H.L. Mencken (18801956). The American Language. 1921.
literature that it has produced9 tend to keep it relatively pure, even from English influences. But a great many loan-words have nevertheless got into it, and it shows some phenomena that instantly arrest the attention of a German arriving from Germany, for example, the use of gleiche for to like, by false analogy from gleich (=like, similar). The German encountered in German newspapers printed in the United States is often very bad, but this is simply due to the that much of it is written by uneducated men. Nothing approaching a general decay is visible in it; in intent, at least, it is always good High German.
The French spoken in Canada has been so extensively studied and literature is so accessible that it is scarcely necessary to describe it at any length. A very extensive investigation of it was undertaken by the late Dr. A. M. Elliott, of the Johns Hopkins University; his conclusions may be found in the American Journal of Philology.10 Since then researches into its history, phonology and morphology have been made by James Geddes, Jr.,11 A. F. Chamberlain12 and other competent philologists, and there has grown up an extensive literature by native, French-speaking Canadians.13 Dr. Elliott says that alarmed purists predicted so long ago as 1817 that the French of Canada would be completely obliterated by English, and this fear still shows itself in all discussions of the subject by French-Canadians
Note 9. Of. Non-English Writings: I, German, by A. B. Faust, in the Cambridge History of American Literature, vol. iv, p. 572 ff. There is a valuable bibliography appended, p. 813 ff. [back]
Note 10. Vol. vi, p. 135; vol. vii, p. 141; vol. vii, p. 135 and p. 338; vol. x, p. 133. [back]
Note 11. Mr. Geddes studies have been chiefly published in Germany. His Study of an Acadian-French Dialect Spoken on the North Shore of the Baie-des-Chaleurs; Halle, 1908, contains an exhaustive bibliography. [back]
Note 12. He printed an article on Dialect Research in Canada in Dialect Notes, vol. i, p. 43. A bibliography is added. [back]
Note 13. For example: La Langue Française au Canada, by Louvigny de Montigny; Ottawa, 1916, and Le Parler Populaire des Canadiens Français; by N. E. Dionne; Quebee, 1909. The latter is a lexicon running to 671 pages. [back]