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Type: Journal article
Title: The Creole legacy of a bounteous mutineer: Edward Young's Caribbean contribution to the language of Pitcairn and Norfolk Islands
Author: Baker, P.
Mühlhäusler, P.
Citation: Acta Linguistica Hafniensia: International Journal of Linguistics, 2013; 45(2):170-186
Publisher: Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Issue Date: 2013
ISSN: 0374-0463
Statement of
Philip Baker and Peter Mühlhäusler
Abstract: Ross and Moverley's The Pitcairnese Language (1964) revealed that its word [mɔːgə] ‘thin’could only be attributed to Edward Young who, alone of the Bounty mutineers, was born on the Caribbean island of St Kitts. This suggested that other Kittitian influences might be found in the speech of the mutineers' descendants, most of whom now live on Norfolk Island. Table 1 lists 50 such items which are potentially attributable to Young. We also discuss the limited information we have on Young's background. This indicates that he could speak and write English in the manner of a well-educated person. This may seem to conflict with our belief that he contributed at least some Creole features to Pitcairnese. We speculate that he used standard English in most contexts but drew on his childhood knowledge of Kittitian in informal circumstances such as the naming of Pitcairn's fish species and in playing games with the children he looked after. However, we fully acknowledge that this view cannot be confirmed unless considerably more is discovered about his life in St Kitts and England prior to his employment in 1784 on a ship captained by George Young, the man we believe to be his father.
Keywords: creoles; dialect formation; Caribbean Creole English; Polynesian influences; sociohistorical factors
Description: Published online: 14 Oct 2014
Rights: © 2014 The Linguistic Circle of Copenhagen
DOI: 10.1080/03740463.2014.897814
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Appears in Collections:Aurora harvest 7
Linguistics publications

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