Ana Deumert has convincingly argued that the internal history of Afrikaans had often been judged too
simplistically. It is not likely that Standard Afrikaans was based on any single dialect. From the end
of the nineteenth up to the early twentieth century Standard Afrikaans was deliberately constructed
on the basis of a continuous spectrum of variation ranging from metropolitan Dutch and its marilectal
and acrolectal varieties to the mesolects and basilects at the bottom of the variety continuum. Based on
a collection of handwritten sermons in Afrikaans of my grandfather from between 1907 and 1940 I
shall argue that Deumert’s hypothesis of Standard Afrikaans being the result of a deliberate process of
construction continuing until the early twentieth century is strongly supported.