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Towards a Social History of Early Modern Dutch

From the sixteenth through the eighteenth centuries, patterns of living and communication in the Netherlands transformed dramatically due to developments such as the rise of cities and the invention of the printing press. Now, cultural historian Peter Burke demonstrates the key role these changes played in the growth of early modern Dutch.

Burke casts a wide net in order to reveal the factors that led to alterations in the Dutch language, exploring, for example, the ever-changing relationship between the vernacular and Latin, the incorporation of words from other languages, and the birth of a movement toward standardization. Placing these trends in a pan-European context, Burke’s analysis of the evolution of Dutch will prove to be illuminating reading for cultural historians in a variety of fields.