Sean B. Palmer sean at
Wed Jan 11 18:30:47 CET 2012

Michael Everson wrote:

> So far I'm not convinced that there is a coherent entity to be tagged.

This could also be approached from the grounds of my motivation to
submit the registration form in the first place. Say that I was
quoting Poul Anderson's Uncleftish Beholding, probably the most famous
example not on your list, in HTML to comment on Anglish:

<blockquote lang="en">
<p>Outside it is a backwardladen mote called a <em>bernstonebit</em>.
The firstbit has a heaviness about 1840-fold that of the bernstonebit.
Early worldken folk thought bernstonebits swing around the kernel like
the earth around the sun, but now we understand they are more like
waves or clouds.

If I were quoting John Bishop's comment on the One Show recently that
he and Bruno Tonioli probably sound like Clangers to most of their TV
audience, then I'd probably want to quote him dialectally and use
lang="en-scouse". If I were to blooch about back-dated chucks who
don't watch the One Show, I'd use lang="en-boont". So I thought I
should be using a code to indicate the Anglishness of the text.

So, how can we test for coherence and established principles? Well, do
we know that the segment above is Anglish? Yes. Is there doubt?
Wherein does the doubt subsist, if there is any; what are its sundry
qualities and lineaments? How were you able to concoct the list of
sites that have variants of Anglish to submit them to me as examples
of possible incoherence? Why did you choose those ones in particular,
if you did not think they were Anglish? Why is the concept regarded as
notable enough for inclusion on Wikipedia, when Kalusa wasn't?

Even a scouse is going to be speaking somewhere in the radial category
of Scouseness, there are going to be more prototypical speakers and
less so. Some would say perhaps that you're not speaking scouse if you
don't support Everton. Maybe if the wind were carrying on a good day
more people would be Cockneys, the sounds of the bells of St.
Mary-le-Bow being audible from farther away. I think the Queen is
gaining some Estuary vowels, but she still speaks the Queen's English
by definition.

I don't know what makes a language a language, where the boundaries
are. Are the Peterborough Chronicle continuations Old English, or are
they Anglo-Saxon-Norman-French creole? What about the Ormulum, or was
Laȝamon still speaking Old English when he deliberately archaicised
his Brut? How far was the Ancrene Wisse over the dividing line between
Old English and Middle English? How much rapidly-indigenised-Norse
French do you need to speak to be speaking the English the author of
Piers Plowman spoke?

I'm just having a chat now, really. If The Kinks Are The Village Green
Preservation Society was sung in Anglish then perhaps I'd be more
motivated to push the submission through! I want to know what the
proper way of marking up Anglish text is, and I thought that the lack
of en-anglish might be a blunderous gap in the conceptual market.

Sean B. Palmer

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