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A New History of IrelandEarly Modern Ireland 1534-1691$
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T. W. Moody, F. X. Martin, and F. J. Byrne

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199562527

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199562527.001.0001

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The English Language in Early Modern Ireland

The English Language in Early Modern Ireland

(p.546) Chapter XXI The English Language in Early Modern Ireland
A New History of Ireland

Alan Bliss

Oxford University Press

The reformation had brought about a unity of purpose between the Irish and the Old English, and the Irish language became a symbol of the Catholic religion; the English settlers, who for a long time had been bilingual, now began consciously to reject the English language in favour of Irish. This chapter describes the forms for English introduced into Ireland. From the 16th century in northern and eastern Ulster, Lowland Scots; in the rest of the country, the English of England related in some way to the dialects of the north of England. By the middle of the 17th century English had been spread rather widely through all the provinces of Ireland except Connacht, and from then on it was not affected by changes occurring in England, but developed in its own way. The ultimate fate of the language of the towns is not known; it does not survive in any recognisable form, but it is possible that some varieties of present-day urban Anglo-Irish may show its influence.

Keywords:   reformation, Irish language, English, dialects, language

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