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This volume is concerned with assessing fictional and non-fictional written texts as linguistic evidence for earlier forms of varieties of English. These range from Scotland to New Zealand, from Canada to South Africa, covering all the major forms of the English language around the world. The question of how genuine written representations are is a central theme as well as the techniques and methodology which can be employed to determine this genuineness. The focus is on vernacular styles found in written documents and hence with using these as a window on earlier spoken modes for the varieties in question. Studies of language in literature which were offered in the past have been revisited and their findings reassessed in the light of recent advances in variationist linguistics.