Old Engli.sh

The Portal to the Language of the Anglo-Saxons

About Old-Engli.sh

The website www.Old-Engli.sh is dedicated to the Anglo-Saxon language. It offers study tools, news on current linguistic research and resource development, a link directory, text editions, trivia articles and more.
About the Anglo-Saxon Language

Old English (OE) is the term used collectively for the earliest dialects of the English language, spoken by the Angles, Saxons and Jutes in England from c. 400-1150. The first OE records date from c. 700 and all in all more than 1,000,000 word tokens in over 400 manuscripts have come down to us. OE prose boasts a wide variety of genres, ranging from legal and religious texts over historical, medical or scientific writing to fiction. The surviving OE poems, such as Beowulf or the Battle of Maldon, are among the finest examples of early Germanic legend and heroic poetry.
About Me

I'm a lecturer in English language and Linguistics at the University of Manchester. I'm maintaining this webpage on the side as a hobby. You can find out more about me by clicking on the My Research tab in the top menu.


Welcome to Old-Engli.sh!


Man dēþ swā hē byþ þonne hē mōt swā hē wile.
'Man does what he is when he may do as he pleases.'
(Durham Proverb No. 14, 11th century)



The latest Old-Engli.sh News

January 2022
DOE Adopt-a-Word funding campaign
Logo of the DOE's Adopt-a-Word funding campaign with the Old English for "We thank you."
The Dictionary of Old English (DOE) 2020 progress report has been published. It showcases the DOE's achievments, which are all the more impressive given the challenges associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. Notable updates concern words starting with the letter L as well as new staff members and funding.


February 2021
Cartulary of Saint Albans image detail
Manuscript Brussels, Bibliothèque Royale, 7965-73, f. 165r - a seventeenth century transcript of Old English charters now included in the Dictionary of Old English Corpus
As a dead language, Old English has a finite number of text sources its native speakers wrote while they were alive. The only way to enlarge the Old English corpus is therefore to discover new manuscripts of previously unknown texts. Such discoveries are extremely rare and noteworthy events. Yet, the DOE’s Corpus of Old English has just accomplished such a feat – several new texts comprising thousands of words were added to their database in 2019.


Old English Trivia of the Day

Article for Sunday 3 July 2022
Cartoon inflected infinitive Old English
The infinitive after to had an inflectional ending in Old English.


Study Anglo-Saxon!

Old English Language
old-english dictionary anglo-saxon lexicon
An Old English dictionary that's easy to use and accurate
Old-Engli.sh offers its own dictionary page. This online Old to Modern English glossary is simple, comprehensive and ideally suited for the translation of original Old English texts.


Old English Documentaries

Produced in 1992
<i>Before Babel</i> documentary logo
Before Babel A BBC-Horizon documentary
A BBC documentary on language reconstruction, the discovery of the Indo-European language family (of which (Old) English is a member), the hypothesis of language superfamilies and the notion of a mother tongue of all human languages spoken today.


Today's Featured Link

Old English Projects
Survey of Anglo-Saxon Plant Names
The Survey of Anglo-Saxon Plant Names (ASPNS) is a research project at the Institute for the Historical Study of Language (IHSL), based in the Department of English Language, University of Glasgow, U.K. The aim of the Survey is to study the plant-names of Anglo-Saxon England, in whatever medium they survive (e.g. manuscripts, inscriptions etc.), and from whatever language they originate. ASPNS offers news, an annual progress report, a Latin Plant-Name Associations Database and an exhaustive bibliography.
http://www.arts.gla.ac.uk/STELLA/ihsl/projects/plants.htm/
Survey of Anglo-Saxon Plant Names


Find here a collection of free, downloadable Old English text editions and translations, including Apollonius of Tyre. Ælfric's Catholic Homilies, Biblical Translations, The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle and many other texts. Continue...