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Pama-Nyungan, was Re: Indo-European family tree

From:Doug Dee <amateurlinguist@...>
Date:Friday, September 30, 2005, 22:18
In a message dated 9/30/2005 8:15:26 AM Eastern Daylight Time, andjo@FREE.FR

>When IE languages have replaced non-IE ones in historical times, eg Etruscan
>many languages of the Americas, the process has been facilitated by imperial >control by IE-speakers. Since there presumably weren't any empires around in >pre-Roman West and Central Europe, some other mechanism is presumably
>to explain its initial spread.
That reminds me of a question about another language family: RMW Dixon says that one reason to doubt that Pama-Nyungan (in Australia) is really a language family is that it is hard to see how one language (proto-Pama-Nyungan) could have replaced all the previously existing languages across a wide area (most of Australia) in the absence of empires, agriculture, or anything else that would have given the proto-Pama-Nyungans a decisive advantage over the preexisting languages and cultures. I'd be interested in the opinions of list members about that argument. Doug


Paul Bennett <paul-bennett@...>
Rodlox R <rodlox@...>
Roger Mills <rfmilly@...>