Questions tagged [proto-indo-european]

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

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Investigating possible etymological connections between Proto-Semitic and Proto-Indo-European words related to light

So I was looking at two Levantine Arabic words, "ضو" (daw) and "نور" (nur), both stemming from Proto-Semitic roots ⁧ض و ء⁩ (ḍ-w-ʔ) and ن و ر⁩ (n-w-r) respectively; and I'm curious ...
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Why does PIE *sneygʷʰ- ("snow") give L. nix, Gk. νίφα (acc.)?

What happens to internal /e/ and semivowel /y/ in *snéygʷʰm̥ to yield L. nix? I have no clue how that vowel change works.
fruitcheesy's user avatar
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Why does PIE *ǵn̥h₁tós yield Latin nātus?

I'm an undergraduate classicist doing a PIE paper! It's absolutely fascinating, but I'm still getting there with my understanding, so apologies if my questions are a bit silly! I have been looking at ...
fruitcheesy's user avatar
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Is the Hungarian word "pirít" (to burn) a borrowing from Indo-European word for fire (*peh2wr)?

I am wondering, is it possible that the Hungarian word pirít ‘to burn’ is a relatively-recent borrowing from an Indo-European language, from *peh₂wr- ‘fire’? Obviously, it would have to happen after ...
FlatAssembler's user avatar
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Is there any evidence that the modern word for "bear" is an euphemism which replaced the original taboo word?

I have read and heard many times the old linguistic story about the modern word for "bear": Slavic: medvěd, niedźwiedź, ведмідь, ... "honey-eater" Germanic: bär, bear, björn, ... &...
Honza Zidek's user avatar
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What is Double Zero Grade?

The double zero grade *ǵʰi-m- is preserved in the compounds with numerals. (de Vaan, Etymological Dictionary of Latin 2013: hiems) E.g. *dwi-ǵʰim-os “two years old”, literally “of two winters” (en....
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Pronunciation of ‘hₐ’ in PIE

I have tried to find the sound hₐ-, for example "hₐeust(e)ro" engl. 'east', or hₐel, 'burn' , but also example hₐner, 'man' pronunciation, but I can't find it anywhere on the internet, ...
Eliel's user avatar
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Was Old Church Slavonic more Greek/Thracian then actually Slavic and can Proto-Slavic be considered a languge from Indo-European family?

First of all, thank you for reading this question. While checking some proposed restorations of Indo-European words, I noticed that for Slavic words the Old Church Slavonic is used. I've searched some ...
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What recent (since 2014) work is there on the origin of the Indo-European 1st person singular nominative ego (etc.)?

I have an article by Hamp from 2011 and one by Blažek from 2014, but need to know if there is anything more recent, so I can cite it in an article that needs to be finished yesterday.
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List of PIE words for occupations

What are the known reconstructions of PIE words for occupations? I composed some, but want a greater list: *h₃rḗǵ-s - king *dúk-s - military leader, commander *u̯iḱ-pót-i-s - village leader *pr̥h₂-wó-...
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Have there been attempts in making artificial alphabets for the Indo-European languages?

As far as I know linguists came to conclusion that most of the modern alphabets initially derived from the Phoenician Alphabet, which belongs to the Semitic branch of the Afroasiatic family of ...
Ilya Lakhin's user avatar
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Phonotactic Parallels to Pyysalo's Laryngeal and Schwa

Jouna Pyysalo has a rather unique reconstruction of Proto-Indo-European, that he calls System PIE (documented here, amongst other places) and describes as a new form of monolaryngealism. This ...
Tristan's user avatar
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In PIE, what was the function of the suffix *-(ō)l?

For example, in the word: *H₃nóbʰ-ōl / *H₃ómbʰ-l̥ "navel" (Wiktionary: Reconstruction:Proto-Indo-European/h₃nóbʰōl)
Corn Boy's user avatar
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Could it be that the pronoun *eǵh₂om ("I") in PIE is not an innovation?

I think, it is generally believed that the word for "I" in PIE was an innovation and in more ancient branches the 1st person singular pronoun was similar to the plural one, "min/men&...
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Words for tongue in Tungusic

In Tungusic there are attested the following words for tongue: Manchu: ilenggu Nanai: siŋmu Evenki: inni, čoli Wikitionary postulates that the words ilenggu, siŋmu and inni are related and gives ...
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How can a language-learner determine the root, prefix, and suffix of a word in English, if they know its language of origin?

Many English vocabulary-building books (for example, Merriam-Webster Vocabulary Builder, Word Power Made Easy) break the meaning of words down into three pieces: prefix + root + suffix. On the website ...
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Questions about clusters of two dental stops in PIE

Beekes says a sibilant was inserted between two dental stops in PIE, therefore *-tt-, *-dt- > *-tst- and *-d(h)d(h)- > *-d(h)zd(h)- and the cluster is "retained as such in Hittite." ...
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Did Proto-Sino-Tibetan and Proto-Indo-European languages have the same origin?

Did Proto-Sino-Tibetan and Proto-Indo-European languages have the same origin? Did human develop a common language before migrated from Africa, and were most if not all the modern languages ...
Tim's user avatar
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Are PIE *bal and *welH- related?

Has anyone compared eg. Bhumibol - title of Thailand's monarch, derived from Sanskrit - and oblast - a Slavic noun related to rule and governance, vb. *voldati "to rule, to reign, to govern"?...
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Can these similarities between PIE and Burushaski be explained?

We have: English PIE Burushaski brown bʰerH-om baard-um tongue dn̥ǵʰwéh₂s juŋus warm gʷʰer-om gar-um pair kʷeth₂ kaat fire péh₂wr̥ pʰu ...
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Simplicity of the verb in Germanic languages

English and German have only two tenses (the present and the past) that are formed by inflection, all the others are formed using helping verbs, as is the conditional mood. In the Romance languages ...
Neandertal's user avatar
6 votes
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If the Armenian word for "foot", "otn", really comes from PIE *podm, why did the 'p' disappear?

If the Armenian word for "foot", "otn", really comes from PIE *podm, why did the 'p' disappear? Why didn't it change into 'h', like in "hing" (five, from *penkwe) or &...
FlatAssembler's user avatar
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Besides Indo-Pacific and Australian languages does anywhere "firewood" semantically develop to "fire"?

It is known that in Australian languages the word for "tree" developed into "firewood" and then to "fire". I wonder if this development typical? Particularly, could PIE *...
Anixx's user avatar
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3 votes
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Proto-Indo-European transcription: <u̯, i̯> vs. <w, j> & <k̑> vs. <ḱ>, etc

I’m working through a language book that uses an idiosyncratic (& confusing) transcription, so as I go I’m making my own copy with more standard symbols. I’ve just got to a section referencing PIE ...
Moilleadóir's user avatar
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How Did the Palatovelar /*ḱ/ Consonant in PIE Become a Sibilant in Satem Languages?

In Indo-Iranian and Balto-Slavic languages (which are conveniently all Satem languages), there is a sibilant or affricate sound in places where Centum languages usually have a velar consonant. It ...
Топор Перуна's user avatar
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1 answer
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What happened to Aham and its derivatives in Marathi?

The Sanskrit first person pronoun अहम् (Romanized: Aham) can be found in Maharashtri Prakrit as 𑀅𑀳𑀁 (ahaṃ), 𑀅𑀳𑀅𑀁 (ahaaṃ), 𑀳𑀁 (haṃ). It is even present in some languages derivative of ...
Mr Jangoon's user avatar
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proto-Indo-European root for the modern 'comma' and for 'hatchet'

I am told the proto-Indo-European root for the modern 'comma' is 'kop', and that is the root for 'hatchet' or 'axe' as well. True?
The ClearVoice's user avatar
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Why is Ural-Altaic controversial, but Indo-European isn't?

There is no direct record of Proto-Indo-European and there's barely any non-hypothetical evidence of Proto-Indo-Europeans. Why is Indo-European considered a language family while Ural-Altaic isn't, ...
Backstauber's user avatar
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Is PIE weyh₁ (to hunt, persecute) somehow related to PIE weyk (to separate, to select for sacrifice)

I am amateurishly passionate about etymologies (especially of my native Romanian) but more seriously interested in the anthropological theories of René Girard and Walter Burkert, which both ...
cipricus's user avatar
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Common origin of PIE feminine and collective plural and semantic implications

It is generally believed that the neuter nominative-accusative plural and feminine singular in PIE both originate in a common *-h2 suffix which originally marked collective, although recent works tend ...
Erithacus Rubecula's user avatar
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Can you provide a cheat-sheet for turning Proto-Indo-European dictionaries from the older style into laryngeal notation?

Much of the resources I have for Proto-Indo-European itself (not etymological dictionaries for other languages) either use Laryngeal notation but are limited in scope (like Wiktionary) or are written ...
Oron61's user avatar
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Have I actually found something or is this just a 100+ coincidence cognates? indo-european, sino-tibetan, austroneisian, japanese, korean

I like comparing languages on my free time and found that Eurasian languages have a lot in common and I couldn't quite place my finger on it but the languages just seemed similar. One time I compared ...
that touhou nerd's user avatar
3 votes
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Why does Proto-Indo-Aryan *ẓ seem to have different outcomes despite sharing the same phonological context?

It is well known that Proto-Indo-Aryan *s had an allophone *z in voiced contexts. Due to some phonetic changes (i.e. RUKI law and the shift *śt > ṣṭ), they both could undergo retroflexion, thus ...
Tochtli's user avatar
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Apparent sound crespondences between Eurasian, Trans-New-Guinean, Pama-Nyungan and Burushaski

It seems to me that there can be regular sound correspondences between Eurasian, Trans-New-Guinean, Pama-Nyungan and Burushaski. I would call the hypthetical proto-language of these "proto-mitian&...
Anixx's user avatar
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If Hebrew is not related to Slavic, why are there apparent sound correspondences?

We have Hebrew: šeš; Russian: šestʹ; Ukrainian: šistʹ; Latin: six; English: six; Hebrew: yeš; Russian: yestʹ; Ukrainian: ye, isnuye; Latin: est; English: is; Hebrew: ze; Russian: se; Ukrainian: сe [...
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15 votes
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Derivation of the Indo-European lemma *bʰréh₂tēr ‘brother’

According to Wiktionary, the word “brother” is traced back to the reconstructed Indo-European lemma *bʰréh₂tēr with the same meaning. It seems to be structurally similar to other kinship terms, such ...
Lypyrhythm's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
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Limits of historical linguistic reconstruction

It is a well-known and widely repeated fact that the linguistic reconstruction associated with the comparative method is no longer effective for large temporal depths (informally estimated to be ...
Davius's user avatar
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Why does PIE *weydtos give PGmc wīsaz not wīssaz?

Why does PIE *weydtos give PGmc wīsaz not wīssaz? compare Pgmc *stassiz, *gawissiz, *kwissiz
John's user avatar
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Why does Proto-Slavic first-person singular present form have nasalized o-sound?

Why does Proto-Slavic first-person singular present form have nasalized o-sound (ǫ) while PIE have longed o-sound?
John's user avatar
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Which PIE participle corresponds to PGmc past participle?

Which PIE participle (active/middle/passive voice) corresponds to PGmc past participle?
John's user avatar
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Are "brat" and "frater" cognates?

Both the Slavic brat (Брат) and the Latin frater mean brother. Are they cognates? Or is their phonetic "proximity" a red herring? Related: How were “bratrъ/bratъ” and “sestra” formed in ...
Rodrigo de Azevedo's user avatar
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Are "comma" names in IE languages somehow related with yarn?

The Russian name of "comma" is "запятая zapjatája" which is cognate to english "to spin"(a yarn) The Russian name of "full stop" is "точка tóčka" ...
Peter's user avatar
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Why Does PGmc *smalaz (from PIE *(s)mal-) have "a" (not "o")?

Why Does PGmc *smalaz (from PIE *(s)mal-) have "a" (not "o")?
Фёдор Любов's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
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Were Iranian languages originally separated and more related to Slavic?

Iranian languages and Slavic languages have some similarities, such as the merger of aspirated sounds into unaspirated sounds, and the development of the consonant /z/. Historically, the settlements ...
Fatyanovo2022's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
155 views

Latin -vus/-uus and PIE -wos

What is the Proto-Indo-European reconstruction, if there is one, of the Latin suffixes -tivus (many examples) and -vus/-uus/-ivus (arvus, residuus, cadivus)? I read in a non-reliable source once that ...
user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
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Phonological Development from PIE to Greek

I found the following phonological development (from PIE to Greek) patterns very interesting. *kw>t / __ {e, i} (e.g., *penkwe- > πέντε) *gw>d / __ e (*gwelbhu- > δελψύς) *gwh>th / ...
Chickly's user avatar
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What language branch of PIE does Kartvelian belong to? (Georgian language)

I know little about language, so I would like to preface that this question may appear disjointed. I have been listening to some wonderful Georgian folk music and have been trying to relate it to any ...
tab_philomath's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
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Is there a question about the number of cases in Proto-Indo-European?

I've found this quote in what appears to be the Usenet sci.lang FAQ page: Earlier historical linguists cheerfully reconstructed eight cases for PIE, on the model of Sanskrit; but the IE languages ...
zale's user avatar
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Besides Proto-Indoeuropean, what would be the list of the 10 most acurately reconstructed Proto-languages?

Proto-Indoeuropean language (p-IE) has been the subject of study for more than 200 years, and a great deal of work has been published has been written about p-IE reconstruction. In addition, there are ...
Davius's user avatar
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Is there a reason germanic languages are more different from other PIE languages?

I apoligize that this question is not very formalized. Maybe the assumption in the question is wrong. I am asking because looking at latin, greek and sanskrit, these languages seem quite similar to ...
hmmmmmmm's user avatar
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