21

There are hundreds of distinct languages in India, from two main families, Dravidian and Indo-European. Malayalam is Dravidian and Hindi is Indo-European, so they are not only different languages but unrelated ones. All the major languages of India have borrowed extensively from Sanskrit, hence the lexical similarities you mention; but this doesn't make them ...


17

Modern Hebrew is not SAE by any stretch. Going through Haspelmath's criteria: Definite and indefinite articles: Modern Hebrew (MH) has only a definite article (-ה), which is inherited from Biblical Hebrew (BH) Relative clauses formed by a relative pronoun: MH's relative clauses are formed by the particle ש- and not by a pronoun (inherited from BH) "Have"-...


13

In his article "Is Modern Hebrew Standard Average European? The View from European" (in "Linguistic Typology", Volume 17; 2013) Amir Zeldes lists 13 typological features defining SAE. Modern Hebrew (similarly to Biblical Hebrew) exhibits 3 of them. The article is available here.


9

1st, Latin is not part of Standard Average European (SAE): the sprachbund is thought to have emerged through language contacts during the early middle ages and later, at a time when (classical) Latin was long dead. Actually, the fact that Latin does not share the SAE characteristics is one strong argument to define SAE characteristics as coming from ...


6

The lines are blurry, but there are some good reasons to see these as distinct suffixes and not inflections: etymology Some of the suffixes evolved from previously separate words like determiners and pronouns like ille and tъ. In fact, in Romanian the suffix itself is declined and can also occur separately for emphasis. grammar In Macedonian, Bulgarian ...


5

My guess is this question has more to do with history and culture than language per se. You can say that English was influenced by French 'a lot' due to the Norman conquest (you can probably speak of 'specific source' of influence in this case). In this sense there is no any specific modern national language from which Russian had to borrow on a massive ...


5

You can find examples of words borrowed into Russian language on Wiktionary RU. However, this is far from being a comprehensive list. The number of words borrowed from Turkic languages is somewhere around 2-4 thousand. Probably the largest number of words was borrowed by Russian language from Church-Slavonic.


5

I wouldn't hundred percent subscribe to Tamil (refering here to classical Tamil Sangam poetry) being mora-timed. The counting of morae (from the first grammar Tolkāppiyam onwards) is somewhat confusing. E.g. there is of course one mora allotted to a short syllable and two morae to a long one, but moreover there is half a mora for overshort u and i and even a ...


5

It may moreover be noted that Malayalam could be considered a dialect of Tamil up to somewhere between the 8th and 11th centuries. From then onwards it went its own way and was heavily - and by far more than Tamil - influenced by Sanskrit, which may be seen by the mere fact, that the Malayalam script incorporates many non-dravidian Sanskrit sounds. Whereas ...


4

In Bulgaria, the definite article did start as a separate word, which loosely translates to "this one". or "he", "she" and "it" for the 3 genders, so Bulgarian ended with different suffixes for each gender. As example: котка+тя = котката [kotka + tya = kotkata] {cat+she} FEMALE куче+то = кучето [kuche + to = kucheto] {dog+it} NEUTRAL елен+той = еленът [...


3

In speaking of a comparison of vocabularies between the languages, one may refer to the Swadesh list, which is a commonly used compilation of vocabulary items used for quantifying the relations between two languages. I'll refer you to André-Georges Haudricourt, 1953 for the details, but the paper showed correspondences between Vietnamese and one or more of ...


3

Agglutinating Old Turkish (Uyghur) and Mongolian are similar to the extent of affixes being the same though quite sure these languages are not in any way related. Being no expert of Mongolian, I can't provide details.


3

Broadly speaking, there is a linguistic continuum across Northern India. This means that there are no hard borders between Sindhi, Panjabi, Gujarati, Marathi, Hindi, Bengali, Oriya; instead there is a gradual transition from dialects of one to dialects of another. The Dravidian, Munda and Khasi languages do not participate in this continuum, nor does ...


3

To quickly address the first question only - about the most common donor languages, here's what Lopatin and Ulukhanov 1997 mention: Old East Slavic (aka Old Russian); Church Slavonic; Turkic languages; Dutch; German; French; English. As a side note, a quote from As Lopatin and Ulukhanov, "в совр. лит. языке производные (словообразовательно ...


3

Recently, the World Phonotactics Database was launched. While I've noticed some errors in languages I'm familiar with, it may be useful to check there. First off, is there a trend across languages in terms of syllable structure? To start with, let's look at how many consonants can be in an onset. Their sample contains 2,338 languages. Of these, 2 do not ...


2

Besides the languages already named in other answers (Turkic languages, Finnic languages, German, French, and English) Greek should be mentioned. It seems that Russian prefers borrowing technological vocabulary from Greek where English takes a Latin loan, as observed in pairs like cosmonaut/astronaut. Of course, Russian also has a lot of loans from Latin, ...


2

The apt technical term for formerly different languages developing common features is sprachbund. And yes, there is a Sprachbund on the Indic subcontinent.


2

I asked my colleague Sally Thomason, whose book Language Contact has a special chapter on Sprachbunds. Her response: Interesting idea, John. Some of the shared features listed are underwhelming -- use of reduplication, for instance, and lots of CV syllables, and head-final structure: too common in languages of the world to be useful as diagnostics for a ...


1

Short answer The Thai vowel อู is a high, back, rounded vowel. The corresponding Lao vowel is very similar and for the Khmer one I can’t comment. The first element of the Vietnamese diphthong in mười is the vowel ư, which is a high, central, unrounded vowel. But Vietnamese also has a vowel u, which is like อู is a high back rounded vowel. Interim ...


1

In Norwegian, this is the case (I think): - A glottal stop may be used for some vowel-initial words. But it is merely a question of style. A famous dialect-phrase from the southern part of Norway; "Æ e a å eder". This can be pronounced both without any glottal stops, as well as with five glottal stops, one before each vowel. The glottal stops are typically ...


1

A sort-of example is English and French (or English-Spanish or English-Italian, ...) This isn't a truly valid example because they're both Indo-European languages. But the Germanic and Romance languages are from completely different branches of the Indo-European family. Genetically, English and French are as unrelated as English and Hindi. Indeed, the ...


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