Germanic Languages | History of the German Language
G532 | 28948 | T. Hall


This course provides an overview of the history of the German language
from its Indo-European origins to the present day. Emphasis will be
placed on the most significant phonological and morphological
developments. The course will begin with a brief introduction to
linguistics, including general principles of historical linguistics.
This introduction will be followed by six units of approximately two
weeks each devoted to the following historical periods:

a. Proto-Indo-European
b. Proto-Germanic and West Germanic
c. Old High German
d. Middle High German
e. Early New High German
f. Modern German (including regional dialects)

In each of these units, we will summarize the major structural aspects
of the language, examine sample texts, and consider one or two
selected scholarly issues. No background in linguistics is assumed.
The course will be appropriate for beginners and advanced students
alike. German is not a prerequisite for this course, although a
reading knowledge of German will be presupposed. Course material will
be in the form of instructor-generated handouts. It is possible to
repeat G532 for credit.

The course grade will be based on problem sets a final examination and
class participation.