The Early Modern English Period

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5. The Great Vowel Shift [1]

- mismatch between spelling and pronunciation: begun in ME, spelling fixed by early XVI century, but the sound kept changing). 

- change of quality of all long vowels (stressed syllables) - standardization of the language: synthetic -> analytic - most significant of all phonological developments in English - change in pronunciaion of verb tense[2]


  1. GRAMLEY STEPHAN. The history of English: an introduction. New York: Routledge, 2012, xxv, 123-154 pp.