History of the English Language

History of the English Language
Links (with comments) to resources for the history of English, including access to the archives of the History of the English Language (HEL) discussion list.

The English Language, ed. A. G. Rigg
"This book is the result of several years teaching the history of the English language, formerly in Oxford and more recently in Stanford. I have often found that students, having worked only from general histories, have lacked a firsthand acquaintance with the evidence on which the histories are based. My aim has been to provide texts that illustrate the general developments of English (particularly in the form of parallel versions of the same original), in the hope that students will be enabled to support their general observations with a full knowledge of the linguistic facts."

English and Its History
Pronunciation and grammar guides for Old and Middle English, plus recommended readings. Includes a comparison of the nativity passage from Luke in Old English, Middle English, and Present-Day English.

A comprehensive site for online literary texts in English: Medieval, Renaissance, and 17th-Century literature.

The Great Vowel Shift
A thorough treatment of the Great Vowel Shift, perhaps the most important series of sound-changes in English since its beginning. Animations and sound-files.

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