Hamito-Semitic Etymological Dictionary

Materials for a Reconstruction


The Hamito-Semitic Etymological Dictionary, a project in the making since 1986, is the first dictionary to reflect the vocabulary of the extinct Proto-Hamito-Semitic (Proto-Afro-Asiatic) language. Reconstructed on the basis of Semitic, Ancient Egyptian, Berber, Chadic and Cushitic linguistic groups, the Dictionary plays an indispensable role in further research into the field of historical linguistics. It surpasses by far the only comparable work to date, M. Cohen's Essai comparatif sur le vocabulaire et la phonetique du chamito-semitique, published in 1947, which contains much less material and is now outdated.
The Dictionary comprises more than 2,500 lexical items and includes an introduction providing valuable information on the historical phonology of Hamito-Semitic as well as an index of meanings, which supplies linguistics, archaeologists and scholars of ancient history with added insight into the culture of the ancient speakers of Proto-Hamito-Semitic. An invaluable contribution to the field of Afro-Asiatic Studies, The Hamito-Semitic Etymological Dictionary will be used and discussed by scholars for years to come.

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Vladimir Orel, Ph.D. (1981) in Linguistics, Russian Academy of Sciences, is Senior Lecturer of Historical Linguistics at Tel Aviv University. He has published extensively on Indo-European and Afro-Asiatic historical linguistics.
Olga Stolbova, Ph.D. (1980) in Linguistics, Russian Academy of Sciences, is a Senior Researcher at the Institute of Linguistics in Moscow. Her interests are mainly in the field of Chadic languages.
' This immense work, which the editors describe as "devoid of many simple human joys", will stimulate research and imagination in ways previously impossible in Semitic linguistics'.
A.R. Millard, Society for Old Testament Study, 1995.
' An important addition to the growing literature on Hamito-Semitic.'
David I. Owen, Religious Studies Review, 1996.
' This is a courageous work which will help to provide solutions to some dificult lexical problems and also stimulate further study in Hamito-Semitic comparative studies. We are indebted to both authors for their painstaking work.'
Wilfred G. Watson, Studi Epigrafki e Linguistici, 1996.
' The above publication contains ample evidence for reconstructing the basic vocabulary of the Hamito-Semitic (or Afro-Asiatic) nations. At the same time it is the first etymological dictionary of this gigantic language family on the whole.'
Krzysztof Tomasz Witczak, Lingua Posnaniensis.
All those interested in historical and general linguistics, ancient history and prehistory, archaeology and ethnology of Africa and the Near East.