|Hypothetical Indo-European |
Graeco-Armenian (or Helleno-Armenian) is the hypothetical common ancestor of Greek and Armenian that postdates Proto-Indo-European. Its status is somewhat similar to that of the Italo-Celtic grouping: each is widely considered plausible without being accepted as established communis opinio . The hypothetical Proto-Graeco-Armenian stage would need to date to the 3rd millennium BC and would be only barely different from either late Proto-Indo-European or Graeco-Armeno-Aryan.
The Graeco-Armenian hypothesis originated in 1924 with Holger Pedersen, who noted that agreements between Armenian and Greek lexical cognates are more common than between Armenian and any other Indo-European language.
During the mid-to-late 1920s, Antoine Meillet further investigated morphological and phonological agreements and postulated that the parent languages of Greek and Armenian were dialects in immediate geographical proximity to their parent language, Proto-Indo-European.Meillet's hypothesis became popular in the wake of his Esquisse d'une grammaire comparée de l'arménien classique.
G. R. Solta does not go as far as postulating a Proto-Graeco-Armenian stage but concludes that the lexicon and the morphology clearly make Greek the language that is the most closely related to Armenian.
Eric Hamp supports the Graeco-Armenian thesis and even anticipates a time that "we should speak of Helleno-Armenian" (the postulate of a Graeco-Armenian proto-language).James Clackson is more reserved, considers the evidence of a Graeco-Armenian subgroup to be inconclusive and believes Armenian to be in a larger Graeco-Armeno-Aryan family.
Evaluation of the hypothesis is tied up with the analysis of Indo-European languages, such as Phrygian and languages within the Anatolian subgroup (such as Hittite), many of which are poorly attested, but which were geographically located between the Greek and Armenian-speaking areas, and which would therefore be expected to have traits intermediate between the two. While Greek is attested from very early times, allowing a secure reconstruction of a Proto-Greek language dating to about the 3rd millennium BC,the history of Armenian is opaque where its earliest testimony is the 5th-century Bible translation of Mesrob Mashtots. Armenian has many loanwords showing traces of long language contact with Greek and Indo-Iranian languages; in particular, it is a satem language. Also, although Armenian and Attic (Ancient) Greek share a voiceless aspirate series, they originate from different PIE series (in Armenian from voiceless consonants and in Greek from the voiced aspirates).
In a 2005 publication, a group of linguists and statisticians, comprising Luay Nakhleh, Tandy Warnow, Donald Ringe and Steven N. Evans, compared quantitative phylogenetic linguistic methods and found that a Graeco-Armenian subgroup was supported by that five procedures – maximum parsimony, weighted versus unweighted maximum compatibility, neighbor-joining, and the widely-criticized binary lexical coding technique (devised by Russell Gray and Quentin D. Atkinson).
An interrelated problem is whether there is a "Balkan Indo-European" subgroup of Indo-European, which would consist not only of Greek and Armenian but also Albanian and possibly dead languages, such as Ancient Macedonian and Phrygian. This has been argued for in research by scholars such as G. Neumann, G. Klingenschmitt, J. Matzinger, J. H. Holst. The Balkan subgroup, in turn, is supported by the lexico-statistical method of Hans J. Holm.
Armenian is an Indo-European language, belonging to an independent branch of which it is the only member. It is the official language of Armenia. Historically being spoken throughout the Armenian Highlands, today, Armenian is widely spoken throughout the Armenian diaspora. Armenian is written in its own writing system, the Armenian alphabet, introduced in 405 AD by the priest Mesrop Mashtots.
The Indo-European languages are a language family native to western and southern Eurasia. It comprises most of the languages of Europe together with those of the northern Indian subcontinent and the Iranian Plateau. A few of these languages, such as English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish, have expanded through colonialism in the modern period and are now spoken across several continents. The Indo-European family is divided into several branches or sub-families, of which there are 8 groups with languages alive today: Albanian, Armenian, Balto-Slavic, Celtic, Germanic, Hellenic, Indo-Iranian and Italic and 7 extinct subdivisions.
Armenians are an ethnic group native to the Armenian Highlands of Western Asia.
The Phrygian language was the Indo-European language of the Phrygians, spoken in Anatolia, during classical antiquity.
Paul Jules Antoine Meillet was one of the most important French linguists of the early 20th century. He began his studies at the Sorbonne University, where he was influenced by Michel Bréal, Ferdinand de Saussure and the members of the L'Année Sociologique. In 1890, he was part of a research trip to the Caucasus, where he studied the Armenian language. After his return, de Saussure had gone back to Geneva so he continued the series of lectures on comparative linguistics that the Swiss linguist had given.
In Indo-European linguistics, the term Indo-Hittite refers to Edgar Howard Sturtevant's 1926 hypothesis that the Anatolian languages may have split off a Pre-Proto-Indo-European language considerably earlier than the separation of the remaining Indo-European languages. The term may be somewhat confusing, as the prefix Indo- does not refer to the Indo-Aryan branch in particular, but is iconic for Indo-European, and the -Hittite part refers to the Anatolian language family as a whole.
Classical Armenian is the oldest attested form of the Armenian language. It was first written down at the beginning of the 5th century, and all Armenian literature from then through the 18th century is in Classical Armenian. Many ancient manuscripts originally written in Ancient Greek, Persian, Hebrew, Syriac and Latin survive only in Armenian translation.
The Paleo-Balkan languages or Palaeo-Balkan languages is a grouping of various extinct Indo-European languages that were spoken in the Balkans and surrounding areas in ancient times.
Graeco-Aryan, or Graeco-Armeno-Aryan, is a hypothetical clade within the Indo-European family that would be the ancestor of Greek, Armenian, and the Indo-Iranian languages.
In historical linguistics, Italo-Celtic is a grouping of the Italic and Celtic branches of the Indo-European language family on the basis of features shared by these two branches and no others. There is controversy about the causes of these similarities. They are usually considered to be innovations, likely to have developed after the breakup of the Proto-Indo-European language. It is also possible that some of these are not innovations, but shared conservative features, i.e. original Indo-European language features which have disappeared in all other language groups. What is commonly accepted is that the shared features may usefully be thought of as Italo-Celtic forms, as they are certainly shared by the two families and are almost certainly not coincidental.
Hellenic is the branch of the Indo-European language family whose principal member is Greek. In most classifications, Hellenic consists of Greek alone, but some linguists use the term Hellenic to refer to a group consisting of Greek proper and other varieties thought to be related but different enough to be separate languages, either among ancient neighbouring languages or among modern spoken dialects.
The linguistic classification of the ancient Thracian language has long been a matter of contention and uncertainty, and there are widely varying hypotheses regarding its position among other Paleo-Balkan languages. It is not contested, however, that the Thracian languages were Indo-European languages which had acquired satem characteristics by the time they are attested.
The Armenian hypothesis of the Proto-Indo-European homeland, proposed by Georgian Tamaz V. Gamkrelidze and Russian linguist Vyacheslav Ivanov in the early 1980s, suggests that Proto-Indo-European was spoken during the 5th–4th millennia BC in the "Armenian Highlands, Northern Mesopotamia".
Proto-Armenian is the earlier, unattested stage of the Armenian language which has been reconstructed by linguists. As Armenian is the only known language of its branch of the Indo-European languages, the comparative method cannot be used to reconstruct its earlier stages. Instead, a combination of internal and external reconstruction, by reconstructions of Proto-Indo-European and other branches, has allowed linguists to piece together the earlier history of Armenian.
Languages of the Indo-European family are classified as either centum languages or satem languages according to how the dorsal consonants of the reconstructed Proto-Indo-European language (PIE) developed. An example of the different developments is provided by the words for "hundred" found in the early attested Indo-European languages. In centum languages, they typically began with a sound, but in satem languages, they often began with.
The Armeno-Phrygians are a hypothetical people of West Asia during the Bronze Age, the Bronze Age collapse, and its aftermath. They would be the common ancestors of both Phrygians and Proto-Armenians and modern Armenians. In turn, Armeno-Phrygians were descendants of the Graeco-Phrygians, common ancestors of Greeks, Ancient Macedonians, Phrygians, and also of Armenians.
Tandy Warnow is an American computer scientist and Grainger Distinguished Chair in Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign. She is known for her work on the reconstruction of evolutionary trees, both in biology and in historical linguistics, and also for multiple sequence alignment methods.
Graeco-Phrygian is a proposed subgroup of the Indo-European language family which comprises Hellenic and Phrygian languages.
The name Armeno-Phrygian is used for a hypothetical language branch, which would include the languages spoken by the Phrygians and the Armenians, and would be a branch of the Indo-European language family, or a sub-branch of either the proposed "Graeco-Armeno-Aryan" or "Armeno-Aryan" branches. According to this hypothesis, Proto-Armenian was a language descendant from a common ancestor with Phrygian and was closely related to it. Proto-Armenian differentiated from Phrygian by language evolution over time but also by the Hurro-Urartian language substrate influence. Classification is difficult because little is known of Phrygian, but Proto-Armenian arguably forms a subgroup with Greek and Indo-Iranian.