Nostratic (was Re: Schwebeablaut (was Re: tolkien?))
|From:||Jörg Rhiemeier <joerg_rhiemeier@...>|
|Date:||Sunday, December 14, 2003, 21:57|
On Sun, 14 Dec 2003 16:41:11 -0500,
Paul Bennett <paul-bennett@...> wrote:
> On Sun, 14 Dec 2003 20:06:41 +0100, Andreas Johansson <andjo@...>
> > Quoting Jörg Rhiemeier <joerg_rhiemeier@...>:
> >> These are indeed quite common in PIE, common enough to have a terminus
> >> technicus for this phenomenon: it is called Schwebeablaut.
> >> The origin might have been a difference in accent position:
> >> *CáRaC > *CeRC
> >> *CaRáC > *CReC
> >> I am planning to use Schwebeablaut in my IE-related conlang family
> >> "Hesperic", though I don't know yet what exactly to do with it.
> > What's the reason to reconstruct with a's rather than as CéreC and CeréC?
> My immediate thought when I saw it was "Nostratic, eh?", but that was
> conditioned by unfamiliarity rather than familiarity. AFAIK, only Baldi and
> Pokorny require a PIE phoneme /a/ (and sometimes /a:/), and Baldi's
> reconstruction really does not taste good to me.
I don't know about the reconstructions you talk about, but as for why
I reconstruct the pre-ablaut forms with *a rather than *e, see my
previous post in the "Schwebeablaut" thread. As *a doesn't contrast
with an *e in pre-ablaut PIE as I see it, it is merely a matter of
naming, and I prefer a name that describes what must have been.
> Speaking of which... Unaccustommed as I am to Nostratic, I remember reading
> of one particular reconstruction that was good because it "only" needed
> nine dental phonemes. Nine? Huh? Anyone care to explain this quite
> remarkable situation? Is Nostratic really that woolly, that the fewest
> number of dentals required is nine?
I also think that certain scholars reconstruct more phonemes than
they should. They apparently try to make their sound correspondences
simple in terms of avoiding conditional rules, thus they posit a
phoneme for each correspondence set. And because they try to get at
six different families under one hat, things can indeed get quite hairy.