IMC 2017: Sessions

Session 243: 'Dame Ortography taught lettres and how men shuld wryte': Medieval Writers and Their Spelling

Monday 3 July 2017, 14.15-15.45

Organiser:Christine Wallis, School of English, University of Sheffield
Moderator/Chair:Nigel Bibby, School of History, University of Leeds
Paper 243-aScribal Scribbles: Visible and Invisible Notes in an Anglo-Saxon Manuscript
(Language: English)
Christine Wallis, School of English, University of Sheffield
Index terms: Education, Language and Literature - Old English, Literacy and Orality, Manuscripts and Palaeography
Paper 243-bHow Accurate is Orm's Spelling?
(Language: English)
Annina Seiler, Englisches Seminar, Universit├Ąt Z├╝rich
Index terms: Language and Literature - Old English, Language and Literature - Middle English, Literacy and Orality, Manuscripts and Palaeography
Paper 243-cNot My Type: A Computational Approach to Identifying Caxton's Compositors
(Language: English)
Rosie Shute, School of English, University of Sheffield
Index terms: Computing in Medieval Studies, Language and Literature - Middle English, Printing History
Abstract

With no standardised spelling, medieval English is particularly amenable to linguistic approaches seeking to uncover the relative influences of personal systems and external models on orthographical practice. Wallis contextualises spelling choices in an Anglo-Saxon manuscript’s newly-discovered dry-point notes, while Seiler compares the selection and consistency of Orm’s graphemic inventory with similar issues of sound representation faced by the earliest Old English writers. Shute’s mathematical and computational linguistic approaches uncover the influence of Caxton’s typesetters in shaping early printed texts. This panel furthers our understanding of the orthographical practices of a variety of little-studied medieval text shapers (e.g. readers, linguistically-aware writers, and compositors).