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Historical Linguistics


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Table of Contents

Introduction; 1. The nature of human language and language variation; 2. Language replication and language change; 3. Language change in the speech community; 4. Language contact as a source of change; 5. Sound change; 6. The evolution of phonological rules; 7. Morphology; 8. Morphological change; 9. Syntactic change; 10. Reconstruction; 11. Beyond comparative reconstruction: subgrouping and 'long-distance' relationships; Appendix: recovering the pronunciation of dead languages: types of evidence.

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This innovative textbook demonstrates the mutual relevance of historical linguistics and contemporary linguistics.

About the Author

Don Ringe is Kahn Term Professor in Linguistics in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Pennsylvania. Joseph F. Eska is Professor of Linguistics in the Department of English at Virginia College of Technology.


'Engaging, clear, modern, and intellectually honest ... this book will inspire a new generation of work in historical linguistics.' Philomen Probert, University of Oxford
'... a thought-provoking and innovative introduction to historical linguistics, combining a masterful command of traditional methods and a wide familiarity with cutting-edge research in theoretical linguistics.' Michael Weiss, Cornell University
"...The authors present the successes of traditional historical linguistics together with the developments brought about by general linguistics.... The book is clearly written and well organized, and there is a wealth of data-not all of it well known to linguists-that should excite the curiosity of even a casual academic reader.... Recommended..." --L. Lopez, University of Illinois at Chicago, CHOICE

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