A comparison between English, German, and their ancestors Old English, Old High, and Old Low German
English and German both belong to the Indo-European language family. They are both assigned to the Germanic group and even both belong to the West Germanic branch of the language tree. Nevertheless, they are quite different. English and its ancestor Old English are members of the Anglo-Frisian group together with Frisian and its earlier form, which is called Old Frisian, whereas German belongs to the Proto-German group, which is also called the Netherlander-German group. The German language is subdivided in High and Low German. While High German is the official language of Germany, Low German is regarded as a dialect of it, which is still spoken in the northern part of Germany. Both are important for the history of language because they gave birth to languages, which are still spoken today. Modern High German sprang from Old High German as well as Yiddish, and Old Low German developed not only into the Low German of today but also into Dutch and Afrikaans.
In the following parts of this turn paper, I would like to show on the one hand the different ways in which English and German developed and on the other in how far there are still similarities between them. At first, I will give a short summary of the history, which led to the development of Old English, Old High, and Old Low German.
Further, on I would like to go into linguistics and show similarities and differences between these languages. From time to time, I will compare the English development with that of Low German because both share similarities, which do not exist in High German. The reason for that is that Old High German in contrast to Old English, Old Low German, Old Frisian and Old Dutch did not have an Ingveonic (i.e. language phenomena which appeared at the North Sea coast) character. At the end of the main part of this paper, I want to show in how far the close connection between Old English and Old High/Old Low German can still be seen.
The Saxons were a warlike tribe that inhabited the German North Sea coast to the east of the lower Elbe in what is today Schleswig-Holstein. Their tribe consisted of several tribes and it is assumed that this was also seen in the language, which had on the one hand an Ingveonic, and on the other hand an inner German character.Since the beginning of the 5th centu