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PD Dr. Martina Häcker

Martina Häcker holds an MA, Ph. D. and Habilitation from Freiburg University and has taught English Language and Linguistics in Germany, Switzerland and Denmark. Her main research interest is in language variation and change. While she maintains an interest in Scots and Scottish English and phonological change, her most recent word focuses on the socio-cultural causes of lexical and phraseological change, including language contact.


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Research Interests

Language Contact and Transfer

Historical Lexicology and Phraseology

Historical Phonology

English Dialect Grammar



The Origins and History of [h]-Insertion and [h]-Loss in English: A Corpus-Based Investigation’ (Habilitationsschrift)

Adverbial Clauses in Scots: A Semantic-Syntactic Study, Topics in English Linguistics 27 (Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 1999) [pp. xiv, 306].


Articles in Refereed Periodicals


‘”A Pointing Stocke to Euery One that Passeth Vp and Downe”: Metonymy in Early English Terms of Ridicule’, Neophilologus 104:1 (2020): 131-150.

 ‘Kinship or Friendship? The Word Cousin as a Term of Address for Non-Relatives in Middle English’ Journal of Historical Pragmatics 20:1 (2019): 96-131.

 ‘From Respelling to IPA in English Dictionaries: Increase in Accuracy or Increase in Prescriptivism?’ Language and History 55 (2012): 47-62.

‘French-English Language Contact in Medieval England: The Evidence of Letters’, Arbeiten aus Anglistik und Amerikanistik 36 (2011): 133-160.

 ‘History and Tradition: The Background to Scott’s The Tale of Old Mortality’, Middle Ground: Journal of Literary and Cultural Encounters 2 for 2008 (2009), 96-126.

‘Überlegungen zur Etymologie der Vergleichskonjunktion nor’, Archiv für das Studium der neueren Sprachen und Literaturen 246 (2009), 50-67.

‘Eleven Pets and Twenty Ways to Express One’s Opinion: The Vocabulary Learners of German Acquire at English Secondary Schools’, Language Learning Journal 36 (2008), 25-36.

‘An Englishman’s Vindication of Scots: James Adams (1737–1802) — Jesuit, Teacher and Linguist’, Historiographia Linguistica 33 (2006), 85-107.

‘And Him No More Than a Minister’s Man: The English Subordinating and-Construction in Cross-Linguistic Perspective’, Leeds Working Papers in Linguistics and Phonetics 7 (1999), 36-48.

‘Literary Dialects and Communication in The Tale of Old Mortality and The Brownie of Bodsbeck’, Studies in Hogg and His World 8 (1997), 1-11.

‘Mothers, Wives and Witches: The Depiction of Women in Galbert of Bruges’ Account of the Murder of Charles the Good’, Bulletin of International Medieval Research 2-3 for 1996-97 (1997), 10-26.

‘The Original Length of the Old English Judith: More Doubt(s) on the Missing Text’, Leeds Studies in English n.s. 27 (1996), 1-18.

‘The Death of English for and German denn: Linguistic Change in Progress’, Grazer Linguistische Studien 42 (1994), 29-35.

‘Subordinate and-Clauses in Scots and Hiberno-English: Origins and Development’, Scottish Language 13 (1994), 34-50.


Chapters in Books

‘Allusions to and in Cocke Lorelles Bote: A Late Middle English Poem, Its Afterlife and Its Sources’ [forthcoming]


‘Cross-Language Transfer of Formulae: The Case of English Letters’, in Carmen Mellado Blanco (ed.), Productive Patterns in Phraseology and Construction Grammar. A Multilingual Approach (Berlin: de Gruyter, 2022). 235-263.


‘The Language of Misogyny in Galbert of Bruges’ Account of the Murder of Charles the Good’, in Jeff Rider and Alan Murray (eds), Galbert of Bruges and the Historiography of Medieval Flanders (Washington, DC: Catholic University of America Press, 2009), 126-144.

‘From Linking [h] to Glottal Stop: Changes in the Phonotactic System of 20th-Century Cockney’, in Cornelia Tschichold (ed.), English Core Linguistics: Essays in Honour of D.J. Allerton (Bern: Lang, 2003), 31-53.

‘A Hybrid between Scots and Southern British English: The Phonology, Lexis and Grammar of Scottish English’, in D.J. Allerton et al. (eds), Perspectives on English as a World Language (Basel: Schwabe, 2002), 1-13.


Articles in Conference Proceedings


‘The Contrastive Approach in the History  of Language Teaching from Late Antiquity to Modern Times’ [in press].

‘Silence in Late Medieval English Letters: Communication Failures, Delayed Responses and Omissions’, in Jörg Helbig and René Schalleger (eds), Anglistentag 2009, Klagenfurt (Trier: Wissenschaftlicher Verlag Trier, 2010), 395-405.

‘Using the Web as a Corpus: An Analysis of the Distribution and Use of the Be Sat Construction’, in Clive Upton and Barry Hesselwood (eds), Proceedings of Methods in Dialectology, XIII: Papers from the Thirteenth International Conference on Methods in Dialectology, 2008 (Frankfurt: Lang, 2010), 229-239.

‘Linking [h] and the Variation between Linking [r] and Glottal Onsets in South African English’, in David Spurr and Cornelia Tschichold (eds), The Space of English, Swiss Papers in English Language and Literature, 17 (Tübingen: Narr, 2005), 207-227.

‘Theorie und Praxis des Lautwandels: Was die Analyse mittelenglischer Texte für die Theorie­bildung im Bereich der Phonologie leisten kann’, in Gabriele Knappe (ed.), Englische Sprachwissenschaft und Mediävistik: Standpunkte—Perspektiven—Neue Wege (Frankfurt: Lang, 2005), 137-155.

‘Intrusive [h] in Present-day English Accents and <h>-Insertion in Medieval and Early-Modern English Manuscripts: Hypercorrection or Functionally Motivated Language Use?’, in Christian Kay et al. (eds), New Perspectives on English Historical Linguistics: Selected Papers From 12 ICEHL, Glasgow, 21-26 August 2002, II: Lexis and Transmission (Amsterdam: Benjamins, 2004), 109-123.

‘The Relationship between [h]-Addition and [h]-Omission Revisited’, in Christoph Bode, Sebastian Domsch and Hans Sauer (eds), Anglistentag 2003, München (Trier: Wissenschaft­­licher Verlag Trier, 2004), 507-518.

‘Why Is There No /h/-Dropping in Scots? Loss and Insertion of /h/ as a Contact Phenomenon’, in Jürg Strässler (ed.), Tendenzen europäischer Linguistik: Akten des 31. Linguistischen Kolloquiums, Bern 1996 (Tübingen: Niemeyer, 1998), 71-76.


Articles in Preparation


‘Phraseological Transfer in German Native Speakers’ Production of English Academic Writing: The Case of It Is to Say’.


Reviews (from 2016)

‘Transfer, Adaptation and Integration: The Impact of Linguistic Contact with France on Medieval England’. [to appear in in Bulletin of International Medieval Research]

Smith, Jeremy, Older Scots: A Linguistic Reader (Scottish Text Society, fifth series, 9). Edinburgh: The Scottish Text Society, 2012. Neuphilologische Mitteilungen 117 (2016): 471-475.


Nicolaï, Robert (ed.), Questioning Language Contact: Limits of Contact, Contact at its Limits (Brill Studies in Language Contact and Dynamics of Language, 1). Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2014. Neuphilologische Mitteilungen 117 (2016): 223-227.





Invited Lectures


‘Who needs Latin? Die Rolle der lateinischen Sprache für das Anglistikstudium’, Nordrhein-Westfälische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Düsseldorf, 8 September 2014.

‘French-English Language Contact in Medieval England: The Evidence of Letters’, Universität Graz, Austria, 12 November 2009.

‘James Adams’, Colloquium (by invitation only) ‘Histories of Prescriptivism: Alternative Approaches to the Study of English 1700-1900’, University of Sheffield, 4 May 2003.

‘Das h-dropping im Englischen: Französischer Einfluß oder interne Entwicklung?’, Linguistikkreis, Universität Basel, 9 May 2000.

‘And Him the Minister, An Me Wi a Bad Leg Tae: Subordinating And and the Emphatic Use of Co-ordinators in European Languages’, Leeds Linguistic Society, University of Leeds, 5 November 1998.