Dra. María de la Cruz Expósito González, MA, M.Phil, Ph.D.




This course is designed as an introduction to the external and internal history of the English language up to 1100 (Old English period). The emphasis will be laid on helping the student get a first-hand knowledge of the language itself as it has been preserved in the documents and literary works which have come down to us.

An adequate command of both written and oral English will be required in order to follow and pass this course.


Evalutation Criteria.- Students will be graded according to the quality and regularity of their course work and the results of written tasks and tests. Appropriate use of language in exercises, assignments and exams will be required. Serious deficiencies in that respect will not grant a pass.

       [Failure to attend classes regularly (missing more than 30% of class time)  and/or  the inability to hand in written assignments at the required dates will result in special final written and oral exams for those willing to pass the course.] 


  1. Introduction. Problems to do with historical linguistics.
  2. The Classification of languages. The Indo-European family of Languages.
  3. The backgrounds of English.
  4. Scripts in the British Isles.
  5. Old English Phonology.
  6. Old English Grammar. Morphology: Nouns and verbs.
  7. Old English Grammar. Morphology: Adjectives, pronouns, adverbs…
  8. Old English Syntax. Old English Lexis and Semantics.
  9. Old English Dialects.
  10. English metrical constructions and its importance for the evolution of English rhythmical patterns.



BAUGH, Albert & Thomas CABLE. 2002 (5th ed.). A History of the English Language. Englewood, New Jersey: Prentice Hall

HOGG, Richard, (general editor). The Cambridge History of the English Language.

                    Vol. II:  1066-1476, edited by Norman BLAKE

                    Vol. III: 1476-1776, edited by Roger LASS

                    Vol. IV: 1776-1997, edited by Suzanne ROMAINE

                     Vol. l. V: English in Britain and overseas, ed. by Robert W. BURCHFIELD

EXPÓSITO GONZÁLEZ, Mari Cruz (2002). Aspectos de la Relativización en la Historia de la Lengua Inglesa. Tenerife: MCEG.

EXPÓSITO GONZÁLEZ, Mari Cruz (2005) Historical Approaches to the Evolution of English: from Indo-European to Old English and the transitional Periods. CD-ROM. MCEG.

EXPÓSITO GONZÁLEZ, Mari Cruz (1997). La estructura del sintagma nominal en el inglés de la cancillería, 1400-1450. Barcelona: Kadle Books.


Despacho B1-05.

Tfno. 922317650



Anglo-Saxon Brooch