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About the story
What’s with this “Wren” thing?
   The oldest extant version of the fable we are presenting here appeared in 1913 in the first volume of a two-volume anthology of Low Saxon folktales (Plattdeutsche Volksmärchen “Low German Folktales”) collected by Wilhelm Wisser (1843–1935). Read more ...

Cape Barren, Southeastern Australia

Cape Barren and Flinders Islands off Tasmania’s north coast
where Australian English came to be adopted by Aboriginal
and Polynesian muttonbird hunters

Language information: English is currently the most important language in the world. Its origin is highly complex. It began as a mixture of Anglish, Old Saxon, Old Jutish, Old Frisian and possibly other Old Germanic varieties imported from the Continental Lowlands, as well as numerous Medieval Latin loans. The resulting Old English (or Anglo-Saxon) language came to supplant most Celtic language varieties of Britain. Viking and Norman invasions resulted in layers of Scandinavian and Norman French influences. English morphology underwent radical simplification, and this caused the syntax to lose much of its earlier flexibility.
Dialectical diversity is considerable, the most densely occurring diversity being in the British Isles and Ireland, followed closely by the North American East Coast, especially New England and Canada’s Maritime Provinces. Having changed little since the fourteenth century, today’s English orthography is one of the most historical systems and takes much time and effort to master.

Australian English initially developed from various dialects imported by British and Irish convicts and early settlers, with influences from aboriginal languages. Since then, influences from dialects and languages of later immigrants have been influencing Australian English.

Cape Barren English is a Kriol (i.e. Australian creole) variety spoken until recently by the Aboriginal populations on Cape Barren Island and ALL languages and dialects are beautiful, precious gifts. So cherish yours and others! Share them with the world!Flinders Island in the Furneaux Group off Australia’s island state of Tasmania. There are currently less than six fluent speakers left on the islands. When the remaining Aborigines were rounded up and sent to Flinders Island, they met up with other Tasmanian and Australian Aboriginal, South Sea Islander and Maori women who had formed family groups with English sealers on the muttonbird-rich islands of the Bass Strait. Consequently Cape Barren English is a mixture of eighteenth-century maritime English and Palawa, with a small sprinkling of other indigenous languages, and with a lexicon highly referent to the muttonbird-harvesting industry.

Genealogy: Indo-European > Germanic > Western > Anglo-Scots > English

    Click to open the translation: [Click] Click here for different versions. >

Authors: Reinhard F. Hahn & Andrys Onsman

© 2011, Lowlands-L · ISSN 189-5582 · LCSN 96-4226 · All international rights reserved.
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