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Romani in BritainThe Afterlife of a Language$
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Yaron Matras

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780748639045

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748639045.001.0001

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The Historical Position of British Romani

The Historical Position of British Romani

(p.57) 3 The Historical Position of British Romani
Romani in Britain

Yaron Matras

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter describes the inflected form of Romani that was spoken in Britain and explores its position within the Romani dialectal landscape. The coverage of Romani in Britain begins in 1542. In this chapter word forms are adapted to the general transliteration conventions of Romani dialectology unless there is a particular reason to quote a published source directly. British Romani continues a set of nominative enclitic pronouns that accompany lexical predications in the third persons. The most outstanding feature of inflected English Romani that distinguishes it from subsequent development phases and the emergence of Angloromani is the retention of finite verb inflection. There is a clear picture of a tightly linked branch of British Romani, consisting of the closely affiliated Angloromani and Welsh Romani. The period of turbulence in the shape of the Romani predication suggests a period during which the language was undergoing a turnover of functions.

Keywords:   British Romani, Britain, dialectal landscape, Romani dialectology, Angloromani, finite verb inflection, Welsh Romani, language

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