A tale of two dialect regions: Sranan's 17th-century English input

André Sherriah  


This book traces the precise origin of the early English lexical and lexico-phonetic influences in Sranan, an English-based creole spoken in Suriname. Sranan contains "fossilised" linguistic remnants of an early English colonial period. The book discusses whether Sranan’s English influence(s) originated from a single dialect from the general London area, as proposed by Norval Smith in 1987, or whether we are dealing with a composite of dialectal features from all over England. The book introduces a novel replicable methodology for linguistic reconstructions, which combines statistics (in the form of binomial probability), English dialect geography (via use of Orton’s et. al., 19621971, Survey of English Dialects, which focuses on traditional regional English dialects across England and Wales), and 17th-century English migration history (compiled from The Complete Book of Emigrants: 1607–1660, The Bristol Registers of Servants Sent to Foreign Plantations, 1654–1686, Virtual Jamestown, Virginia Center for Digital History, and Colonial State Papers secured from the British History Online databases, among other relevant historical sources).


Author Biography

André Sherriah, University of the West Indies

André Sherriah (PhD) works as a Datacentre Technician at IBM Cloud, and as a Course Coordinator/Instructor in the online Master of Arts in the English Language, offered by The University of the West Indies (UWI). He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Doctorate from UWI, and an M.A. in Linguistics and Web Technology from Phillipps-Universität Marburg.  André’s interests include the development of web-based, learning applications for linguistics, while his research focus is on English dialectology. André is an advocate for cross-disciplinary research.


June 18, 2018
LaTeX source on GitHub
Cite as
Sherriah, André. 2018. A tale of two dialect regions: Sranan's 17th-century English input. (Studies in Caribbean Languages 3). Berlin: Language Science Press.


Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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ISBN-13 (15)


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Details about the available publication format: Hardcover


ISBN-13 (15)