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Arrangment and Contractions

(This is Henry Sweet's original text. This section starts at page xii in the original.)

The order is alphabetic, æ following ad, and þ (which also stands for ð) following t. But ge- is disregarded (gebed under b), and is generally omitted before verbs, except where accompanied by distinctions of meanings, as in gegān.

Compounds and derivatives generally come immediately after the simple word, whose repetition is denoted by ~, as in bī-spell, ~boc = bispellboc. If only part of the word is repeated, that part is marked off by an upright stroke, as in bann|an, ~end. = bannend. So also in the first quotation given under mǣn|an, the ~e stands for mǣne; but if nothing is added to the ~ when used in this way, it necessarily implies repetition of the complete head-word, whether the head-word contains a | or not : thus in all the quotations given under gemǣn|e the ~ stands for gemǣne.

* denotes hypothetical or non-existent forms (p. xi, Spellings).

† signifies that the word or idiom or meaning occurs only in poetry, (†) that it is mainly poetical, but occurs also in prose. When all the compounds of a word marked † occur only in poetry, the † is omitted after them; otherwise the † is repeated after them when necessary, or the exceptions are marked Pr. = 'prose.' † after an isolated vowel means that the shortness or length of the vowel is proved by the metre; thus i† under wiga means that the metre shows that the i is short, while ō† in prowian means that although the o does not seem to be accented—in which case ó would have been added—the metre shows it to be long—at least in some dialects.

(?) denotes doubtful words, forms, or meanings (p. vii, Doubtful Matter).

(!) denotes words formed in slavish imitation of Latin (p. viii, Unnatural Words).

The ( ) in (m.) means that the gender of the noun is doubtful, but probably masculine; (f.) means that it is probably feminine, and so on. When the second of two final repeated consonants is put in ( ), it implies that the uninflected word ends in a single consonant, which is doubled before an inflectional vowel ; thus fæsten(n) means nominative fæsten, dative fæstenne, &c.

For the meaning of the thin e in gambe, &c., see p. vii, Doubtful Matter.

For the diacritics in æ̂, iė, ę, see p. x, Spellings.

In words divided by a hyphen, the stress is generally on the first syllable, if no stress-mark is used; if the stress is on any other than the first syllable, it is marked by · before the letter with which the stress begins, as in be·cuman, which has the same stress as become, while in such a word as bī-spell the stress is on the first syllable. In such compounds as ongēan-cyme the first element is assumed to have the stress in the same place as in on·gēan, that is, on the second syllable.

The parts of speech are not generally marked in the case of adjectives, numerals, pronouns, and weak verbs, strong verbs being indicated by the number of their class. Anomalous verbs are marked vb., especially the preterite-present verbs, such as cann, which are given under this form, not under their infinitives.

A. Anglian.

a. accusative, accusative singular.

abs. absolute.

abst. abstract.

act. active.

aj. adjective.

an. analogy.

av. adverb.

Bd. Bede's History.

cj. conjunction.

coll. collective.

comp. composition.

correl. correlative.

cp. compare.

cpv. comparative.

Ct. Charter.

d. dative.

def. definite.

dem. demonstrative.

dir. direct.

e. E. early.

esp. especially.

f. feminine (noun).

fem. feminine.

fig. figurative(ly).

Fr. French.

g. genitive.

gen. generally.

ger. gerund.

Gk. Greek.

Gl. glossary

i. instrumental.

impers. impersonal.

impv. imperative.

indc. indicative — w. indc. with the conj. þǣt followed by vb. in indc.

indecl. indeclinable.

indef. indefinite.

indir. indirect.

inf. infinitive.

infl. influence.

intens. intensitive.

interj. interjection.

interr. interrogative.

intr. intransitive.

K. Kentish.

l, L. late.

lit. literally.

LL. Laws.

Lt. Latin.

M. Mercian.

m. masculine (noun).

masc. masculine.

met. metaphorical(ly).

N. Northumbrian.

n. neuter (noun).

neut. neuter.

no. noun.

nom. nominative.

nW. non-West-Saxon.

occ. occasional(ly).

of said of (p. ix, Meanings).

pass. passive.

pers. person(al).

pl. plural, nominative and accusative plural, noun in plural.

pleon. pleonastic(ally).

poss. possessive.

Pr. Prose.

pro. pronoun.

prp. preposition.

prs. present.

prt. preterite.

Ps. Psalms (metrical).

ptc. participle, preterite participle.

R. Rhyming Poem.

rel. relative.

rfl. reflexive in form, that is, taking a rfl. pronoun.

sbj. subjunctive — w. sbj. with the conj. þæt followed by vb. in sbj.

Scand. Scandinavian (Scand. words are given in their Icelandic forms).

sg. singular.

spl. superlative.

st. strong.

tr. transitive.

v. very.

vb. verb (generally implying anomalous vb.).

W. West-Saxon.

w. with — waa. with double accusative, wdg. with dative of person and genitive of thing, and so on.

wk. weak.

Note that these contractions are often combined : mf. noun which is both m. and f., eW. early West-Saxon, ld. dative in the later language, vL. very late (p. viii, Brevity).