Spanish Arabic loanwords in late Middle and early Modern English



How to Cite

Roig-Marín, A. (2020). Spanish Arabic loanwords in late Middle and early Modern English. SELIM. Journal of the Spanish Society for Medieval English Language and Literature., 25(1), 173-185.


The influx of Arabic vocabulary into English has received relatively scarce attention in the past: Taylor (1934) and Cannon & Kaye (1994) remain classic lexicographical works, but few subsequent investigations have monographically tackled the Arabic lexical legacy in English. This article concentrates on the Spanish Arabic influence on English, that is, on Arabic-origin lexis specifically used in the Iberian Peninsula as well as on the vocabulary which was mediated by Spanish at some point in its history from Arabic to its adoption into the English language. It assesses two sets of data retrieved from the Oxford English Dictionary and examines the most frequent routes of entry into the English language (e.g. Arabic > Spanish > French > English) and the larger networks of transmissions of these borrowings throughout the history of the language, with particular attention to the late medieval and early modern periods.


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