The North of England and Northern English

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Since at least the early Middle English period the conception of the North of England as a region, which is culturally and linguistically separate from the South of the country, has been widespread (Beal 1993: 125–129). Nonetheless, there is no simple consensus about the extent of the North of England, either in common perception or linguistic description (Billinge and Baker, eds, 2004; Musgrove 1990; Russell 2004; Wales 2000, 2001, 2006). Certain supraregional features (Hickey 2013) are typical of the entire region and serve as identity markers while others point to a more finely grained and nuanced view of the region. The present-day North is characterised not least by a division of English into rural and urban varieties with the latter sharing or resisting general developments in urban British English today.


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