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With its range focused on Indo-European and extending across Eurasia and into the Americas, this collection of seventeen studies investigates various aspects of the long-range comparison and classification of Indo-European and other major language groups. Some of them confront the controversial question of whether Indo-European and certain other language families had, extending the celebrated phrase of Sir William Jones in 1786, 'sprung from some common source'. With comparative linguistics of recent decades in danger of stifling from an excess of caution, the quest for the answer to that question has now been broadened to attempt to find a deeper common source than Proto-Indo-European. This volume surveys the progress of the genetic classification of languages over the years, records recent developments, and points to abundant opportunities for future research. The contributors - some of the world's leading investigators of the genetic classification of languages - have adopted a broad outlook, looking beyond comparative Indo-European linguistics in two ways: first, by looking at genetic relationships outside of the Indo-European family, toward common sources more remote in time even than Proto-Indo-European, and, second, by looking beyond the grammar and phonology of Indo-European into the mythology, religion, and cultures of the early Indo-Europeans. The volume is in five parts. Part I contains a general introduction and a study of the work and influence of Sir William Jones. Part II discusses the languages and cultures of the Indo-Europeans and presents an archaeological insight into the peoples who preceded them. Part III presents a historical perspective on some problems of Indo-European and describes some recent work on various hypothesized relationships of Indo-European to other linguistic stocks, some of them far-reaching and controversial. Part IV surveys such potential cousins of Indo-European as Uralic, Altaic, and Kartvelian. P art V deals with methods of investigation, including a cautionary note to researchers who might exceed their evidence or be too hasty in positing distant genetic relationships, techniques that can be used to refine lexicostatistical studies, and a computer program for developing and testing hypotheses of distant relationships. The book is illustrated with 1 halftone, 34 line drawings, and 9 maps.<
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Book Description Stanford University Press, 1991. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0804718970