By Jonathan Roper

Alliteration happens in a wide selection of contexts in stress-initial languages, together with Icelandic, Finnish and Mongolian. it may be present in English from Beowulf to The solar. however, alliteration continues to be an unexamined phenomenon. This pioneering quantity takes alliteration as its valuable concentration throughout numerous languages and domain names.

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Blake, Norman. 1992. ‘The Literary Language’. ), The Cambridge History of the English Language, Vol. 2: 1066–1476. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Bredehoft, Thomas A. 2001. ‘Estimating Probabilities and Alliteration Frequencies in Old English Verse’. Old English Newsletter, 34 (1): 19–23. Bredehoft, Thomas A. 2005. Early English Metre. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. Brink, August. 1920. Stab und Wort im ‘Gawin’. Eine stilistische Untersuchung. Halle: Niemeyer. Burke, Kenneth. 1941.

As this suggests, alliteration is used in street–names to signal a derogatory judgement, just as it is in field-names. Variations on Raton Rowe, ‘row of rat-infested houses’, are found in most medieval towns. Like other alliterative names, this is first found in the thirteenth century, and cannot be much earlier, raton having been borrowed by Middle 28 Alliteration in Culture English from French about this time. Vicus de Ratunrowe appears in 1288 at Norwich (PN Nf 1:130), followed by Ratonsrowe (1301) at Shrewsbury (PN Sa 4:7), Ratounrowe (1308) at Nottingham (PN Nt 16), and le Ratoun Rowe (1330) at Derby, afterwards Rotten Rowe (1540) (PN Db 2:449).

It is possible that this might apply also to their exemplar, since the London street is Selvernestrate (1279),17 from the adjective seolfern, and this seems to refer to the road itself rather than its inhabitants. As this suggests, alliteration is used in street–names to signal a derogatory judgement, just as it is in field-names. Variations on Raton Rowe, ‘row of rat-infested houses’, are found in most medieval towns. Like other alliterative names, this is first found in the thirteenth century, and cannot be much earlier, raton having been borrowed by Middle 28 Alliteration in Culture English from French about this time.

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