I'm interested in finding books that explain English grammar (as much of it and in as much depth as possible), written by scholars from the late 17th/early 18th century. Which do you recommend? Could you please provide a link e.g. to a pdf, where they can be read online?

I found three books from this period: Joseph Aickin's The English grammar (1693), Guy Miège's The English grammar (1688), and Christopher Cooper's Grammatica Linguae Anglicanae (1685), but I couldn't find them online. Could you please provide links to where I can read them, preferably the original versions, rather than reprints?

I'm also interested in finding books about English phonology, likewise written by English late 17th/early 18th century scholars. Could you please recommend some, and provide links to them (preferably original versions)? If books about English phonology didn't exist then, please provide links to phonology books that are as close to that time period as possible. Many thanks!

  • 4
    In your university library? Ask the librarian! Jun 15, 2023 at 14:11
  • BTW, as currently stated, this question is not suitable for a question-and-answer site like this one. We collect public answers to public questions, but we do not send anything to you personally. Please reformulate your question along this guidance. Jun 15, 2023 at 14:14
  • @SirCornflakes I'm not at a university, unfortunately, nor is there a well-equipped library nearby. I didn't mean for people to send me links personally, rather that they would post the links in public answers, so that anyone with the same question could find them. Jun 15, 2023 at 14:19
  • Start with oxfordre.com, en.wikipedia.org, scholar.google.com, and semanticscholar.com in the meanwhile (prior to someone answering) Jun 15, 2023 at 16:56
  • 1
    You can find this information in the card cataloques at the Library of Congress and British Library for free. But then, you have to buy the books unless you can borrow them electronically.
    – Lambie
    Nov 13, 2023 at 16:06

1 Answer 1


You can find such resources by using quality research tools, such as Google Search, Wikipedia, Semantic Scholar, Google Scholar, Oxford Research Encyclopedias, Oxford Handbooks Online, and a host of new AI-powered search tools like Cognosys and Perplexity.

For example, here’s what came up first in https://semanticscholar.com with the keyword-search history of English grammar:

Corpus ID: 253069954 Countability in the history of English: Evidence from grammars and dictionaries
O. Tichý
Published 21 October 2022
Linguistica Pragensia

Since at least the mid twentieth century, countability has been a lively topic in many fields of linguistics as well as an important subject in the field of teaching English as a second/foreign language. Yet the development of this category in the history of English has been little researched and never comprehensively described. This paper looks at the current state of the descriptions of the emergence of this category in the history of English. It notes a possible connection between its promi-nent status in the descriptions of Present-Day English and of English as a global language (studied by many non-native learners as well as linguists). It maps the history of the description of the category in grammars and dictionaries from the fourteenth until the early twentieth century, and prepares the ground for a follow-up corpus-based research of the development of countability in English.

Here’s the paper:


Section 5.4 is called Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries.

It also has a bibliography showing what sources they used:

Bullokar, W. (1586) Pamphlet for grammar (2nd ed., Vol. 2, p. 4087). London: Edmund Bollifant.
Cawdrey, R. (1604) A table Alphabeticall. London: T S for Edmund Weauer.
Cooper, C. (1685) Grammatica linguæ Anglicanæ. London: J. Richardson and Benj. Tooke.
Dyche, T., and W. Pardon (1735) A new general English dictionary. London: Richard Ware.
Elyot, T. (1538) The dictionary of syr Thomas Eliot knyght. London: Thomae Bertheleti.
Fell, J. (1784) An essay towards an English grammar. London: C. Dilly.

And Semantic Scholar has tabs for both papers that the paper cited, and papers which cited it.

A good introduction to research is:

The Oxford Guide to Library Research (4th edition) Thomas Mann Oxford University Press New York and Oxford 2015


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