martes, 1 de marzo de 2011

England before the Romans

            In the beginning of the Christian era, Celts were found in a very large area of Europe: Spain, France, Germany, England, etc. Later on, there was a retreat of Celtics towns before the advance of Latin language. Celtic tongues are found today only in remote parts.
Celts are the first people in England about whose language we have certain knowledge. As it is usually assumed, the coming of Celts coincides with the introduction of bronze in England.
Celtic was the first tongue to be spoken in England, but another language came later, Latin, when the isle became part of the Roman Empire, during 300 years. In the 5th English was spoken by Anglos, Saxons and Jutes.

Consequences of the presence of Celts in England.

The number of Celtic words in Modern English is not very large. The British Celts were subjugated by Germanic tribes. Germanic tribes occupied the SE, one part called Kent (Celtic name); the capital of Kent was Kent-warabyrig (Canterbury=habitants del lugar de Kent). Germanic tribes respected most of the Celtic names. These names are more frequent in the west then in the east. It is in part because the Celts were pushed and refuged in Wales (West) and in the North. Another reason was that Germanic tribes came form the continent, flat lands. They didn’t have accurate, appropriate words for the mountainous geography, and let the Celtic words remained.
The linguistic exchanges were unusual. None of the 2 sides wanted to learn the language of the other one. E.G bratt (cloak), torr (peak), cumb (valley), Holcombe, Duncombe and many other place names such as Carlisle, London, Devon, Canterbury etc. In Scotland loch (lake), whisky, Tory, Whig. Lots of geographical names are Celtic.

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