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I know I'm a little late, but I do a similar thing you do and would like to contribute. I'm not a professional *Proto-IndoEuropeanist, but am a philologist and I actually do the same thing you do of using etymology to memorize vocabulary. To your specific question about definite reconstructions, user fdb is absolutely correct that there is no unanimity among ...


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The development is the result of: syncope of *-gros to *-grs (with syllabic r, sometimes transcribed as *r̥ following a non-IPA convention). In Latin, the Proto-Italic sequences *-ros, *-ris often show syncope of the vowel after *r, with the r becoming syllabic when preceded by a consonant (as in caper) but not when preceded by a vowel (as in vir, vesper). ...


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Note that Latin ager inflects as agri, agro, agrum, agro (in the singular), so the transformation of the ending is specific to the nominative singular. It is a regular development of Latin, that *Crus becomes Cer.


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Most sound changes don't have specific names. A relevant point of comparison here is puer < *ph₂weros. This suggests that the masculine nominative singular thematic ending -os (as well as the vocative -e) was lost first, suggesting an intermediate form *agr which violates Latin phonotactics and so required the insertion of a vowel to make it legal. In ...


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The first thing you need to realise is that there is no unanimity about proto-IE. Robert Beekes is the patriarch of the “Leiden school”, which operates notably with the hypothesis that PIE had three laryngeals and that no PIE word begins with a vowel. The admirable “Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series” applies these principles to various ...


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