Some English words of interest, derived from the French, based on Aiol and La Chanson de Roland

by Frances Elizabeth Bedford

Institution: University of Missouri – Columbia
Year: 1904
Record ID: 1531070
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/10355/15471


The greater number of English words derived from French probably came into the language either in the period of intercourse between the two countries preceding the Norman conquest, or subsequent to the conquest and as a direct result of it. A conquering tribe or nation generally succeeds in imposing its own language on the conquered people; and, if it does not succeed in that, it leaves appreciable traces of its own language. The insular position of England which separated the Norman conquerors from their past surroundings, to a certain extent producing an isolation, which became complete after the loss of Normandy to England at a late period is partially responsible for the failure of Norman - French to secure its permanence as such. Add to this the feelings of resentment and prejudice on the part of the conquered, and the characteristic pertinacity of the Anglo - Saxon, and we have cause for wonder that the French element in English is as large as it is. The presence of the French element is to be accounted for in many ways; some reasons for its use will by enumerated.