Southern English in writing
This chapter deals with written evidence of regional varieties of language representing the middle and southern parts of England. ‘Southern English’ is here taken in a very wide sense, basically equivalent to ‘non-Northern’ and thus constituting a companion piece to the previous chapter. For two reasons, the chapter focuses on data from the nineteenth century: the written evidence is richer and, above all, reliable and detailed contemporary linguistic data collections and descriptions are available, notably the <i>English Dialect Dictionary</i>. Extensive use has also been made of data from the <i>Survey of English Dialects</i>. With regard to linguistic levels, special attention is given to phonological representation. Finally, the significance of genre, motivation and awareness is discussed.