I was taught that the the English-speaking workers looked after the
animals - ox, calf, pig, sheep - and then the French-speaking upper
classes ate the meat (beef, veal, pork, mutton).
On 8 Mar 2012, at 22:44, Rowan wrote:
> On 08/03/2012 21:25, David and Joy Etheridge wrote:
>> I believe there are rather a lot of Anglo-Norman words in English,
>> not to mention the French words added later. We would be stuffed
>> without them!
> Would we? I think it more likely that English would have trundled on
> pretty well with its original English vocabulary with a Norse-Danish
> overlay in certain parts of the country. The existing vocabulary
> would have been more than sufficient for everyday use and where it
> was not the language would no doubt have taken on board loan words
> from other languages to fill the gaps. English without Norman French
> would probably look today not unlike Scots.
> As it is, English has a tendency to a parallel Germanic/Romance
> vocabulary in certain fields, eg legal/illegal and lawful/unlawful.