Middle English

Inflectional Levelling

OE ME
hȳran hēren
wē hȳr wē hēren
þæt wē hȳren þat wē hēren
þā dagas þē daies
þāra daga of þē daies
on þǣm dagum in þē daies

Nouns

m OE sg ME sg OE pl ME pl
Nom. stān stōn(e) stānas stōnes
Acc. stān stōn(e) stānas stōnes
Gen. stānes stōnes stāna stōnes
Dat. stāne stōn(e) stānum stōnes
n OE sg ME sg OE pl ME pl
Nom. word word(e) word wordes
Acc. word word(e) word wordes
Gen. wordes wordes worda wordes
Dat. worde word(e) wordum wordes

Strong Verbs

Class I: wrīten “write”
present indicative present subjunctive
1sg ich wrīte 1pl wē wrīten 1sg ich wrīte 1pl wē wrīten
2sg þū wrītest 2pl ȝē wrīten 2sg þū wrīte 2pl ȝē wrīten
3sg hē wrīteþ 3pl þei wrīten 3sg hē wrīte 3pl þei wrīten
preterite indicative preterite subjunctive
1sg ich wrōt(e) 1pl wē wrōten 1sg ich wrōte 1pl wē wrōten
2sg þū wrōt(e) 2pl ȝē wrōten 2sg þū wrōte 2pl ȝē wrōten
3sg hē wrōt(e) 3pl þei wrōten 3sg hē wrōte 3pl þei wrōten
past participle writen imperative sg wrīt pl wrīten

Gender

grammatical > natural

 

OE
man is of spede þære modor on worulde acænned
OE
Ða wearð þære halgan hyht geniwad ond þæs mægdnes mod miclum geblissad
ME
Haþerof þe maidens erand told

 

In to boure he was ladde,
Þe maiden for to se;
He fond hir liggeand on hir bedde

Word Order

Se þēow sēceð þone cyning
Se þēow þone cyning sēceð
Sēceð se þēow þone cyning
Þone cyning sēceð se þēow
? Sēceð þone cyning se þēow
Þē þeu sēcþ þē cyng
Þenne sēcþ þē þeu þē cyng
Þat þē þeu þē cyng sēcþ
Þē þeu þē cyng sēcþ
Þē cyng sēcþ þē þeu

Orthography

Orthography

Phonology

All OE diphthongs having thus been monophthongized, new diphthongs emerged through breaking and vocalization:

Phonology

Vowel length comes to anticipate the coda:

Image source CC-BY-SA Kristian Bjornard