More Old English pronunciaton question

Moderator: Moderators

nest
Posts: 97
Joined: Fri May 06, 2011 10:12 pm

More Old English pronunciaton question

Postby nest » Mon Feb 06, 2017 4:10 pm

I saw this on the BBC website last week and wondered how they would be pronounced and If the second word is the origin of modern English "slumber"

Kind regards

nest


Uhtceare

An Old English word meaning to lie awake anxiously before dawn. Literally translated from the Old English it means the 'dawn-care'. It's similar to insomnia'(though more time-specific) in that it is a name (or noun) given to the state of being sleepless.


Sloom

To gently sleep or lightly slumber, from the Middle English slumen and the Old English slūmian.



User avatar
Brother Ranulf
Post Centurion
Posts: 936
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 7:46 pm
Location: Canterbury

Re: More Old English pronunciaton question

Postby Brother Ranulf » Mon Feb 06, 2017 7:40 pm

Middle English often provides clues to the earlier pronunciation of words - in this case "dawn" is ūghten in ME, which is said ooKHten (KH is a guttural in the throat). So the Old English uht is ooKHt. Ceare has that same ea diphthong mentioned in another thread, starting with e as in "bed" and gliding to the back of the throat, resulting in something like the vowel in "bared". The final e is also pronounced, but it has a very short value - so the whole word is ooKHt-cear-eh.

OE often has versions of the same verb expressing slightly different meanings - our word slumber comes from the verb slumerian rather than slumian but they can both mean to sleep lightly. Middle English has many examples of words with -mm- which changed to -mb-, probably as a result of lazy speech; these include the verb slǒmberen, to doze or sleep, from OE sluma, a light sleep. This is exactly how we get "number" while German retains "nummer" - ME nǒmbre from the earlier form nummer.


Brother Ranulf

"Patres nostri et nos hanc insulam in brevi edomuimus in brevi nostris subdidimus legibus, nostris obsequiis mancipavimus" - Walter Espec 1138

nest
Posts: 97
Joined: Fri May 06, 2011 10:12 pm

Re: More Old English pronunciaton question

Postby nest » Tue Feb 07, 2017 10:36 am

Many thanks Brother Ranulf.





Return to “410-1100”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest