|From:||Edward Heil <edwardheil@...>|
|Date:||Monday, April 12, 1999, 20:07|
Bryan Maloney <bjm10@...> wrote:
> > That's where the "no vowels in early PIE" idea comes from. And it do=esn't
> > mean that it was pronounced without vowels; if you listened to it it'=d
> > more or less like any other modern natlang. It's that vowels weren't=
> > roots the way they are in most modern languages, at least at an early=
> If the vowels weren't in the roots, then weren't they pronounced withou=t
> vowels, or were the roots never actually pronounced (simply "implied")
> but always given some form of alteration (I hesitate to say "inflection=",
> specifically) when actually used?
Um, think of it this way. According to scholars such as Winifred Lehmann=
proto-Indo-European didn't have vowels, the same way that modern English
doesn't have tones.
You still pronounce each English word at some particular pitch, with some=
particular pitch contour, but a given pitch or pitch contour is not tied
distinctively to a word the way it is in Chinese. You don't have to memo=
the pitch or pitch contour as part of the word, as you would in Chinese.
Similarly, in very early PIE, you still had syllable nuclei ("vowels") in=
words, but the quality and to some degree the location of those vowels we=
not tied to the roots. They showed up in pronunciation in various ways (=
I don't yet understand, cause I don't own Lehmann's 1974 work, "The Phono=
of Proto-Indo-European" (can anybody help me here?)), but they weren't ti=
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