Working with Old High German and Old Saxon texts has become rare in German language and literature studies. Nowadays, the brief introductions to historical linguistics and philology do not suffice to enable students to explore the oldest German texts in significant depth. A new tool could at least help move closer to this dept of textual exploration: an on-line publication of all Old High German and Old Saxon texts with a morphological word-by-word annotation.
The data has been collected by the research project ‘Old German Reference Corpus’ (‘Referenzkorpus Altdeutsch’ / ReA) and can already be used for complex database queries. Within the framework of the ‘eHumanities Centre for Historical Lexicography’ (eHumanities-Zentrum für Historische Lexikographie / ZHistLex), it has been converted into a clearly arranged format, focusing on the information needed for comprehending the texts: the ‘Lesekorpus Altdeutsch’ (LeA).
This tool can of course not replace the work with text editions, translations and commentaries, but will help pave the way from the first insight into the language to a profound understanding. Additionally, a supplemental both-way linking between every word token and the corresponding entry in the on-line dictionaries of historical German is being prepared.
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