“On Alway(s) and Algate(s) in Middle English Again”

Bibliographical details

Iyeiri, Yoko. 2016. “On Alway(s) and Algate(s) in Middle English Again”. Memoirs of the Faculty of Letters, Kyoto University 55: 61-80. (Downloadable PDF)

Historical development of the adverb always

This paper discusses the four forms algate, algates, alway, and always in later Middle English by exploring the text data in Selected Middle English Texts in Print (METiP). It clarifies that on the whole algate and algate(s) are much less frequent than alway and always. As for the contrast between alway and always, the former form is still commoner in Middle English. This is not surprising since the rise of the s-added form, namely always, is known to be a notable feature of the Early Modern English period (Iyeiri 2014). Thomas Malory is, however, exceptional and provides a notable number of always (instead of alway). On the other hand, the addition of –s to algate seems to be much commoner, though the extent of the use of algates (rather than algate) differs to a significant extent depending on different authors.

Related publications

  • Iyeiri, Yoko. 2014. “The Shift from Alway to Always in the History of English”, in Studies in Middle and Modern English: Historical Change, ed. Yoko Iyeiri & Jennifer Smith, pp. 29-47. Suita: Osaka Books.
  • Iyeiri, Yoko. 2020. “Selected Authors’ Writings in the Early Modern English Period and the Historical Development of Always“. Memoirs of the Faculty of Letters, Kyoto University 59: 295-307.