17 votes

Why does Russian not vary from region to region?

First of all, it varies to some extent. People from Ural region, people from Rostov-on-Don, people from Vyatka region have quite recognisable pronunciation norms. The same with vocabulary, there's ...
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  • 907
17 votes
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Do the Belarusians understand the Ukrainian language better than Russians do?

When it goes for speaking/understanding Slavic languages, most Russians know only Russian and have practically never been exposed to other Slavic languages, especially spoken ones, while most ...
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  • 15.7k
14 votes

What language branch of PIE does Kartvelian belong to? (Georgian language)

Kartvelian is not part of Indo-European, and in fact is not known to be related to any other language family. Some linguists have connected it with IE as part of a proposed larger family called ...
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  • 10.5k
11 votes

Can Old Church Slavonic be considered an artificial language?

Yes, Old Church Slavonic (OCS) was an artificial language, but just in a way. Firstly, in the 9th century, when Cyrill and Methodius devised the OCS, all the Slavic languages and dialects were so ...
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  • 15.7k
10 votes
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Where does the letter <j> come from to Slavic Cyrillic alphabets?

The letter <j> is really used in some Cyrillic-based alphabets, all of them were once created either by a certain person or by a group of people, that is, these alphabets aren't a product of ...
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  • 15.7k
10 votes

Why are some Russian and Swedish words so strikingly similar? Два - två, по-шведски - på svenska, etc

You've mixed a bunch of words of very different origin with a bunch of quite weak and poorly defined assumptions (like no considerable interactions between Russians and Swedes). It comes as no ...
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  • 907
10 votes
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Using Polish-inspired z Digraphs for Czech, Slovak

No, it is not acceptable and it is never done. It used to be done before the changes that appeared gradually in the 15th century, inspired by a paper most likely written by Jan Hus around 1400. Before ...
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10 votes

What language branch of PIE does Kartvelian belong to? (Georgian language)

Kartvelian is not only not demonstrably related (note: this is absence of evidence, not evidence of absence) to Indogermanic, but also on the same level unrelated to other Kaukasian language families ...
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9 votes
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How are Baltic and Slavic languages related?

If you look at the aspect system of Baltic and Slavonic languages, Baltic systems actually resemble the earlier stages of Slavonic systems (Comrie, 1976). In Lithuanian, adding a prefix to a verb root ...
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9 votes
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The meaning of /ě/ (ѣ)

Nothing specific. When linguists started working with Old Church Slavonic, they weren't sure exactly how the yat was pronounced (since it had shifted in different directions in different daughter ...
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  • 51.9k
9 votes

Why are some Russian and Swedish words so strikingly similar? Два - två, по-шведски - på svenska, etc

@shabunc has treated the other examples already, so I will say something about the bear's service: The same idiom is also present in German Bärendienst and it is traced to a fable by La Fontaine ...
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9 votes
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Are Germanic languages closer to Italo-Celtic languages or Balto-Slavic languages?

The best answer is: There is no consensus about this. In the big tree of Indogermanic languages there are only two intermediate groupings that are generally accepted: Indo-Iranian and Balto-Slavic. ...
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8 votes

German (-stell-) and Slavic (-stav-) languages: who was first?

I agree with czypsu that the two roots are probably not identical (though there is a theory that Proto-Germanic *staljan is not cognate with Greek stellō, but derives from *st(e)h₂- with the suffix *-...
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  • 22.6k
8 votes
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Two languages have the same homonym for two meanings but different phonetics

The words utrom, morgen, mañana don't all derive from the same word in Proto-Indo-european, so that is why they are pronounced differently. As to why "morning" and "tomorrow" are sufficiently similar ...
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  • 67.5k
8 votes
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Where is the Slavic homeland, according to linguists, and how do they know that?

I want to point out that there are a lot of tree names in Slavonic languages with clear cognates in other branches of Indogermanic, e.g., the words for birch and ash tree—the analysis goes down to the ...
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8 votes

Glagolitic Ⰾ (l) is like Ⰴ (d). Is it related to Latin / Old Latin l / d lingua dingua, lacrima dacrima?

Definitely not. The similarity of the Glagolitic glyphs is directly inherited from the similarity of the Greek letters Delta (Δ) and Lambda (Λ). Also for the Greek letter shapes there is no apparent ...
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7 votes
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German (-stell-) and Slavic (-stav-) languages: who was first?

Your compound examples are mostly calques, usually from German into Slavic but in fact often ultimately from Latin or French or Italian into both German and Slavic, in the middle ages. The calques ...
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7 votes

What phonological process changes е to ё in Russian?

In the old Slavic languages, the sound [o] could never follow the palatalized consonants (which in those times also included the hushing consonants Ш [ʃ], Ж [ʒ], Ч [tʃ], Щ [ʃtʲ], and also Ц [tsʲ]), ...
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7 votes
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When did Old Slavic ЪI become Ы?

The question would be better asked as “When did the OCS ЪИ become ЪІ and when did ЪІ become Ы?” The three variants were originally used interchangeably, but later Ы took over, the most obvious reasons ...
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7 votes
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Historical explanations for soft/hard declensions in Czech

Balto-Slavic languages developed their own way to decline adjectives, by combining the nominal forms with the forms of personal pronouns (In Slavic *jъ, ja, je). Many Slavic languages (e.g., Russian) ...
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6 votes

Are the orthographies of the Slavic languages generally consistent?

The question is why you would need to learn just any Slavic language? Generally, people have a reason they want to learn the language. But if any language will do without regard to usefulness, then I'...
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6 votes

How is the the adjective in a definite noun phrase different from a nondefinite one in Germanic and Balto-Slavic languages?

The adjective systems in Balto-Slavic and German languages are similar only from a very broad typological and historical point of view. Most Slavic languages — I can speak about Russian, but it must ...
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6 votes
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How are the palatal approximant and palatalization different in Slavic languages?

An old question, but perhaps the answer might still be useful. First, I believe that regarding Slavic languages, iotation is considered a feature of vowels (iotated vowels are preceded by [j]), while ...
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6 votes

Can Serbian, Croatian, and Bosnian be considered linguistically distinct?

I grew up the in the former Yugoslavia, and the language I studied in school was called Serbocroatian, which was spoken in four out of the six republics of the union. You were basically studying the ...
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  • 151
6 votes
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The Cyrillic script among the Slavic people

It is worth noting, that before the Cyrillic script there was the Glagolitic script used to write Old Church Slavonic. This is the script devised by Cyrill and Method, the Cyrillic script is a reform ...
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6 votes
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u and v distinction in Slavic languages

You missed Belarusian, where is it ў, pronounced /w/. This is significant as it is the common intermediate between /v/ and /u/. But I'm not sure how to answer you, because I'm not sure what your ...
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  • 6,374
6 votes

Where is the Slavic homeland, according to linguists, and how do they know that?

I'm struggling to find a true statement in that story :) Let's take it apart: Around the year 600, Slavic peoples suddenly appeared all over Europe: At least one Slavic tribe had settled in Europe ...
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  • 500
6 votes
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What is the difference between Slavic little yus and little iotified yus?

In the Old Church Slavonic language (OCS), the little yus Ѧ represented a nasalized front vowel, possibly [ɛ̃], and is traditionally transliterated as <ę>, while the little iotified yus Ѩ, as it ...
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  • 15.7k
6 votes
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Are "brat" and "frater" cognates?

Yes, frater and Брат are related. They ultimately come from the Proto-Indo-European *bʰréh₂tēr, from which indeed brat/Брат in various Slavic languages also is derived. You can see the descendants on ...
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  • 297
5 votes
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Suffix -sk[a/i] for adjectives derrived from nations in Nordic and some Slavic languages

The suffix *-isk- is Indo-European. It has offspring in Greek, Germanic, Baltic and Slavic, and also in Romance, where it seems to be borrowed from Germanic.
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