 2012
► pp. 73–94
Monetary policy and Old English dialects
Studies of Old English dialects are based heavily on manuscript texts, of which none survive from Anglo-Saxon East Anglia. But coins produced in the kingdom bear forms of personal names, potential evidence for an East-Anglian dialect. Although East Anglia in the eighth and ninth centuries came under dogged Mercian control, this paper hypothesises that, just as Kentish coin-spellings conform to dialect characteristics of Kentish manuscripts, rather than to those of the dominating Mercians and West-Saxons, so the East-Anglian moneyers represented their own dialect on their coins. Somewhat deflatingly, the coin-spellings show nothing specifically ‘East’ about the Anglian features represented.
Published online: 13 November 2012