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The American Language Chapter Summary & Analysis - Chapter 1.6 Summary

This Study Guide consists of approximately 123 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The American Language.
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Chapter 1.6 Summary

Mencken reiterates that pedagogues waste time classifying American. He claims White and Lounsbury have exhausted it in a most "preposterous" way, and says that though others continue to categorize Americanisms, there are no more to categorize. He cites the work of Pickering, which outlines the origins of Americanisms as 1) having formed new words; 2) having affixed new meaning to old words; and 3) having retained some words from the past, making them common. The author then shows how Bartlett added to Pickering's categories in 1859, adding 1) archaisms; 2) old words with new "senses"; 3) words retaining original meaning in the U.S. but not in England; 4) American adoption of English "provincialisms"; 5) newly coined words; 6) borrowed words; 7) Indian words; 8) "Negroisms"; and 9) peculiarities of pronunciation.

The writer cites University of Amherst's rhetoric professor William C. Fowler, who classifies borrowed terms by a) country of origin; b...

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This section contains 376 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The American Language Study Guide
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The American Language from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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