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Another possible revised spelling, with example text from "the Owl and the Nightingale"Edit

  • With knowledge of Middle and Old English phonetics, reforming Modern English spelling in a Germanic way is easy. An indent means that I am not sure about that bit.
  • Qu = kw (Old English spelling, put together with my spelling of the hard C sound below)
  • Short A =a
  • Long A = ea (Before the Great Vowel Shift, it was pronounced like the Canadian exclamation "Eh?"
    • Ay/Ai = æȝ (I think the Long A and Ay should still be distinguished.)
    • Ey = eȝ (Same as above.)
  • Aw/au = oa (Pronounced this way before the Great Vowel Shift)
  • Short E = ee (Was pronounced just like the E in "met", but a bit longer)
  • Long E= ie (Was pronounced this way right before the Great Vowel Shift)
  • Short I = i
  • Long I = iȝ/ij (Modern pronunciation of igh and inspiration from Dutch ij)
  • Short U = e (Pronunciation of short E in Middle English, in many places)
  • "Ue" = ew (Inspired from Dutch digraph "uw", also a near-phonetic spelling because a single u is the oo in book in this spelling system.)
  • Long U = ȝew/jew (Written and pronounced this way, to this day in some cases.)
  • Oo sound = u (As in "book", prononced this way just before the Great Vowel Shift)
  • Ou sound = aw (Was pronounced this way before the Great Vowel Shift, still this way in German and Dutch, written "agu" in Old English)
  • Short O = o (As in "not", not present in most North American dialects.)
  • Long O = oo (As in "moat", pronounced this way on the dawn of the Great Vowel Shift.)
  • Aa sound = æ (As in North American "cat", written this way for a great while before French Influence.)
  • Y = ȝ / j (Ȝ was used as a Y sometimes in Middle English, J is the modern Y sound in other Germanic languages)
  • Oy/oi = oȝ / oj (Both the "oi" and "oy" spelling come from French)
  • Ch = c
  • Ck/K = k
  • Dge/J = cȝ/cg (Written this way in Old English)
  • Sh = sc (As written in Old English)
  • Voiced Th = ð (inspiration from Icelandic)
  • Unvoiced Th = þ (inspiration from Icelandic)
  • S = ß (German letter from ſs, ſs was a feature in English until late 18th century. Capital form ẞ also to be used. Used exactly like a voiceless S, no rules like in German.)
  • W = ƿ (Common way of writing it for a while, from runic ᚹ.)
  • V = ꝩ (A Norse letter making the V sound, it comes from ƿ.)
  • Z = s
  • Unvoiced S = ſ / ẞß (ẞß with capitalization, ſ at beginning or end. Mid-word: ẞß beside vowels, ſ beside consonents.)
  • Remaining French-influenced spellings: None.

EXAMPLE WITH Ƿ, Ȝ, and Ŋ: Iȝ ƿas in a deal in ßpriŋtiȝm; in a greatlie hidden nuk. Iȝ herd æn awl ænd a niȝtiŋgeal holdiŋ a great mewtiŋ. Ðeer reak was rieþed, teended ænd hƿolharted, ßemtiȝms ßƿæȝ, ßemtiȝms lawd; ænd iec uꝩ ðeem ßƿeelled ƿiþ ƿræþ ageanßt ðe eðer ænd leet awt all her niȝð, ænd ßead ðe fawl ƿorßt scie kud þiŋk uꝩ ðe eðer's kiȝnd, ænd neamlie ðeȝ reaked ageanßt iec eðer's ßoŋ.

EXAMPLE WITHOUT Ƿ, Ȝ, and Ŋ: Ij was in a deal in ßpringtijm; in a greatlie hidden nuk. Ij herd æn awl ænd a nijtingeal holding a great mewting. Ðeer reak was rieþed, teended ænd hwolharted, ßemtijms ßwæȝ, ßemtijms lawd; ænd iec uꝩ ðeem ßweelled wiþ wræþ ageanßt ðe eðer ænd leet awt all her nijð, ænd ßead ðe faul worßt scie kud þink uꝩ ðe eðer's kijnd, ænd neamlie ðeȝ reaked ageanßt iec eðer's ßong.

EXAMPLE WITH Þ, Ð, Æ, Ȝ: Iȝ was in a deal in ßpringtiȝm; in a greatlie hidden nuk. Iȝ herd æn awl ænd a niȝtingeal holding a great mewting. Ðeer reak was rieþed, teended ænd hwolharted, ßemtiȝms ßwæȝ, ßemtiȝms lawd; ænd iec uꝩ ðeem ßweelled wiþ wræþ ageanßt ðe eðer ænd leet awt all her niȝð, ænd ßead ðe fawl worßt scie kud þink uꝩ ðe eðer's kiȝnd, ænd neamlie ðeȝ reaked ageanßt iec eðer's ßong. Stillstandlake (talk) 18:21, May 25, 2015 (UTC)

One possible revised spelling: Example text from "the Owl and the Nightingale"Edit

One possible respelling of English to remove some French influence:

retain use of k in front of /i/ in words like “king”.

qu > cw

long i > iy (miys, to liye)

ou/ow > uw (a muws)

long u, ue > ew (trew, the trewth, a trews, trewly)

2nd person pronoun "you" > "ew" (the more historically correct spelling)

lengthened i and u are spelled i and u (the mind, a child, the grund)

soft c > s (muws, sins, (noun is sinnes), ons/oans/wuns, twiys, thriys)

ai > ay (mayden, mayn, maynly)

ol > oul and al > aul (this was a historical process in Middle English that didn't get reflected in the spelling)

igh > iyh and ough > ouh (simplifies spelling)

plural noun and 3s verb marker > es in all cases (he liyes) (This helps avoid confusion between the sound in "ice" and the sound in "buys")

infinitive, 1s present, and 2nd person present of verb suffixed with -e in most cases (to liye, to lette, to helpe; I liye, ew liye) (This is historically based, and makes the verbs look more uniform)

Remaining French-influenced spellings: letter "v", “ch” digraph, "dge" trigraph, and the letter “y” 

The Uwl and the Niyhtingale

Ih was in a dale in springtiym; in a greatly hidden nook, ih heard an uwl and a niyhtingale houlding a great mooting. Their rake was reethed, tended and houlharted, sumtiymes swey, sumtiymes luwd; and each of them swelled with wrath agaynst the other and let uwt all her nithe, and sayed the full worst she coud think of the otheres kind, and namely they raked agaynst each otheres song. The niyhtingale began the rake in a garthnook, and cleft on a wlitty bouh---thear was mickel blossom umb it---in an unthuringly thick hedge, with reeds and green sedge growing throuh it. Forof the bouh, she was all the eadier, and sang in many other ways; the swin lithed as if it came from a harp or a rowel rather than from a living throat. Nearbiy thear stood an ould stump whear the uwl sang her longlogs and which was all overgrown with ivy; this was whear the uwl lived. The niyhtingale looked at her, and yemed her and ashuned her, and everything abuwt the uwl seemed uncweming to her, sins she is houhed as ugly and dirty. 'Ew slithe thing!', she sayed, 'fliy away! The siyht of ew makes me sick. Ih often have to stop singing forof ewer ugly nebb. Miy hart fails me, and so does miy speech, when ew thrust ewerself on me. Ih'd rather spitte than singe abuwt ewer wretched huwling.' The uwl waited until it was evening; she couldn't houlde back any longer, for she was so wrath that she coud hardly breathe, and endily she spoke: 'Huw does miy song seme to ew nuw? Do ew thinke that ih can't singe oanly for ih can't twittere? Ew often heashe me and saye things to upsette and fase me. If ih held ew in miy grippes---if only ih coud!--and ew were off ewer bouh, ew'd singe a full other lede!' The niyhtingale answered, 'As long as ih kepe uwt of the open, and ward miyself agaynst being unheled, I'm not bothered biy ewer threates; as long as ih stay put in miy hedge, ih don't care at all what ew saye. Ih knowe that ew're ruthless toward those who can't ward themselves from ew, and that whear ew can ew tharle smal birdes reethly and harshly. That is whiy all kindes of birdes hate ew, and they all drive ew away, and screeche and screame umb ew, and mob ew at niyh fourthers; and for the same rethe even the titmuws would gladly rippe ew to bittes. Ew're ugly to looke at, and atel in all kindes of wayes; ewer body is squat, ewer neck is scrawny, ewer head is bigger than the laf of ew put together; ewer eyes are black as coul, and as big as if they were mealed with woad. Ew glare as if ew wante to bite to death everything that ew can strike with ewer clawes. Ewr beak is hard and sharp, and bowed like a bent hook. Ew often make an edwerving clacking din with it, and that's oan of ewer songs. But ew're making threates agaynst miy were, and would like to crushe me with ewer hindes; a frog would fitte ew better, squatting under a mill-wheel; snayles, miys, and other scum would bee riyhter and more fitted for ew. Ew rooste biy day and fliye biy niyht; ew shewe that ew're an evil wiyht. Ew are loathsum and unclean---I'm taulking abuwt ewer nest, and also abuwt ewer dirty chickes; ew're bringing them up with trewly filthy wontes. Ew knowe swith well what they dooe in their nest: they fuwle it up to the chin; they sitte thear as if they're blind. There's a saying abuwt that: 'Shame on that wiyht which fuwles its own nest'! The other year a falk was breeding; she didn't warde her nest well. Ew crepte in thear oan day, and layed ewer filthy egg in it. When the tiym came that she hatched the egges and the chickes uwtcame, she brouht her chickes food, watched over the nest and saw them ete; she saw that on oan side her nest was fuwled on the uwter edge. The falck was wrath with her chickes, and screamed luwdly, and chided sternly: 'Tell me, who's done this? It was never ewer lund to dooe this kind of thing. This is a wlatsum thing to have happened to ew. Tell me, if ew knowe who did it!' Then they all sayed, 'It was indeed uwer brother, the oan over thear with the big head--- it's a shame nobody's cut it off! Throw him uwt as a spurn, so that he brekes his neck!' The Falk believed her chickes, and fanged that dirty chick biy the middel, and threw it off that wild bouh, whear magpies and crowes tore it to bittes. Thear's a tale tould abuwt this: this is what happenes to the nithing who's cumme from an unnamecuwth inherd and blendes with aringly foulk; he's alwayes letting his ors shewe, that he's cumme from a rotten egg even if he's wended up in an aringly nest; even if an appel roulls away from the tree whear it was growing with the others, althouh it's sum span from it it still edleames swotelly whear it's cumme from.' The niyhtingale answered with these wordes, and after that long speech she sang as luwdly and as shrilly as if a clinging harp were being played. EighLawIce (talk) 08:31, April 15, 2015 (UTC)

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