Questions tagged [proto-indo-european]

Proto-Indo-European (PIE), the reconstructed proto-language for the Indo-European language family

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Was there a tendency of Indo-European languages to avoid syntactical ambiguity by introducing more complex morphology?

In (Peškovskij, 1914, p. 246) I stumbled upon the following (Russian) assertion: Opisannoe vytesnenie predikativnogo imenitel'nogo tvoritel'nym možno rassmatrivat' kak častnyj slučaj obščego ...
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What were the pronunciations of PIE velar stops?

What might be the pronunciations of PIE "plain velar" series *k *g *gʰ, the "palatovelar" series *ḱ *ǵ *ǵʰ, and the "labiovelar" series *kʷ *gʷ *gʷʰ ? Was the *gʰ same as ...
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questions regarding satemisation in sanskrit

I have some questions regarding satemisation in sanskrit. why there are still k in sanskrit if pie k tunred into sanskrit s ? It seems to me that pie *kʷ turned into k in sanskrit. is that right ? If ...
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Was so-called “early PIE” a single language without dialects or a wide continuum of dialects?

Was so-called “early PIE” a single language without dialects or a wide continuum of dialects? If it was a dialect continuum, then probably when did the “common” PIE split up into dialects?
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91 views

When did the vocalic allophones of the consonant phonemes in PIE become independent vowel phonemes?

The sonants in PIE have consonantal and vocalic allophones, so the consonantal sonant and the vocalic sonant are regarded as one consonant phoneme. But many daughter languages of PIE (at least at some ...
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169 views

Did h2 and h3 change the phonetic reality of an adjacent *e in PIE under any circumstances?

Did h2 and h3 change the phonetic reality of an adjacent *e in PIE under any circumstances? Can we treat *a and ā as allophones of *e in PIE?
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96 views

How likely is a close connection between Northwest Caucasian languages and Proto-Indo-European?

How likely is a "Pontic" language family linking languages from Northwestern Caucasus with Proto-Indo-European? The Yamnaya people had a lot of Caucasus ancestry, could some tribe from the ...
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57 views

Is Proto-Balto-Slavic zero-grade from long zero-grade i? [closed]

Is Proto-Balto-Slavic zero-grade from long zero-grade i pílˀnas wilkás źírˀna śírˀnāˀ Is Proto-Germanic zero-grade from long zero-grade u fullaz wulfaz kurną hurną
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107 views

Indo-European cognate calculator

There are Indo-European cognate pairs that are phonetically exact and regular in the sense that their phonematic make-up is completely explained by systematic application of the relevant sound rules ...
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89 views

Did Proto-Indo-European have retracted /s̠/?

Was the /s/ in PIE retracted (/s̠/) as in modern Greek, standard European Spanish and most likely ancient Greek and Latin, or was it pronounced as in modern English?
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121 views

Are infinitives in descendant languages and 3rd-preson singular forms of verbs in PIE related?

For example, why is it shown in Wiktionary that the etymology of such words like eat, есть (which means eat in Russian)comes from 3-rd person singular form *h₁édti in PIE? Are they really related or I ...
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172 views

What is the difference in usage of the word “root” in PIE and its daughter languages?

Now I understand that the conceptions of "root" in PIE and its descendant languages don't fully overlap. However what is the exact difference between them? What confuses me is the ...
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101 views

paradox of PIE nomenclatur

It is generally accepted that traditional Proto-Indo-European reconstructs late PIE to the exclusion of Anatolian, whether intentionally or not. We may call this PIE for simplicities sake. Some ...
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105 views

pronunciation of word origins [closed]

there are many sources for indo-europian languages' etymology but I don't know where to find one which shows the pronunciation of the word's origins. for example, I can't understand how the given ...
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Reconstruction of PIE consonants

So, I have a question about the reconstruction of PIE consonants. According to the Etymological Dictionaries, the words "rape" and "raven" have the same PIE root *ker- however how ...
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561 views

What was Anatolian language during the Neolithic era according to Kurgan hypothesis proponents?

The Anatolian hypothesis asserts that people in Anatolia spoke Proto-Indo-European during the Neolithic era and that the language spread from there starting in 7000 BCE. On the other hand, the Kurgan ...
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Proto-Indo-European and Proto-Yeniseian paper

I'm an amateur linguist and recently wrote a paper called "The relationship between Proto-Indo-European and Proto-Yeniseian" which mostly comprises a short history of the Yeniseian language ...
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126 views

Can the PIE roots with similar meaning and difference in gʷ/w and gʷʰ/w in fact be related?

For instance, I wonder whether roots *gʷʰér- "burn, heat" and *wer- "burn, heat" are related, as well as *gʷer- "mountain, height" and *wers- "mountain, height"....
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What's the reconstruction of the word for fire in proto-Australian?

The word for fire in some modern Australian languages: Tiwi yikwani Djinang junggi Maung yungku Walmajarri yakun This is strikingly similar to that in PIE: PIE h₁...
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129 views

Are proto-languages necessary to divide languages ​within a family into groups?

For example, Indo-European family is divided into groups, such as Slavic, Romance, Germanic, etc. Some of these groups can also be divided, but let`s just assume, that there is no further division. ...
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Is Proto-Uralic piŋз “hand, palm” related to PIE pn̥kʷstis “fist”, pénkʷe “five”?

There was Proto-Uralic piŋз "hand, palm": https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/pivo#Etymology_2 I wonder whether it was related to the PIE words.
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Did Proto-Indo-European put the adjective before or behind the noun?

Did PIE put the adjective behind the noun (like Romance languages usually do) or before the noun (like Germanic languages)?
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Are PIE *suHnús “son” and *snusós “daughter-in-law” related?

One of the Proto-Indo-European words for "son" appears to have been *suHnús (Skt. sūnú-, Goth. sunus, etc.). The word for "daughter-in-law" is reconstructed as *snusós (Lat. nurus, ...
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Etymology of latin suffix -idus

What is the (probably Indo-European) origin of the latin suffix -idus, as in "acidus"? Are there any known cognates?
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Are Russian words пять (five), пясть (fist), пятка (heel) related? What about English “fist”?

I wonder whether the PIE word for five in fact meant "fist", in other words, when people counted, they closed their fingers and when they obtained the closed fist, it was "five"? ...
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What are the descendants of the PIE suffix “-n̥kʷos” in the Czech language if there are any?

Me and my friend would like to know whether there is any PIE suffix "-n̥kʷos" descendats in the czech language, we feel like "-uha" in "ostruha" could be it, in other ...
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Is there evidence for expletives (ie. dummy subjects) in Proto-Germanic? What can we say about the situation in IE?

I am aware that obligatory expletives did not exist in early ON and perhaps also not in early OHG, but my knowledge of the specifics is hazy. In OE at least, I believe expletives in conjunction with ...
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139 views

What can limit the plausibility of the Arabic “š-k-l”(ش ك ل) being in the same lineage as the German “gestalt” via its assumed PIE ancestor “*stel”?

They have near-fully overlapping meanings (I would be going out on a limb to say fully equivalent translations) with both the Arabic and German words having their primary use in expressing the meaning ...
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Why is reconstructed PIE so typologically unusual?

I'm probably not the first to notice that a large number of features of reconstruct Proto-Indo-European are typological irregularities. The most famous of these probably being the voiceless/voiced/...
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Popular book(s) recommendation for start learning Linguistics keeping an interest in the Indus Valley script in mind

Recently, I have gathered enough interest in the subject Linguistics. As I came to know that Indus Valley scripts are among the last remaining undeciphered scripts of the ancient world, I gained more ...
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Is there any reflex of initial *h₁?

It's commonly posited that all PIE roots consist of two groups of consonants, neither of which can be empty. For example, the root *h₁ed- has the groups *h₁ and *d. However, I'm not aware of any ...
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101 views

Why are Proto-Germanic *taikijaną and Proto-Indo-European *deyḱ- cognate?

Why are Proto-Germanic *taikijaną and Proto-Indo-European *deyḱ- cognate? I don't understand why are PGmc k and Proto-Indo-European ḱ cognate?
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Are dative governing verbs in IE languages mainly inherited from PIE, or later developed within each IE language?

Some typical dative governing verbs in many IE case-inflecting languages are "help", "give" etc.. Are they mainly inherited from PIE or are they developed within each language? If ...
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190 views

Etymology of ぐるぐる

Since it's written in Hiragana, I presume it is likely not a recent loan word. However, its pronounciation bears resemblance to "軲轆", a Mandarin word meaning wheel--similar to ぐるぐる's meaning ...
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125 views

Swadesh list for proto indo-european and coefficient of relatedness

Given two Swadesh lists of two languages, we can calculate a "coefficient of relatedness" by counting the proportion of cognades. Given two languages, L1 and L2, let's call C(L1,L2) to this ...
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Why does PIE have form *dʰwey- / *dʰew- / dʰeubʰ- without initial (s)?

Why does Proto-Indo-European have form *dʰwey- / *dʰew- / dʰeubʰ- (I don't know which is correct) despite of the fact that Proto-Germanic has "s mobile" (compare English steam)? Is it OK that Proto-...
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Why does Proto-Balto-Slavic have form *aśís?

Why does Proto-Balto-Slavic have form *aśís (with one s in the stem)? despite of the fact that Old Prussian has word assis (compare PIE *h₂eḱs-i-s)?
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What underlying semantic notions connect 'campus' to the PIE root *kam-p- (to bend)?

Univ. Texas's page on kam-p-   'to bend' states: 'Semantic Field: to Bend'. Then I saw campus (plain, campus, open field) listed, but what semantic notions underlie it and 'to bend'? I can ...
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Sound laws in Balto-Slavic and Slavic changes

What are the regular sound laws that explain the modern form of the words in baltic and slavic languages? I am aware of the centum/satem separation, which already helps to identify a lot of cognates ...
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204 views

Given that so many Indo-European peoples called themselves “Veneti” or the like, can we conclude that it was the endonym of PIE people as well?

For instance: Veneti (Gaul) - Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Veneti_(Gaul)) Vistula Veneti - Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vistula_Veneti) Adriatic Veneti - Wikipedia (https://...
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Proto-Indo-European *nepōts cognate in Old English

From Proto-Indo-European word *nepōts (Latin nepos, Sanskrit napāt) I need to determine what is its cognate in Old English. More precisely, I need to determine whether the result is nefa (Grimm's Law) ...
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138 views

Did Proto-Indo-Europeans whisper? [closed]

I saw that Proto Indo Europeans had a word for whispering *(kweys). Did they whisper to each other like people do now? And, did we learn whispering from Proto Indo Europeans?
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395 views

What's the relationship between Old English and Germanic?

I read a line in the book "The Germanic vocabulary of Old English has not survived particularly well into the current period". This really confused me a lot. Isn't English a branch of Germanic ...
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What is the relationship of Proto-Indo-European, Indo-European, Proto-Germanic and Germanic?

I know that Indo-European is the name of a family of languages that includes nearly all the major tongues of Europe and several outside Europe, such as Persian and Hindi. Germanic is a sub-category of ...
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226 views

Aura, Aurum, Aurora & *h₂ews-

Good morning, I am a scholar from a different field, trying to gain insight into the etymological connection between aura and aurum (air and gold). How do they relate? I have found a connection ...
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Etymology of some Romance languages' verbs meaning “to sleep”

Portuguese, Spanish and French dormir, Italian dormire etc. come from the Latin verb dormīo. Wiktionary's entry says that its etymology is: From Latin dormīre, present active infinitive of dormiō, ...
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Why are the orthographies of Ancient/Proto Languages so Impractical?

For example: In the Romanization of Sumerian, /ŋ/ is written as ⟨g̃⟩ or ⟨ĝ⟩ instead of ⟨ng⟩ or even ⟨ŋ⟩. Also in Sumerian /t͡sʰ/ is written ⟨ř⟩ or ⟨dr⟩. The list goes on with Sumerian. In Proto-Indo-...
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Why does it seem that all Proto-Germanic words have PIE roots?

In Latin, there are words from Etruscan and unknown sources. In Proto-Germanic, pretty much all words are from Proto-Indo-European. Why is that? Are the Proto-Germanic peoples and language very ...
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260 views

Can we make a case for Eurasiatic numerals for one and two?

There is a widespread Eurasiatic theory that puts all these families (except PIE) into one group, the case for common numerals for one and two seems more plausible. I also add Chukchi-Kamchadal family ...
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320 views

Proto-Indo-European words for moon? [closed]

There are two words for moon in Proto-Indo-European, *lówksneh (cognate with 'lunar'), and *méhns (cognate with 'moon' and 'month'). I think that *lówksneh means "a shining moon" and is more common, ...

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