Variation, Contact and Change
Spatio-temporal systems in A Treatise on the Astrolabe: Minako Nakayasu
Minako NakayasuHamamatsu University School of Medicine
Spatio-temporal systems in A Treatise on the Astrolabe1
In our world, where numerous situations occur in a variety of modes, it is the speaker of language who takes responsibility in choosing which situation to put into language and where on the time axis to place it. In A Treatise on the Astrolabe, for example, Geoffrey Chaucer explains an astrolabe to his 10-year-old son employing a variety of expressions. Examine the following context, where he starts his explanation:
(1) Now wol I preie mekely every discret persone that redith or herith this litel tretys to have my rude enditying for excusid, and my superfluite of wordes, for two causes. The firste cause is for that curious enditying and hard sentence is ful hevy at onys for such a child to lerne. And the secunde cause is this, that sothly me semith better to writen unto a child twyes a god sentence, than he forgete it onys (Ast, 0.41–9).2
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