- Slawische Sprachen (8) (remove)
- On the history of the genitive plural in Slavic, Baltic, Germanic, and Indo-European (1978)
- A correct interpretation of the genitive plural forms in Slavic and related languages requires a detailed chronological analysis of the material. At every stage of development we have to reckon with both phonetically regular and analogical forms. Analogy operates quite often along the same lines in different periods. Explaining an analogic change amounts to indicating a model, a motivation, and a stage of development for its effectuation. If one of these cannot be indicated, we must look for a phonetic explanation.
- Early dialectal diversity in South Slavic I (2003)
- The large majority of the isoglosses which can be established in the South Slavic dialectal area date from the time of the disintegration of Common Slavic and from more recent periods (e.g., Ivi´c 1958: 25ff). The isoglosses have often shifted in the course of the centuries, so that their original position cannot always be determined. In this study I shall concentrate upon the dialectal differences which originated before the 10th century. At that time, Slavic was still a largely uniform language, though it was certainly not completely homogeneous.
- From Proto-Indo-European to Slavic (2005)
- A correct evaluation of the Slavic evidence for the reconstruction of the Indo- European proto-language requires an extensive knowledge of a considerable body of data. While the segmental features of the Slavic material are generally of corroborative value only, the prosodic evidence is crucial for the reconstruction of PIE. phonology. Due to the complicated nature of Slavic historical accentology, this has come to be realized quite recently.1 As a result, much of the earlier literature has become obsolete to the extent that it is based upon an interpretation which does not take the multifarious accentual developments into account. I shall give one example.
- Early dialectal diversity in South Slavic II (2003)
- Twenty years ago I discussed the oldest isoglosses in the South Slavic linguistic area (1982). Subscribing to Van Wijk’s view that the bundle of isoglosses which separates Bulgarian from Serbo-Croatian was the result of an early split in South Slavic and that the transitional dialects originated from a later mixture of Serbian and Bulgarian dialects when the contact between the two languages had been restored (1927), I argued that the shared innovations of Bulgarian and Serbo-Croatian must be dated to a period when the dialects were still spoken in the original Trans-Carpathian homeland of the Slavs. I concluded that there is no evidence for common innovations of South Slavic which were posterior to the end of what I have called the Late Middle Slavic period, which I dated to the 4th through 6th centuries AD. At that time, the major dialect divisions of Slavic were already established.
- Rise and development of Slavic accentual paradigms (2009)
- It appears that the complexity of Slavic historical accentology is prohibitive for most non-specialists in the field. It may therefore be useful to approach the subject from a number of different angles in order to render it more accessible to a wider audience. In the following I shall discuss the separate accent paradigms and their development from the Late Balto-Slavic system, which is structurally similar to that of modern Lithuanian, up to the end of the Proto-Slavic period, when the system resembled what we find in modern Serbo-Croatian. The numbering of the stages 1.0 through 10.12 is the same as in my earlier publications (1989, 2003, 2005, 2006a, 2008b). For the rise and development of the accentual system up to the end of the Balto-Slavic period I may refer to my discussion (2006b, 2008a) of Olander’s dissertation (2006). It resulted in a system of four major and two minor accent types.
- West Slavic accentuation (2009)
- At the time of the earliest reconstructible dialectal divergences, which belong to the Late Middle Slavic period of my chronology (stages 7.0 - 8.0 of Kortlandt 1989a, 2003, 2008), the West Slavic languages represented the most conservative part of the Slavic dialects (cf. Kortlandt 1982b: 191 and 2003: 231).
- Winter's law again (2007)
- Since I discussed the scholarly literature on Winter’s law twenty years ago (1988), several important articles on the subject have appeared (Young 1990, Campanile 1994, Matasovic 1995, Derksen 2002, Dybo 2002, Patri 2005, Derksen 2007). As the law evidently continues to be controversial, it is important to look into the nature of the evidence and counter-evidence which is adduced. It appears that doubts about Winter’s law are largely the result of four types of misunderstanding.