This book provides ''a comprehensive and comparative introduction to the standardization processes of the Germanic languages''; it thus presents an exercise in ''comparative standardology'' (p. 1). The editors of the present volume, Ana Deumert (Monash University, Melbourne) and Wim Vandenbussche (Vrije Universiteit Brussel/FWO-Vlaanderen), have brought together sixteen contributions on Germanic languages and varieties: twelve articles on the various Germanic standard languages, plus articles on Low German, Scots and Pacific and Caribbean Germanic Creole languages, written by authoritative scholars of the respective languages and varieties. The sixteen chapters are framed by an introduction and a postscript by the two editors. The initiative for the present book was taken at the 2002 standardization conference in Sheffield. All contributors took Einar Haugen's four-step model of standardization as a starting point for the portrayals of individual standardization histories, i. e. ''norm selection -- norm codification -- norm implementation -- norm elaboration'' (Haugen 1966) or ''selection -- codification -- elaboration -- acceptance'' (Haugen 1972) respectively.