Recent research

Carol Elaine Percy, Associate Professor

Department of English, University of Toronto

||Recent articles|| ||Reviews|| || Recent talks||

Recent books and articles:

“Political perspectives on linguistic innovation in independent America: learning from the libraries of Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826).” Transatlantic Perspectives on Late Modern English, edited by Marina Dossena. John Benjamins, 2015. 37-53.

“J. Matlock’s Young Ladies Guide to the Knowledge of the English Tongue (1715): contextualising the first grammar of English for ladies.” Transactions of the Philological Society 111.2 (2013): 223-241.

Percy, Carol and Mary Catherine Davidson (eds.) The Languages of Nation: Attitudes and Norms. (Series: Multilingual Matters.) Bristol: Multilingual Matters, 2012.

"The king's speech: metalanguage of nation, man and class in anecdotes about George III." English Language and Linguistics 16:2 (2012): 281-299. @Cambridge University Press.

“Attitudes, prescriptivism, and standardization.” The Oxford Handbook of the History of English, edited by Terttu Nevalainen and Elizabeth Closs Traugott. Oxford University Press, 2012. 446-456.

"Standardization: Codifiers." English Historical Linguistics, ed. Alexander Bergs and Laurel J. Brinton. 2 vols. (Series: Handbcher zur Sprach- und Kommunkationswissenschaft.) Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. I: 1006-1020.

“Robert Lowth and the Critics: Literary contexts for the “Critical Notes” in his Short Introduction to English Grammar (1762).” Historiographia Linguistica 39.1 (2012): 9-26.

“Early Advertising and Newspapers as Sources of Sociolinguistic Investigation.” The Handbook of Historical Sociolinguistics , edited by Juan M. Hernández-Campoy and J. Camilo Conde-Silvestre. Wiley-Blackwell, 2012. 191-210.

"Women's grammars." In Eighteenth-Century English: Ideology and Change, ed. Raymond Hickey. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010. 38-58.

"How eighteenth-century book reviewers became language guardians." In Social Roles and Language Practices in Late Modern English, ed. Päivi Pahta, Minna Nevala, Arja Nurmi, and Minna Palander-Collin. Amsterdam & Philadelphia: John Benjamins, 2010. 55-85.

“Periodical Reviews and the Rise of Prescriptivism: the Monthly (1749–1844) and Critical Review (1756–1817) in the Eighteenth Century.” Current Issues in Late Modern English . Ed. Ingrid Tieken-Boon van Ostade and Wim van der Wurff. Bern: Peter Lang, 2009.117-150.

"Learning and virtue: English grammar and the eighteenth-century girls' school." In Educating the Child in Enlightenment Britain: Beliefs, Cultures, Practices, ed. Mary Hilton and Jill Shefrin. Farnham, Surrey & Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2009. 77-98.

"Mid-century grammars and their reception in the Monthly Review and the Critical Review. In Grammars, Grammarians and Grammar-Writing in Eighteenth-Century England, ed. Ingrid Tieken-Boon van Ostade. Berlin and New York: Mouton de Gruyter, 2008. 125-142.

"Liberty, Sincerity, (In)accuracy: Prescriptions for Manly English in 18th-century Reviews and the 'Republic of Letters.'" In Perspectives on Prescriptivism,, ed. Joan C. Beal, Carmela Nocera & Massimo Sturiale. Bern: Peter Lang, 2008. 113-145.

"'To HEL with PC': teaching 'the history of the English language' with the Peterborough Chronicle in North America." In The language of the Peterborough Chronicle, ed. Alexander Bergs & Janne Skaffari. Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, 2007. 175-191.

"Disciplining women? Grammar, gender, and leisure in the works of Ellenor Fenn (1743-1813)." Historiographia Linguistica 33:1 (2006). 109-137.

With Joan C. Beal, Jane Hodson, and Richard Steadman-Jones: "Introduction." New Approaches to the Study of Later Modern English in Historiographia Linguistica 33:1 (2006). 1-9.

"Writing from the asylum: Martha Shakespear Lloyd at the linguistic limits of eighteenth-century femininity." Women's Writing 13:1 (2006), a special issue on Epistolarity to 1900. 83-102.

"Consumers of correctness: men, women, and language in eighteenth-century classified advertisements." New perspectives on English historical linguistics: selected papers from 12 ICEHL, Glasgow, 21-26 August 2002. Volume I: Syntax and morphology, ed. Christian Kay, Simon Horobin, and Jeremy Smith. Current Issues in Linguistic Theory 251. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins, 2004. 153-176.

"Plane English: or, the orthography of opposition in mid-eighteenth-century Britain." The Age of Johnson 15 (2004): 223-268.

"James Cook." The Literary Encyclopedia.

"The Art of Grammar in the Age of Sensibility: The Accidence ... for Young Ladies (1775)." Insights into late modern English, ed. Marina Dossena and Charles Jones. Series: Linguistic insights: studies in language and communication. Bern: Peter Lang, 2003. 45-82.

"The social symbolism of contractions and colloquialisms in contemporary accounts of Dr. Samuel Johnson: Bozzy, Piozzi, and the authority of intimacy." Historical Sociolinguistics and Sociohistorical Linguistics 2 (2002)

`Easy women': defining and confining the `feminine' style in eighteenth-century print culture." Language Sciences 22 (2000): 315-337. Special volume: Rhetoric, language, and literature: new perspectives on English in the eighteenth century.

Captain James Cook and the English language: a bibliographical guide. Historical sociolinguistics & Sociohistorical linguistics.

"`To Study Nature rather than Books': James Cook as Naturalist Observer and Literary Author." Pacific Studies 19.3 (September 1996; published March 1998). 1-30.

"Earlier Editorial Practice vs. Later Linguistic Prescript: Some Eighteenth-Century Illustrations." English Language Notes 34.3 (March 1997): 23-39.

"Eighteenth-Century Book Reviewers' Attitudes Towards Language: A Database Project." Tracing the Trail of Time. Proceedings from the Second Diachronic Corpora Workshop. Ed. Raymond Hickey, Merja Kytö, Ian Lancashire, and Matti Rissanen. (Series: Language and Computers 18). Amsterdam: Editions Rodopi, 1997. 215-231.

"Paradigms Lost: Bishop Lowth and the `Poetic Dialect' in his English Grammar." Neophilologus 81 (1997): 129-144.

Percy, Carol, Charles Meyer and Ian Lancashire, eds. Synchronic Corpus Linguistics. (Series: Language and Computers). General editor Jan Aarts. Amsterdam: Editions Rodopi, 1996.

"In the Margins: Dr Hawkesworth's Emendations to the Language of Captain Cook's Voyages." English Studies 77.6 (1996). 549-578.

"English 'Normative' Grammar in Practice: the Case of Captain Cook." English Historical Linguistics 1994. Selected papers from the 8th ICEHL (Edinburgh, 19-23 September 1994). Ed. Derek Britton. Current Issues in Linguistic Theory 135. Amsterdam & Philadelphia: John Benjamins (1996). 339-362.

"Grammatical Lapses in Dr John Hawkesworth's Voyages (1773)." Leeds Studies in English 26 (1995): 145-168.

"Paradigms for their Sex? Women's Grammars in Late Eighteenth-Century England." La grammaire des dames/Women and grammar. Ed. W. Ayres-Bennett. Series: Histoire, épistémologie, langage 17 (1994). 121-41.

"The verb shoalden in Captain James Cook's "Endeavour" Journal, 1768-1771." Notes and Queries 39.1 (1992): 68-70.

"Variation between -(e)th and -(e)s spellings of the third person singular present indicative; Captain James Cook's Endeavour journal, 1768-1771." Neuphilologische Mitteilungen XCII.3 (1991): 351-8.

"Words and weeds: the dandelion in English botanical texts." Scintilla (1985-1986). Toronto: at the Centre for Medieval Studies. 118-31.

Recent reviews:

Review of The Dartons: Publishers of Educational Aids, Pastimes & Juvenile Ephemera 1787–1876, a Bibliographic Checklist, by Jill Shefrin. University of Toronto Quarterly 80:2 (Spring 2011): 346-348.

Review of Early Modern English News Discourse. Newspapers, Pamphlets and Scientific News Discourse, edited by Andreas Jucker. Journal of Historical Pragmatics 12.1-2 (2011): 303-313

Review of Romanticism and Linguistic Theory: William Hazlitt, Language and Literature , by Marcus Tomalin. Review of English Studies 61 (2010): 825-828.

Review of Language, Custom and Nation in the 1790s: Locke, Tooke, Wordsworth, Edgeworth, by Susan Manly. Review of English Studies 60 (2008): 156-158.

Review of A History of Cant and Slang Dictionaries, vol. 1, 1567-1785, by Julie Coleman. Notes and Queries 52:2 (June 2005): 246-247.

Review of Historical Sociolinguistics: Language Change in Tudor and Stuart England, by Terttu Nevalainen and Helena Raumolin-Brunberg. English Language and Linguistics, 8.1 (2004): 154-159.

Review of Women's Writing and the Circulation of Ideas: Manuscript Publication in England, 1550-1800, edited by George L. Justice and Nathan Tinker. SHARP News, 12.1 (Winter 2003).

Review of Collocational and Idiomatic Aspects of Composite Predicates in the History of English, edited by Laurel J. Brinton and Minoji Akimoto. University of Toronto Quarterly 70.1 (Winter 2000-2001): 303-304.

Review of The Gentleman's Daughter: Women's Lives in Georgian England, by Amanda Vickery. Historical Sociolinguistics and Sociohistorical Linguistics (2001).

Review of The Language Web: The Power and Problem of Words, by Jean Aitchison. Notes and Queries 243.1 (March 1998): 153-154.

Review of Language and Society in Early Modern England: Selected Essays 1991-1994, by Vivian Salmon. Notes and Queries 243.1 (March 1998): 152-153.

Review of Empire of Words: The Reign of the OED, by John Willinsky, University of Toronto Quarterly 66.1 (1996/1997): 315-318.

Review of `Talking Proper': The Rise of Accent as Social Symbol, by Lynda Mugglestone, Notes and Queries 241.4 (December 1996): 491-492.

Review of A Language Suppressed: The Pronunciation of the Scots Language in the 18th Century, by Charles Jones, Notes and Queries 241.4 (December 1996): 492-493.

Review of Pause and Effect: a History of Punctuation in the West (1993), by M. B. Parkes, Modern Philology 93.2 (November 1995): 277-81.

Recent talks:

“Grammar and Gender in a Colonial Context: Women Teaching Women in Early Nineteenth-Century India.” CSECS, Montreal, 15-18 October, 2014.

“Bathsua Makin’s languages of learning and the status of seventeenth-century English.” SHEL-8 (Studies in the History of the English Language), Brigham Young University (Provo, UT), 26-28 September, 2013.

“Linguistic prescriptivism in revolutionary America: learning from the library of Thomas Jefferson.” LModE-5: Transatlantic Perspectives on Late Modern English, University of Bergamo, 28-30 August 2013.

"Defining "grammar" in the female novel of development: more than an instrument of social mobility." Presented at conference “Novel approaches: The language of women’s fiction, 1750-1830.” 24-25 February, 2012. Chawton House Library, Hampshire, UK.

“Choose your verbs: the role(s) of games in children's grammatical instruction in mid-nineteenth century Britain." Presented at “Enduring Trifles: Writing the History of Childhood with Ephemera.” Cotsen Children’s Library, Princeton University, 17-19 February, 2011.

“Lowth and the Critics.” Plenary lecture. Robert Lowth Conference, University of Leiden, the Netherlands. 17-18 December, 2010.

“Contexts for late-eighteenth-century English: The royal courts.” Presented at the Fourth International Conference on Late Modern English, University of Sheffield, UK, 27 - 29 May 2010

“Arts” and “Arms”: France, Britain, and the English Grammar war of 1710-12. Presented at CSECS (Canadian Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies). Ottawa, ON. 5 November, 2009.

With John R. Percy and Maire E. Percy, "Engaging Students in Research and Scholarship: Three Perspectives." Presented at "Learning in Action -- Leading the Way." 4th Annual Teaching & Learning Symposium. University College, University of Toronto. 23 October 2009.

“The “standard” in scholarly research and in public debate: thoughts on present-day Canadian English.” Prescriptivisme & Patriotisme: Language Norms & Identities from Nationalism to Globalization. August 19, 2009. Co-written with Professor Stefan Dollinger, UBC English. Presented by me.

“18th-century dramatists as popular grammarians: social climbing, style shifting, and verbal –s.” SHEL (Studies in the History of the English Language), Banff (University of Calgary, University of British Columbia), 30 April – 3 May 2009.

“ ‘Persian recruits’? Loanwords as Corruption or Conquest in the Wake of the Seven Years’ War.” Presented at the Canadian Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, Montréal, PQ, 15-18 October, 2008.

“ English grammar in eighteenth-century society: Evidence from autobiographical writings?” Presented at the 15th International Conference on English Historical Linguistics, University of Munich, 24-30 August, 2008.

“Who is he? The gender-neutral pronoun rule in its eighteenth-century contexts.” Presented at the Canadian Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, Winnipeg, Manitoba, 17-20 October 2007.

"The role of periodicals in the rise of prescriptivism: evidence from the Monthly and the Critical Reviews." Presented at the 3rd Late Modern English Conference. University of Leiden, the Netherlands, 29 August - 1 September, 2007.

“How Book Reviewers Became Language Guardians: Grammar and Gender in the Monthly and Critical Review.” Presented at Perspectives on Prescriptivism, University of Catania at Ragusa, Italy, 20-22 April 2006.

“Hannah Kilham’s Plan for a Dictionary.” Presented at ASECS, Montréal, 30 March – 1 April 2006.

“Teaching grammar, performing authority: educating women in the wake of the French Revolution.” Presented at Education and Culture in the Long Eighteenth Century (1688-1932), University of Cambridge, England. 8-10 September 2005.

"To HEL with PC: the Peterborough Chronicle in North American History of the English language curricula." Presented at the Peterborough Chronicle Panel, 13th International Conference on English Historical Linguistics, University of Vienna, 23-28 August, 2004.

"English grammar for schoolgirls: prescript and practice in the wake of the French Revolution." Presented at the Gender and Enlightenment seminar, Institute for Historical Research. University of London. 2 March 2004.

"Grammar games and gender roles." Presented at BSECS, University of Oxford (St Hugh's College), 3-5 January, 2004.

"At the linguistic limits of femininity: writing from the private asylum." Presented at the Centre for Nineteenth Century Studies, University of Sheffield, 4 November 2003.

"Disciplining women? Ellenor Fenn and English grammar." Presented at Histories of Prescriptivism: Alternative Approaches to the Study of English 1700-1900, University of Sheffield, 3-5 July 2003.

"Monetary metaphors for eighteenth-century English." Presented at CSECS ("The Enlightenment in Motion: circulation, exchanges, transmission." Quebec City, 23-26 October 2002.

"A School for Sailors? Periodical reviews and linguistic criticism of eighteenth-century maritime books." Presented at The History of the Maritime Book Conference. Princeton University English Department, 4-5 October 2002.

"Consumers of correctness: linguistic prescriptivism in eighteenth-century London newspaper advertisements." Plenary lecture, presented at ICEHL12 (12th International Conference on English Historical Linguistics). University of Glasgow, Scotland, UK, 26 August 2002.

"Lady Ellenor Fenn and grammars for mothers." Workshop on "Radical approaches to English grammar," at ICEHL12 (12th International Conference on English Historical Linguistics). University of Glasgow, Scotland, UK, 25 August 2002.

"Prescriptive grammar for girls in the age of sensibility: or, Grammar à la Mode. Ellin Devis (1746-1820) and The Accidence (1775)." Presented at LMEC (Later Modern English Conference) 2001. University of Edinburgh, 29 August - 1 September, 2001.

"'Why did they invent the word I if we are never to make use of it?': writing from the eighteenth-century private madhouse." Presented at CSECS [Canadian Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies] 2000. Toronto. October 19-21, 2000.

"Astronomy on Grub Street: popular astronomy in the age of Captain Cook." Presented to the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Toronto Centre. 4 October 2000.

"The authority of intimacy: the social symbolism of contractions and colloquialisms in the works of Bozzy, Piozzi, and Dr. Samuel Johnson". Presented at the Eleventh International Conference on English Historical Linguistics (ICEHL11). Santiago de Compostela, Spain. 7-11 September 2000.

"Liberty, sincerity, taciturnity? collocations of the word manly in British book reviews of the 1760s". SHEL-1: Studies in the history of the English Language. UCLA, May 26-28, 2000.

"Ellin Devis (1775) and Girls' Grammar in Eighteenth-Century England." Comparative Literature Symposium 33: Woman in the Eighteenth Century. Texas Tech, Lubbock, Texas, Jan 27-29, 2000.

"The Mariner on Grub Street: Captain James Cook and the World of Print". The State Library of New South Wales, Australia. June 3, 1999.

"For the Honour of their Country: Spelling and Empire". Research Seminar Series, Department of English, University of Sydney, Australia. May 31, 1999.

"Women's words as commodity in some children's books of the 1780s". Presented at the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (ASECS). Milwaukee, USA. 24-28, March 1999.

"Plane English: the cultural complexities of Latinate spelling in mid-eighteenth century England." Presented at the Tenth International Conference on English Historical Linguistics [ICEHL10]. Manchester, UK. 21-26 August, 1998.

"Correcting Captain Cook: Politeness, penguins, and prepositions." Macquarie University, March 23, 1998. National Library of Australia, Canberra, March 31, 1998.

"Women teaching the mother tongue in eighteenth-century England." Department of English, University of Sydney, Australia. March 24, 1998.

"Language in the marketplace: monetary metaphors for language and its users in the eighteenth-century periodical press." Presented at the International Conference on the Standardisation of English. Lucy Cavendish College, Cambridge, UK. 3-6 July, 1997.

"Imitation and Innovation: Eighteenth-Century Reviewers' Attitudes to `New Words' in the Literary Register". Presented at "Linguistics and Literary History" Conference [LLH]. Trinity College, Cambridge, UK. 1 - 4 September, 1996.

"Eighteenth-Century Ease: The `Oral' Arts in an Age of `Literacy'". Presented at the Ninth International Conference on English Historical Linguistics [ICEHL9]. Poznan, Poland. 26 - 31 August, 1996.

"`Calculated Only for the Meridian of Aberdeen'?: Scots English in the mid-century periodical reviews". Presented at CSECS [Canadian Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies]. Windsor, Ontario. 11 - 15 October 1995.

"Easy women: Stereotypes of Women's Writing in Two Eighteenth-Century Periodical Reviews". Presented at "Culture, Style, and Language in Eighteenth-Century England". St. Catharine's College, Cambridge, UK. 21 - 22 September 1995.

"Using a database to explore the external history of the English language: eighteenth-century reviewers' attitudes to Scottish authors and their language". 16th ICAME conference [16th International Conference on English Language Research Using Computerized Corpora]. New College, University of Toronto. 24-28 May, 1995.

"Eighteenth-Century Normative Grammar in Practice: the case of Captain Cook." Presented at the Eighth International Conference on English Historical Linguistics, Edinburgh, Scotland. 19-23 September 1994.

"Southward Ho! Reading Captain Cook in the nineteenth century." Invited paper at a symposium on "Literary History" at the University of Western Ontario. 24 October 1992.

"Very like a quale: Captain Cook's comparisons in like." CSECS [Canadian Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies]. St John's, Newfoundland. 15-18 October 1992.

"Correcting Captain Cook. John Hawkesworth and the "Endeavour" Journal." MLA [Modern Languages Association]. San Francisco, USA. December, 1991.

"Robert Lowth and English Grammar." European Society for the Study of English. Norwich, UK. September 1991.

"Two English female grammarians in the eighteenth century." Henry Sweet Society. Oxford, UK. September 1991.

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