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zompist bboard • View topic - The Great Proto-Indo-European Thread

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 1:51 am 
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 2:57 am 
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 3:40 am 
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 6:41 am 
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I've read it. To sum up:
- PIE originally had just two series of stops: voiceless and voiced
- The voiced series had the allophones [B, D, G] and [b, d, g].
- The allophonic voiced stops became phonemic voiced aspirated stops.
- /B/ merged with /w/ (He claims that evidence of this is shown by the unusually high number of roots that start with *w, which were formerly *b before merging.). /D/ and /G/ had nothing to merge with, and simply hardened to become phonemic /d/ and /g/.
- He argues that the occurrence of Grassman's Law in both Greek and Sanskrit shows that it was originally a PIE thing, not a separate and identical innovation.

My thoughts/concerns:
- I haven't seen any frequency data for PIE phonemes. I would very much like to.
- With only 2 series of stops, that gives 2*2=4 types of CVC root forms. After the phonemicization, that gives 3*3=9 types, 3 of which are illegal. He doesn't say why roots of the form *deg became *dhegh, and why *teg and *dek didn't become *tegh and *dhek. As for why/how *degh and *dheg appear at all, he says they ""occur under highly constrained conditions, and are shown by Grassman (1863/1967) to be secondary developments of *dhegh."" What exactly these conditions are, he doesn't say. (Again, this is the important part, and really shouldn't be left out...)
- He doesn't mention *kw and *gw at all; I assume he thinks that they were just allophones of *k and *g.
- I'm not sure why he thinks Celtic fits into "group C" when PCelt had the *gw->*b and *gwh->*gw shift.
- Ditto for Balto-Slavic with Winter's Law.

Afterthoughts:
- I really want to see some frequency data (that also notes phoneme position in the root). Are the root forms *degh and *dheg really so rare? If they are, I haven't noticed it.
-- I could write a program to do this, but I don't think I want to make this in an excel spreadsheet, which will mean it's a little less portable when I'd share it.
-- Writing the dictionary of roots would be long and tedious, but necessary to get an fair view of the frequency. Also, I'd have to go through multiple dictionaries to get all the roots. (I'm eager for Lubotsky's Pokorny 2.0 project to be finished in a couple years so they'd all be compiled in a single dictionary.)


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 10:31 am 
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There's always morrigan's one. It's got a lot of problems (uses more than one notation system, repeats roots, some entries lack info, some entries seem dubious), but it's the best thing I've seen (which is ridiculous, frankly - some conlanger on the internet should NOT be able to produce the best resource for the vocabulary of the mother-language of half the globe).

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 10:38 am 
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 2:22 pm 
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 3:30 pm 
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 4:26 pm 
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Το̨ ανθροπς αυ̨τ εκψον επ αθο̨ οραναμο̨ϝον.
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 4:55 pm 
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 5:25 pm 
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Excuse me, my device had an epileptic fit. What I was going to say was that there's something to be said for amateurs who are curious having more incentive (a hunger for knowledge) than professional linguists (money, probably) to do any sort of work. I certainly would work on PIE reconstruction myself if I had the basic knowledge to start with.

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Ο ορανς τα ανα̨ριθομον ϝερρον εͱεν ανθροποτροφον.
Το̨ ανθροπς αυ̨τ εκψον επ αθο̨ οραναμο̨ϝον.
Θαιν. Θαιν. Θαιν. Θαιν. Θαιν. Θαιν. Θαιν.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 5:53 pm 
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 6:44 pm 
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 7:23 pm 
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Ο ορανς τα ανα̨ριθομον ϝερρον εͱεν ανθροποτροφον.
Το̨ ανθροπς αυ̨τ εκψον επ αθο̨ οραναμο̨ϝον.
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 7:24 pm 
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 10:15 pm 
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 1:51 am 
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which clusters proved to be surprisingly stable, surviving into english until... what, 1600? and aren't there still some dialects without the rap-wrap merger?

it's too bad the (AFAIK and I'm probably wrong) only wl- word to survive into even middle english underwent metathesis to break up the cluster and then died out

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