In this episode, we turn our attention to the south of England and examine some of the unique features of the Middle English dialects spoken there after the Norman Conquest. We also take a look at a poem composed in the Southern dialect called “The Fox and the Wolf.” Finally, we explore how developments in this region informed some of the modern differences between northern and southern speech in Britain.
At the dawn of the 14th century, Edward I was forced to deal with a popular uprising in Scotland. At the same time, a poet in northern England composed the oldest surviving poem in the Northern dialect of Middle English called the Cursor Mundi. In this episode, we turn our attention to northern England and Scotland, and we examine the unique features of this northernmost dialect of Middle English.