The Origins of New Zealand English

Jennifer Hay, Margaret Maclagan and Elizabeth Gordon

in New Zealand English

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print March 2008 | ISBN: 9780748625291
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651542 | DOI:
The Origins of New Zealand English

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The European settlement of New Zealand is usually dated from 1840, which was the year that Maori and Europeans signed the Treaty of Waitangi. New Zealand English (NZE) has, therefore, developed and evolved over a period of about 150 years. The date is significant because the beginning of European settlement in New Zealand is recent enough for the early stages of NZE to be studied in a way that was impossible for those studying other earlier varieties of native-speaker English, such as American English or Australian English. This chapter discusses NZE and Cockney, NZE and Australia, NZE and new-dialect formation, early written records, spoken NZE data, four early New Zealand speakers from the Mobile Unit archive, evidence from spoken data, and theories about the origins and development of NZE.

Keywords: European settlement; Cockney; Australian English; new-dialect formation; NZE

Chapter.  4643 words. 

Subjects: Linguistics

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