Re: Is English a creole? (was: Indo-European Studies)

Alwyn Thomas (
8 Aug 1995 11:36:10 GMT (Glynis Baguley) wrote:
>. Were all the lowly Normans promptly ennobled, and the English
>aristocrats forced to perform menial tasks for the conquerors? It's
>very difficult to imagine that there was this neat divide between posh
>ruling Normans and vulgar down-trodden English.

I don't quite see why you have so much difficulty with this idea. The
Norman duke comes from France with his retinue, which contains
aristocrats as well as humbler folk like cooks and grooms and other
servants. Because of their association with the ruling class, even the
most menial of these feel superior to the indigenous English and do not
deign to learn their language - just as white people are used to behaving
towards Aboriginals in Australia.

As far as I understand it the English athelings were replaced wholesale
by Norman noblemen. If you wanted to get on in society you had to learn
French and imitate your the ruling class.