Historical Romance Dialect...Your Opinions?

Following a comment I received on Dana of the Whispering Wood, I would like to know you're opinions on the "historical romance dialect," specifically the medieval version. You know the one I'm talking about. We've all read it. When it's done well, I even enjoy it.

The comment I got was basically that I wasn't using historically accurate words. Well the book is set in 12th century Ireland so they weren't speaking English at all. I suppose I could have written it in Gaelic, but goodness gracious, who would have understood it then?

I did, in fact, contemplate using this standard "medieval" dialect that I've so often read. In the first version of Dana I even used it. I came to the conclusion, however, that it seems for the most part too forced. I'd much rather have my characters seem more modern and human. I think often this dialect strips their humanity away by making them seem more like caricatures of a medieval historical heroine than a person for themselves.

But don't get me wrong! I'm not dissing people who write in this dialect. As I said, I do enjoy it. I just don't think it's right for me and my characters.

So what do you think? Yae or nay? Forsooth, I'd love to know your opinions! :-D

Oh, and just to be clear. I really do appreciate the time the person went to to make this and the other comments I received. I just don't agree with this particular one.


Anonymous said…
I find I usually enjoy the story more if I am not distracted by forced historically accurate terminology, in my opinion. Although I do want to learn Gaelic, I bought the tape and everything, but argh its hard.
Anonymous said…
I don't like have to read a book with a dictionary (or the internet) beside me to figure out what those words are! I love Dana just the way it is, ok, the way you changed it to, hehe.
Anonymous said…
I'm another for not having accurate medieval language. I can't generate sparky dialogue with it, lol

I try to keep out anachronisms (which I can never spell) ie I read a *Roman* short story where one character said of another that he had a 'poker face'... about two thousand years before the game was invented, lol

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