• How Cnut became Canute (and how Harthacnut became Airdeconut)

    Author(s):
    Jodie Mann, Thijs Porck (see profile)
    Date:
    2014
    Group(s):
    Anglo-Saxon / Old English, Early Medieval, Medieval Studies
    Subject(s):
    Historical linguistics, Anglo-Saxon studies, Numismatics, Old English
    Item Type:
    Article
    Tag(s):
    Onomastics, Cnut the Great
    Permanent URL:
    http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M60G3GZ0F
    Abstract:
    This article discusses the development of the spelling for the name of Cnut the Great, Viking king of England from 1016 to 1035, from to . The origin of this disyllabic spelling is uncertain and has been attributed to taboo deflection, the simplification of the consonant cluster /kn/ in English and even a pope’s inability to pronounce the name Cnut. A survey of documents contemporary to Cnut the Great and later chronicles, however, suggests that the disyllabic spelling is found first in sources of Norman origin. As such, the disyllabic spelling should be considered a romanisation. This conclusion has important implications for a recently found, early tenth-century coin, bearing the inscription “AIRDECONUT”.
    Notes:
    This is the post-print version, with page numbers of publisher's version added between angle brackets to facilitate referencing.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal article    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    7 months ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved
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