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Anni Sairio, Samuli Kaislaniemi, Anna Merikallio and Terttu Nevalainen

Abstract

Research into orthography in the history of English is not a simple venture. The history of English spelling is primarily based on printed texts, which fail to capture the range of variation inherent in the language; many manuscript phenomena are simply not found in printed texts. Manuscript-based corpora would be the ideal research data, but as this is resource-intensive, linguists use editions that have been produced by non-linguists. Many editions claim to retain original spellings, but in practice text is always normalized at the graph level and possibly more so. This does not preclude using such a corpus for orthographical research, but there has been no systematic way to determine the philological reliability of an edited text. In this paper we present a typological methodology we are developing for the evaluation of orthographical quality of edition-based corpora, with the aim of making the best use of bad data in the context of editions and manuscript practices. As a case study, we apply this methodology to the Early Modern and Late Modern English sections of the Corpus of Early English Correspondence.

Open access

Sebastian Hoffmann, Merja Kytö, Terttu Nevalainen and Irma Taavitsainen

Open access

Terttu Nevalainen, Turo Vartiainen, Tanja Säily, Joonas Kesäniemi, Agata Dominowska and Emily Öhman

Abstract

We introduce the Language Change Database (LCD), which provides access to the results of previous corpus-based research dealing with change in the English language. The LCD will be published on an open-access linked data platform that will allow users to enter information about their own publications into the database and to conduct searches based on linguistic and extralinguistic parameters. Both metadata and numerical data from the original publications will be available for download, enabling systematic reviews, meta-analyses, replication studies and statistical modelling of language change. The LCD will be of interest to scholars, teachers and students of English.