Middle English
Definition - The written and spoken English used between 1100 CE and 1500 CE. It is the language of Chaucer and Wycliffe.



The Canterbury Tales Prologue in Middle English



Example -
The following is the Lord's Prayer in Middle English taken from Wycliffe's 1380 translation of the Bible:


"Oure fadir that art in heuenes, halewid be thi name;
thi kyndoom come to
be thi wille don in erthe as in heuene:
gyue to us this dai oure breed ouer othir substaunce;
and forgyue to us oure dettis,
as we forgyuen to oure gettouris;
and lede us not in to temptacioun, but delyuere us fro yuel."

Oxford English Dictionary -
The term's first English citation is from 1839:
"The form of our language during the twelfth and the first half of the thirteenth century is generally termed Semi-Saxon; from that period to the time of the Reformation it has received from modern philologists the name of Middle-English."
(T. Wright Lit. & Learning under Anglo-Saxons 107)



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