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‘Ye whom the charms of grammar please’

Studies in English Language History in Honour of Leiv Egil Breivik


Edited By Kari Haugland, Kevin McCafferty and Kristian A. Rusten

This collection of articles by colleagues and students of Leiv Egil Breivik presents studies within both core and peripheral areas of English historical linguistics. Core topics covered include the development of existential there and related phenomena, word order, the evolution of adverbials, null subjects from Old to Early Modern English, pragmatics and information structure and aspects of discourse. Contributors also address the emergence of new syntactic constructions in the past and present, language contact and aspects of style in Early Modern English letters and medical texts. The ideological discourses of children’s dictionaries and medieval letters of defence are also explored.
The essays are all empirical studies, based on a wide range of corpora (both historical and contemporary) and applying theoretical approaches informed by Systemic-Functional Grammar, grammaticalization theory, dependency grammar, historical linguistics, sociolinguistics and corpus linguistic methods. Issues of methodology, statistics and corpus construction and annotation are also addressed in several contributions.
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Leiv Egil Breivik: A bibliography



Breivik, Leiv Egil. 1990. Existential there: A synchronic and diachronic study (Studia Anglistica Norvegica 2), 2nd edn. (1st edn. 1983). Oslo: Novus Press.


Breivik, Leiv Egil. 1975a. The use and non-use of ‘existential there’ in present-day English. Forum Linguisticum 7, 57–103.

Breivik, Leiv Egil. 1977. A note on the genesis of existential there. English Studies 58(4), 334–48.

Breivik, Leiv Egil. 1981. On the interpretation of existential there. Language 57, 1–25.

Breivik, Leiv Egil. 1984. On the typological distinction between subject-prominence and topic-prominence. Folia Linguistica Historica 5(1), 3–23.

Breivik, Leiv Egil. 1985. Some remarks on Norwegian dummy subjects. In Tove Bull & Anton Fjeldstad (eds), Heidersskrift til Kåre Elstad, 154–71. Institutt for språk og litteratur, University of Tromsø.

Breivik, Leiv Egil. 1989. On the causes of syntactic change in English. In Leiv Egil Breivik & Ernst Håkon Jahr (eds), Language change: Contributions to the study of its causes, 29–70. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.

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