In Angle-Saxish, the names of things are masculine, feminine, or neuter. There are two ways which enable us to determine the gender of many nouns:
- By meaning. Names of males are masculine; names of females are feminine; names of young creatures (because their sex is less easily distinguishable) are neuter: e.g. se Kyng, the king; ðe Kwien, the queen; ðat Çhild, Barn, the child. Exceptions: ðat Waif, the woman; ðat Mäden, the girl.
- By termination. (a) Nouns ending in -eð, -els, -end, -er, -duum, -schiep, -staves, names of persons in -ing and -ling, and compounds ending with a masculine word, are masculine. (b) Nouns ending in -estre, -nes, -räden, -ð, -ung, and compounds ending with a feminine word, are feminine. (c) Nouns ending in -ern, -raiçh, -look, and compounds ending with a neuter word, are neuter.
Angle-Saxish has the following cases: Nominative, Accusative, Genitive, Dative. The nominative serves also as a vocative.
Strong and weak
Every noun in Angle-Saxish belongs to either the strong or the weak declension. (On the other hand, almost all adjectives may be declined both strong and weak.) Most weak nouns, except for loanwords, end in -e in the nominative singular.
Loss of middle vowels
Some disyllabic nouns and adjectives with a short second syllable, such as Ieðel, native land, Dievel, devil, uðer, second, syncopate the middle vowel in inflection according to the following:
Rule: When a termination beginning with a vowel is added to a disyllable, whose first syllable is long and second syllable short (or historically short in Late West Saxon), the vowel of the second syllable is usually dropped. Thus:
|Ieðel, native land||long +short||gen. Ieðles|
|loytel, little||long +short||gen. loytles|
|Heven, heaven||short +short||gen. Hevenes|
|Harvest, autumn||long +long||Harvestes|
Angle-Saxish words ending in consonant + vocalic liquid or nasal often introduce a vowel before the liquid or nasal, making the latter into a distinct syllable, as in Vugel, bird. These words for the most part conform to the rule laid down above: thus we have gen. Wintres from Winter.
Exception: Vugel, bird, gen. Vugles, pl. Vugles
In the following words the second vowel is intrusive:
|Appel, apple||Token, token||Vinger, finger|
|Tempel, temple||Wäpen, weapon||Hunger, hunger|
|Voken, treachery||Çhaster, city||Wunder, marvel, etc.|
Loss of consonants
- Loss of medial h. When a final h/ch becomes medial in inflection, it is dropped. (a) If between liquid and vowel, there is compensatory lengthening of the preceding vowel: e.g. Walch, foreigner, Welshman, gen. Wäles, pl. Wäles. (b) if between vowel and vowel, contractrion results: e.g. Schuh, shoe, pl. Schuus; Veeh, money, gen. Vies.
- Simplification of final double consonant. The simplification of a double final consonant is usual in Angle-Saxish compounds. Thus we have Spelstow, place where announcements are made, from Spell + Stow.