Re: Do Basque words for farm animals resemble Indo-European ones?

Miguel Carrasquer Vidal (
Sun, 10 Nov 1996 02:27:14 GMT

Richard M. Alderson III wrote:
> In article <55r933$> Jonathan Adams <jonathan> writes:
>>... to show how very rapidly can languages diverge from
>>one another in the 'primitive' state (unwritten and spoken by small, tribal
>I can, however, speak to the assumption here: Mary R. Haas (in her monograph
>_The Prehistory of Languages_), Leonard Bloomfield, Catherine Callahan, and a
>number of other historical linguists working Native American languages have
>demonstrated that the rate of change in unwritten languages is no different
>from that of written languages, neither highly accelerated nor highly retarded.
>Haas' work is probably the most accessible to the non-linguist.

Thanks for the references. I have always known in my guts that this
supposition of "unwritten languages change faster" was a myth, but I had
never seen a reference to any study investigating it. I'll look into

Miguel Carrasquer Vidal ~ ~
Amsterdam _____________ ~ ~ |_____________|||

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