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English Department

History of the English Language 2: Focus on Middle English (6 ECTS)



Bachelor Major (120 ECTS)

Bachelor Minor (60 ECTS)

Course Type(s)

  • Lecture
  • Seminar
Module Group English Linguistics


one-semester module, offered each spring semester


  • written exam (60%)
  • written exercise (40%) 
  • graded                                                                 

Language of Instruction




Students are required to have passed an introductory module in linguistics at bachelor level and "History of the English Language 1: Focus on Old English". The level of English language skills required for this course should correspond to the level achieved on completion of the Language Skills and Culture introductory module.
Content This module introduces students to the history of English and to English historical linguistics. It is intended for Bachelor students in their second year and consists of two parts: a lecture and a seminar. The lecture provides an overview on the history of the English language from the Norman Conquest of 1066 to the present today. The seminar introduces the students to Middle English (the language spoken and written in England between AD 1150-1500). The module gives an insight into the early forms of English and provides guidance on how to read original texts in Middle English with the help of glossaries. It also introduces some basic principles of English historical linguistics and of the study of medieval English literature.
Learning outcomes Students have basic knowledge of English historical linguistics (periods of language history, linguistic phenomena and their diachronic developments). They are able to read and understand simple Middle English texts in the original using appropriate study tools.