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Title: The emergence of Scottish Standard English : the evidence of the correspondence of 2nd Earl Fife 1764-1789
Author: Cruickshank, Janet
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 2011
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This investigation into the origins of Scottish Standard English in the eighteenth century is conducted using the correspondence of James Duff, 2nd Earl Fife, to his factor William Rose over a 26 year period in the late eighteenth century, supported by biographical and historical linguistic data. The presence in Fife's writing of contemporaneously identified Scotticisms has been used as an indication of Fife's use of Scots language. A linguistic analysis of the Scotticisms found in Fife's writing showed no restriction in the use of any linguistic category. A quantitative investigation as to which extralinguistic factors of influence promoted the use of Scotticisms showed that the topic of Fife's communication was the greatest influence on his of Scotticisms but that purpose also played a part in determining his Scots language use. Fife's use of Scotticisms was also influenced by his social networks, with an increase in Scots lexicon in letters from Scotland and an increase in Scots syntax when there was no social pressure present to maintain Standard English. A qualitative analysis of Fife's use of Scotticisms showed that he employed Scots variants for pragmatic purposes. Referring to theories of second language acquisition and language contact, these results were interpreted to suggest that Fife maintained the Scots language of his childhood and acquired Standard English by education to become a bilingual adult, although from the relatively standardised nature of his writing. it appears that some vernacular shift had taken place throughout his lifetime. The evidence from Fife's correspondence suggests that any Scots language remaining in the otherwise generally Standard English in Scotland might be due to incomplete shift to Standard English, requirements of register, and pragmatically motivated selection of Scots. All these options require that the emerging speakers of Scottish Standard English had a degree of bilingualism in Scots and English.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Standard language ; English language ; Scots language