Sievers' Law and the History of Semivowel Syllabicity in Indo-european and Ancient Greek

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2014-01-28
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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This book is an investigation of how semivowels were realised in Indo-European and in early Greek. More specifically, it examines the extent to which Indo-European *i and *y were independent phonemes, in what respects their alternation was predictable, and how this situation changed as Indo-European developed into Greek.

The comprehensive nature of this study, its chronological sensitivity, and careful assessment of what is inherited and what is innovative, enables substantive conclusions to be drawn regarding the behaviour of semivowels at various stages in the history of Greek and in Indo-European itself.

Author Biography

P. J. Barber is a Departmental Lecturer in Comparative Philology and a Research Fellow at Wolfson College, Oxford. His interests include Indo-European, Greek, and Indo-Iranian phonology, Greek verbal semantics, and contemporary syntactic theory.

Table of Contents

Part 1: Evidence for Sievers' Law and the Possibility oh Inheritance
1. Introduction
2. Sievers' Law: Gothic and Vedic
3. Chronology and Inheritance
Part II: Greek Nominal Categories
4. Sievers' Law in Greek
5. Evidence from *-ye/o Nominals
Part III: Verbal Categories
6. Preliminary Considerations
7. Greek *-ye/o- Verbs
8. Conclusions

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