Conclusions: The Decline, Death and Afterlife of a Language

Yaron Matras

in Romani in Britain

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9780748639045
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748671526 | DOI:
Conclusions: The Decline, Death and Afterlife of a Language

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This chapter summarises the historical scenario which has been proposed as an explanation for the emergence of Angloromani. The key questions in the fields of language contact, language death, and the formation of mixed languages and of in-group or special lexicons are explained. Population mixture was in all likelihood a key trigger for the abandonment of Romani as an everyday family language. In its contemporary form, Angloromani is a functional resource that fills the specific communicative needs of the community that are not adequately covered by what is now its everyday language of conversation, English. It establishes a part of a complex repertoire of linguistic structures that are governed by strict constraints on selection and inhibition. It is also mentioned that Angloromani might be a case of a ‘grammaticalisation of a language’.

Keywords: Angloromani; grammaticalisation of a language; language death; language contact; Romani; English; linguistic structures

Chapter.  4336 words. 

Subjects: Sociolinguistics

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