Book Series Utrecht Studies in Medieval Literacy, vol. 24

Spoken and Written Language

Relations between Latin and the Vernacular Languages in the Earlier Middle Ages

Mary Garrison, Arpad P. Orbán, Marco Mostert (eds)

  • Pages: 364 p.
  • Size:156 x 234 mm
  • Illustrations:8 b/w, 4 col.
  • Language(s):English, German, French
  • Publication Year:2013

  • ISBN: 978-2-503-50770-5
  • Hardback
  • Available
  • ISBN: 978-2-503-54321-5
  • E-book
  • Available


"As the above survey should hopefully indicate, this book contains many valuable contributions to the study of Latin and the vernaculars, (...)". (Juliet Mullins, in: Óenach: FMRSI Reviews, 5.2, 2013, p. 32-36)

"(...) the volume is definitely worth reading." (Eleanor Dickey, in: Journal of English and Germanic Philology, Vol. 113/4, October 2014, p. 518)

"(...) the whole book (...) successfully presents a very colourful picture. (...) the book is ultimately an important contribution to the research on medieval multilingualism." (Lucie Doležalová, in: The Journal of Medieval Latin, Vol. 24, 2014, p. 294-297)

"(...) the articles are imaginative, original, insightful, deeply-learned, and informative." (Gernot Wieland, in: Mittellateinisches Jahrbuch, 50.2, 2015, p. 338-341)

"This book is of interest to those studying the interaction of Old English or other vernaculars and Latin, and is especially useful in placing Old English in a wider European vernacular context." (Christine Wallis, in: Year's Work in English Studies, 94.1, 2015, p. 130)


The linguistic situation of medieval Europe has sometimes been characterized as one of diglossia: one learned language, Latin, was used for religion, law, and documents, while the various vernaculars were used in other linguistic registers. Informing the relationship between Latin and the vernaculars was the choice of Latin as the language of the Western Roman Empire and the Roman Church. This choice entailed the possibility of a shared literary culture and heritage across Europe, but also had consequences for access to that heritage. Scholarship on the Romance languages has contested the relevance of the term diglossia, and the divergence between written or spoken Latin and Romance is a subject of energetic debate. In other linguistic areas, too, questions have been voiced. How can one characterize the interaction between Latin and the various vernaculars, and between the various vernaculars themselves? To what extent could speakers from separate linguistic worlds communicate? These questions are fundamental for anyone concerned with communication, the transmission of learning, literary history, and cultural interaction in the Middle Ages. This volume contains contributions by historians, cultural historians, and students of texts, language, and linguistics, addressing the subject from their various perspectives but at the same time trying to overcome familiar disciplinary divisions.




Trace Elements of Obliterated Vernacular Languages in Latin Texts - MICHAEL RICHTER

Qu’une femme ne peut pas être appelée homme: Questions de langue et d’anthropologie autour du concile de Mâcon (585) - A. DEMYTTENAERE

Wie groß war der Einfluß des Griechischen auf die Sprache der (ersten) lateinischen Christen? - ARPÁD ORBÁN

Die Figur des Dolmetschers in der biographischen Literatur des westlichen Mittelalters (IV.-XII. Jh.) - WALTER BERSCHIN

Nordic Digraphia and Diglossia - INGER LARSSON

The Non-Classical Vocabulary of Celtic Latin Literature: An Overview - ANTHONY HARVEY

The Cena Adamnani or Seventh-Century Table Talk - MICHAEL W. HERREN

Latin and Old English in Ninth-Century Canterbury - NICHOLAS BROOKS

A Sociophilological Study of the Change to Official Romance Documentation in Castile - ROGER WRIGHT

L’ancien français (archaïque) et le fonctionnement de la communication verticale latine en Gaule (VIIe-VIIIe siècles) - MARC VAN UYTFANGHE

Quelques exemples de compromis morphologiques au VIIIe siècle en Francia - MICHEL BANNIARD

Latin Grammars and the Structure of the Vernacular Old Irish Auraicept na nÉces - RIJCKLOF HOFMAN

From Monks’ Jokes to Sages’ Wisdom: The Joca Monachorum Tradition and the Irish Immacallam in dáThúarad - CHARLES D. WRIGHT

Writing in Latin and the Vernacular: The Case of Old High German - DENNIS GREEN

Volkssprachige Glossen für lateinkundige Leser? - ROLF BERGMANN

Rustice vel Teodisce appellatur oder: Warum schreibt man Glossen? - AREND QUAK

Typen und Funktionen volkssprachiger (althochdeutschen) Eintragungen im lateinischen Kontext - ELVIRA GLASER

Liturgical Latin in Early Medieval Gaul - ELS ROSE

Sprach Ludwig der Deutsche deutsch? - DIETER GEUENICH

Latin and Three Vernaculars in East Central Europe from the Point of View of the History of Social Communication - ANNA ADAMSKA