I have heard this claim stated with confidence, but it's difficult to see how it could be deduced from traditional reconstruction. Same question for ancient Greek.

  • 1
    Along the lines, PIE was not a unite language. It well may be that some territories spoke tonal or tone-aspected "accent" of what we call "PIE". Jan 11, 2014 at 14:27
  • 6
    Ancient Greek wasn't a tone language, but a pitch accent language; likewise Vedic Sanskrit. On the basis of these languages, plus additional evidence from other branches (e.g. Balto-Slavic), PIE is reconstructed as a pitch-accent language.
    – TKR
    Jan 11, 2014 at 23:49
  • I approve of TKR's comment, but I do not approve of the linked wikipedia article. By including Korean and Shanghaiese the article has blurred the distinction between pitch accent and tone.
    – fdb
    Jan 13, 2014 at 17:08
  • @TKR true but can we treat pitch-accent as a weaker form of tonal? I mean there are still tones.
    – shabunc
    May 27, 2017 at 12:41


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge that you have read and understand our privacy policy and code of conduct.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.