chapter  7
21 Pages

## Language Change

The previous chapters established the principles of variationist analysis and variation at different levels of the linguistic system. Especially important among these principles is the definition of the variable context, since this determines how we calculate relative frequency of occurrence. However, we are not only concerned with overall relative frequencies but also with the conditioning of the variation by language-internal factors. We can use the hierarchy of linguistic conditioning to infer the variable linguistic system.