3. Regional Variation
Traditional study of Dialect
• Speakers distance themselves from one another over time
and over space.
• Dialects become new languages
• unintelligible to one another
E.g., Latin became French in Frances, Spanish in Spain,
Italian in Italy.
how language changes over time and how
languages relate to one another.
4. Traditional Model of Linguistic
• Family Tree
e.g., Latin has branched into French, Spanish, and
• Phonemic „split‟
e.g., English /f/ and /v/ are distinctive sounds
• the „comparative method‟ of reconstruction
e.g., English Knave and German Knabe come from
the same source
• „ Internal reconstruction „
e.g., mouse and mice have different vowel sounds
5. Dialect Atlases
“Try to show the geographical boundaries
of the distribution of a particular linguistic
feature by drawing a line on a map”
Such a line is called an isogloss
– On one side of the line people say one
thing, on the other they say a different
The geographical boundary or delineation of a certain
Ex: the pronunciation of a vowel, the meaning of a
word, or use of some syntactic feature
A line on a map enclosing an area within which a particular
linguistic feature is found
Various types of isogloss are distinguished: an isophone
is a feature of pronunciation, an isolex an item of
vocabulary, an isomorph a feature of wordformation, and
an isoseme a particular word meaning
7. The isoglosses show a considerable amount of crisscrossing caused a number of coincide. The coincide called
a bundle of isoglosses.
A bundle is often said to marks a dialect boundary
8. The Rhenish Fan
A transitional area between High German and Low German, defined
by the divergence of a series of isoglosses
9. Relic areas, Focal Areas, and
A focal area
an area whose dialect has exerted influence on
the dialects of surrounding areas, as reflected in a set of is
oglosses more or less concentrically surrounding it.
e.g., Beverly Hills affect LA called 'coke' with 'soda'
10. Relic area an area isolated from the influences of any
focal area and preserving older linguistic forms that have b
een lost in other regions.
e.g., Antelope Valley still calls bubbly with 'coke', although
other regions have changed the mention of 'coke' with
'soda', then the AV is called the relic area.
11. A transition area
an area whose dialect has been influenced by
the dialect of one or more neighboring focal areas.
e.g., The neighboring areas of Beverly Hills, such as Watts
influenced LA called 'coke' rather than 'soda' . LA called a