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Julia G. Krivoruchko


The article presents fourteen case studies of the Judeo-Greek lexemes of Hebrew and Aramaic origin that have passed into the dialects and sub-standard sociolects of Modern Greek, and aims at improving their lexicological and etymological analysis. Starting with a brief description of the sources, it continues with a reconstruction of the semantic development of Hebrew/Aramaic loanwords and their derivatives on the background of typological parallels from other Jewish and non-Jewish languages.

Lea Schäfer


This article shows what we can learn from Vienna Jewish cabaret, so-called Jargontheater ‘jargon theater’ and the language situation of Vienna Jews at the end of the 19th century. By analyzing one of the most popular plays of this genre, we can see how structures from Yiddish dialects fused with Viennese German and what may have caused ‘Vienna Jewish speech,’ a Judeo-German city variety in the First Austrian Republic (1920s and 1930s).

Yishai Neuman


Oral transmission of the Tannaitic Hebrew double genitive vocative ribbono šella‘olam ‘Master of the Universe’ maintains the definite article in the Hebrew component of two ancient Jewish vernaculars: Jewish Neo-Aramaic and Judeo-Arabic in Djerba. The textual transmission of the phrase, changed it graphemically from the Tannaitic original רִבּוֹנוֹ שֶׁלָּעוֹלָם into medieval רִבּוֹנוֹ שֶׁל עוֹלָם. The new spelling was the source of its final formation in Yiddish and Judeo-Spanish, without the definite article. The decategorialization of this double genitive phrase from a theocentric vocative to a semantically bleached interjection in these Jewish languages, especially Yiddish, was the point of departure for its meaning and pragmatic function in nascent spoken Modern Hebrew, as evidence from Mendele’s bilingual oeuvre indicates. It may be tentatively proposed that further grammaticalization and broadening of this substrate component structure-function pairing may have led to the emergence of a new category of analogically constructed discourse markers in Modern Hebrew.

Habib Borjian


This article studies the native language of the Isfahani Jewish community. A description of the provenance of the community is followed by the sociolinguistic situation in the diaspora. The language description includes phonology and morphosyntax, with an emphasis on poorly studied features. The article is supplemented with texts and a glossary. The data was collected in Isfahan and from the diaspora community in New York City.

Parzival auf dem Zauberberg?

Spuren Wolframs von Eschenbach in Thomas Manns Roman

Kathrin Friedrich


Medieval German literature had a deeper impact on Thomas Mann than is typically assumed. The comparison between Wolfram’s von Eschenbach Parzival and Thomas Mann’s The Magic Mountain illustrates this influence. Nearly 700 years separate both novels, nevertheless, they show amazing parallels. Especially as their narrators are very much alike. Both appear exposed in their stories, utilise Wolfram’s Bogengleichnis, and are unreliable. In addition, they both reflect on their narrations as literary constructs. While Wolfram’s narrator defends his protagonist Parzival for his misdeeds Mann does not bother to do so for Hans Castorp. The heroes and other characters are comparable, but develop differently. Parzival gains knowledge and his identity, whereas Hans Castorp loses both. Parzival fails his first encounter with the grail. Castorp, in contrast, wins a deep insight into life in his Schneetraum; but forgets it immediately. Castorp is as foolish as Parzival when he begins his journey. He is, however, not a grail-quester although Howard Nemerov concludes this in his 1939 dissertation. Yet, the Magic Mountain seems strongly influenced by Parzival. But while the characters in Parzival seek to help the central protagonist, egoism is predominant in the Magic Mountain, the hero stagnates and fails to successfully finish the hero’s journey.

Albrecht Classen


One of our central challenges as medievalists consists of how to respond to the question regarding the relevance of medieval literature and other documents. This article suggests that we can easily draw from medieval heroic literature where ideal and also negative examples of successful/failed leadership are provided. The MHG Nibelungenlied, at least in the first part, illustrates dramatically the consequences of a weak, indecisive, impulsive, and manipulable ruler, whose actions ultimately trigger a whole sequence of hatred, violence, and slaughter. The Old Spanish El Poema de Mío Cid sets out almost at the same point, with the protagonist being exiled because of malignment, but in the course of events, he demonstrates convincingly what makes a true, honorable, admirable, and worthy leader. These two epic poems can serve powerfully as illustrations of failed and successful leadership, and can thus offer significant instructions for modern concerns in politics, business, administration, the church, schools, and universities.

John M. Jeep


This article researches alliterating word-pairs in Wolframs ‘Parzival’. First, all examples from the text are collected and analyzed to elucidate their occurrence in the Old and Middle High German context. It becomes clear which word-pairs have been inherited from Old and (Early) Middle High German, and which were possibly the making of Wolfram himself. In doing so, the inventory of alliterating word-pairs in the early language phases of German is expanded with a few more specimens. We also gain a deeper understanding of their role in the Middle High German courtly novel.

Arend Quak


The vernacular glosses in the manuscript Trier, Seminarbibliothek 61, are considered to be mainly Old Middle Franconian in the scientific literature. They are, however, mixed with Low German words, that are considered to be Old Saxon. With the help of the verb forms in these glosses this article tries to make probable that at least some of these Low German glosses are more likely to be Old Low Franconian than Old Saxon. At the same time it becomes clear that in the dictionaries the difference between weak ēn- and ōn-verbs in a number of cases is wrong or at least doubtful.

Antike Universalgeschichte und Säkularisierung im Melanchthonkreis

Georg Majors Edition des Justinus (1526/37) und die Chronica Carionis (1532)

Carsten Nahrendorf

This article argues that the literary reception of Classical historians through Philipp Melanchthon and his students made a decisive contribution to the pluralization and secularization of early Lutheran scholarly culture. It focuses on Georg Major’s hitherto unexplored edition of Justin’s Epitoma, which was printed in Hagenau in 1526, with a second, extended edition appearing in Magdeburg in 1537. Major’s first edition of 1526 is here scrutinized in the broader context of the emergence of Protestant universal history and the forming of Melanchthon’s understanding of the Four Kingdoms of Daniel, which is traditionally seen by scholars as the starting point of the distinction between secular and sacred history. The second edition (1537) includes a general instruction for the study of histories. Based as it is on Cicero’s historical-methodological principles of consilia, acta, and eventus, laid out in De Oratore, this handbook for Protestant Latin-school pupils is rooted in the historical thought of Italian humanists.

Aventure am Weißen Berg – Aventure des Lebens

Sinnsuche und Selbstdarstellung in den Tagebüchern Fürst Christians ii.

Andreas Herz

On close inspection, a short episode in the diaries of the Calvinist Prince Christian ii of Anhalt-Bernburg is shown to be a revealing cardiogram of a historic moment at the beginning of the Thirty Years War. In reading out and contextualizing this sequence surrounding the term “aventurier” we can uncover traces of Prince Christian’s understanding of himself and his world. His attempts to defy the increasingly heightened experience of contingency and loss of meaning and to defend belief in a higher order in the midst of chaotic events that ensued during the Thirty Years War, meant carefully balancing them against his own standards and role models. In this situation war can no longer be perceived in terms of a knightly “aventure”: it loses all connotation of a test of fibre in the service of ruler and country.

Rainer Hillenbrand

Angelus Silesius describes the mystical deification of the human soul as its inclusion in the Trinity. He uses traditional comparisons and metaphors, as formed on biblical basis by the Fathers to illustrate the inner Trinitarian relations, but also geometric and naturalistic analogies to lead the soul in three ways into God. These are always figurative appellations which, paradoxically, according to negative theology, can also be negated for the very essence of God, which remains unnameable. In this mystical unity, which in the teaching of the church can only happen by grace, but not in a pantheistic fashion by nature, man preserves the creaturely difference to the Creator. Even in the earliest epigrams, Scheffler’s Catholic point of view is that God cannot resist this union of love, and that therefore only man, with his free will, is responsible for its success. The model of the saints and the ethical demand for the keeping of the commandments and the doing of the good works, which confirm the authenticity of this mysticism as well as their conformity with the ecclesiastical tradition, also fit in with this result.

“Einen Newen Reformatorem

Die Reformationsschauspiele von Martin Rinckart und die Reformpoetik von Martin Opitz

Dirk Rose

The essay focuses on the drama-pieces planned by Martin Rinckart to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Reformation in 1617. They are concentrated around Martin Luther as a “hero” for the protestant confession, like in Der Eißlebische Christliche Ritter where Luther figures as a warrior of true belief. Special attention is paid first to the relation between text and music with regard to the performances of the pieces; and second to the question why Rinckart has obviously realized only three of the seven planned pieces about the reformation and Luther. For answering, the essay argues that the reform in poetics and poetry initiated by Martin Opitz has challenged the poetical concept of Rinckart’s pieces in such a way that he was unable to continue them. Ironically, his most famous religious poem Nun danket alle Gott has been rescued out of the wreckage of his ambitious plan of a Luther-Heptalogy.

Tobias Bulang

Pantagruelismus und Hexenangst

Johann Fischart als Übersetzer von François Rabelais und Jean Bodin

Tobias Bulang

The Alsacian author Johann Fischart translated Rabelais’ Gargantua as well as Bodin’s Démonomanie des sorciers. This study aims to clarify the connection between these most opposite texts. How does Rabelaisian laughter in German context connect to early modern witch-hunt ideology? Starting point of this investigation are Fischart’s puns and their lexical, phraseological, intertextual and interdiscoursive dimensions.

Praestigiator Quidam Magicus Magdeburgi

On the Secularization of an exemplum, the Magician of Magdeburg, in Johann Weyer’s De Praestigiis Daemonum (1563 ff.)

William C. McDonald

The Magician of Magdeburg, an anecdote in Johann Weyer’s De praestigiis daemonum, a book renowned for its place in the witchcraft discourse, tells of an ambitious ocular delusion, the supposed upward and concatenated flight of the magician, his horse, his wife, and his maid. Weyer cites this story in every edition of his book as an exemplum of demonic magic, its perpetrator belonging to Weyer’s category of infamous magicians. By the nineteenth century however, full literary secularization is observed. The crucial step was the identification of the little story, under the influence of the Brothers Grimm, as a regional and urban Sage, hence of interest more as an example of local folklore than as an illustration of a large-scale enchantment. Owing to this new taxonomy, the sorcerer emerges as a harmless practitioner of magic and a cousin to Till Eulenspiegel.

Rindenzettel und Schriftverkehr

Mediale und materiale Konstellationen in der Mitte des 17. Jahrhunderts

Michael R. Ott

This is an essay about media and communication, especially about the post and its effects on collective poetical production in the seventeenth century. Sigmund von Birken and the “Pegnitz Order of Flowers” take centre stage. As their members were widely scattered, literary societies relied on written communication and postal services. In their texts, Sigmund von Birken and others devised pastoral worlds in which these members may meet virtually and write simultaneously (in particular on trees). These pastoral worlds, the present author argues, fashion a utopian space in which the restrictions of postal communication are suspended.

Tradierende Drucker

Überlegungen zum Traditionsverhalten in den Schachzabelbüchern deutscher Frühdrucker

Philip Reich

The late medieval chess books developed a specific iconographic programm. In the transfer to the incunabula by some printers of southwest Germany (Zainer, Knoblochtzer, Schönsperger), a ‘material tradition’ and a specific behaviour towards traditions is obvious. Moreover, the picture of the deviant eighth pawn is combined with the Low-German parody text Der Boiffen Orden and fool’s literature.

Wer Griechisch lernt, hat mehr vom Leben!

Simon Lemniusʼ Elegia in Commendationem Homeri wieder vollständig

Peter Litwan

So far the Elegia in commendationem Homeri by Simon Lemnius (1511–1550) has only been edited in an incomplete form (Daphnis 17 (2), 1988, 205 ff.), because the ending of the only known printing at that time was mould-infested and thus illegible. Due to the discovery of an undamaged printing from Wittenberg, the ending is legible as well and the text can now be edited in full, so that the meaning of the title is intelligible at last. Due to other texts bound in the same volume with the two printings, the place of storage and an indication of ownership, maybe even the as yet unknown place of printing, Wittenberg, can be presumed.

Hier van daan ging ik na een Boekverkoopers Winkel

Buchmarktkenntnis und poetologische Selbstreferenzialität in einem niederländischen Szeneroman des späten 17. Jahrhunderts

Jan Habermehl

This article investigates the anonymously published Dutch libertarian student novel De Leidsche Straat-Schender, Of de Roekelooze Student and discusses its narrator’s awareness of the contemporary literary scene during the 1680s in Amsterdam. A high level of poetological self-referentiality is related to the material needs and economical conditions of Dutch book trade, especially to the life circumstances of a prominent editor of libertarian literature, Timotheus ten Hoorn.

Elmar Seebold


Gmc. and oir. *orbho- ‘inheritance’ can be derived from the preliminary stage of oir. erbaid ‘entrust’; gr., lt. and arm. *orbho- ‘orphan’ could be derived from a word with prothetic vowel o- and reflect a root *rebh-. From these possibilities can be deduced that the two orbo’s are different words from beginning.

Erika Langbroek and Francis Brands


It may be that the French and German authors of La vie du pape Grégoire and Gregorius were so influenced by classical texts as part of their education that these Gregorian legends contain motifs and structural elements of a classical comedy or tragedy. Therefore these legends are compared with twelve comedies by Plautus and Terence.

Games with names

Naming practices and deliberate language change

Anne Storch


This paper discusses deliberate changes surrounding the practice of naming (people and objects). I first present a discussion of naming and healing, and then turn to the act of naming as an active agent for language change in the context of praise names and names that are used as comments on social change. There are particularly rich areas where the deliberate, creative change of language is strikingly visible, namely in tourism. The analysis of both the deliberate linguistic manipulations and the rationalization of these is informed by African philosophy and local metalinguistic discourse, as part of a project often referred to as the ‘Southern Theory’. I consider the philosophical and theoretical concepts of language and language change that stem from Kenyan and Tanzanian intellectuals and experts who are interested in emic approaches and local epistemologies, emphasizing cultural and social contexts of doing things with words. Intentional language change is seen in this contribution as complex and performative, and is analyzed as the result of individual agency as well as a community’s agreement over what might be done with words.

Matthias Urban


Studies of language contact in the Central Andes of Peru and Bolivia have focused strongly on the present-day contact situation between Quechua and Spanish, and the intricate and multilayered contact relationship between the Quechua and Aymara lineages. There are fewer studies of the influence of Quechua on minor non-Quechua languages of the Andes, and still fewer studies which, conversely, explore the influence of non-Quechua languages on Quechua. Focusing on the lexicon, this article explores the impact of the complex linguistic ecology of Northern Peru on the five Quechua varieties of that region—Lambayeque, Cajamarca, Chachapoyas, San Martín and Ancash Quechua. The study identifies lexical items that lack clear Quechua etymologies in the relevant varieties and carries out external comparisons of these items with the vocabulary of the non-Quechua languages of Northern Peru to identify possible sources. Results show that borrowing is mostly localized: that is, whereas influence from Amazonian lowland languages is almost exclusively found in the eastern varieties of Chachapoyas and San Martín, highland Quechua varieties have typically borrowed from neighboring highland languages.

Peter Bakker


This paper links genderlects and mixed languages. Both may have their roots in a gender dichotomy, where two distinct populations come together and blend into a new one, with different linguistic consequences. Mixed languages are generally assumed to be the result of deliberate or conscious language change and often come about as the result of an act of identity, connected to the birth of a new social or ethnic group. Societies or ethnic groups that are the result of mixed marriages may develop a mixed language or a genderlect. I show that there is a connection between the two, as proven in one specific case: a mixed language developed into a genderlect over several centuries. Typically, mixed languages combine elements from two languages with results that are so unusual that they are clearly not the result of normal language change, i.e. they are not outcomes of regular transmission between generations. Certain combinations found in genderlects show parallel patterns, for example in having personal pronouns or deictic elements that derive from other languages. Comparative evidence based on structural parallels suggests that some such genderlects (though not necessarily all) derive from deliberate changes by earlier generations. In this paper, I also investigate whether there is a link between societies with socially quite different roles for men and women, and societies with a genderlect, and find that such a link does not seem to exist.

Margreet Dorleijn


This article demonstrates that analyzing evaluative metalinguistic comments on linguistic features can be a valuable diagnostic tool in understanding how emergent varieties develop and conventionalize. The paper provides a discussion of the advantages and disadvantages of metalinguistic activity as part of the diverse sociolinguistic research disciplines. It then discusses what constitutes an evaluative metalinguistic comment, and classifies metalinguistic comments. Subsequently, the paper discusses data of a developing variety (Turkish-Dutch mixed speech). These data suggest that insiders monitor implicit norms, and reprimand transgressors, and/or deliberately transgress these norms (mostly in a humorous way), which amounts to the same thing: a keen awareness of these norms. Outsiders notice linguistic elements which contrast with their own variety.

Mikael Parkvall


Almost all creolists see creole formation as a case of (failed) second language acquisition. I argue that there are good reasons to distinguish between second language acquisition and pidginisation/creolisation, and that little is gained by equating the two. While learners have an extant language as their target, pidginisers typically aim to communicate (in any which way) rather than to acquire a specific language. In this sense, pidginisation represents, if not “conscious language change”, at least “conscious language creation”.

Carla Dauven-van Knippenberg

Gertjan Postma


A well-known exception to Grimm’s Law, /kʷ/ > /f/ instead of /kʷ/ > /hʷ/, is taken as a starting point and its reflexes in Middle Dutch and Sal-Frankic are discussed. As to the PIE root *leikʷ-, MD and MLG līf- in the compounds līfeigen ‘owned by the fief’, līftuht ‘feudal law’, and līfcōp ‘feudal transaction fee’ is identified as derived from this root under a regular sound change, which is coined Uhlenbeck’s Law. Uhlenbeck’s Law acts as a resolution of a pansyllabic constraint, not a constraint on roots. As to Sal-Frankic, the new etymology of SF leo- ‘related to the tenements’’, and by extention ‘agricultural’, sheds new light on the structure of the Lex Salica. It is argued that the tripartite manorial system of land tenure has reflexes in juridical terminology of this archaic legal document.

The tune drives the text

Competing information channels of speech shape phonological systems

Timo B. Roettger and Martine Grice


In recent years there has been increasing recognition of the vital role of intonation in speech communication. While contemporary models represent intonation—the tune—and the text that bears it on separate autonomous tiers, this paper distils previously unconnected findings across diverse languages that point to important interactions between these two tiers. These interactions often involve vowels, which, given their rich harmonic structure, lend themselves particularly well to the transmission of pitch. Existing vowels can be lengthened, new vowels can be inserted and loss of their voicing can be blocked. The negotiation between tune and text ensures that pragmatic information is accurately transmitted and possibly plays a role in the typology of phonological systems.

Thomas Neukirchen


There are convincing reasons to see the ‘Younger Titurel’ not as a continuation of the ‘Titurel’ Fragments, but as a critical supplement, completion and perfection of Wolfram von Eschenbach’s ‘Parzival’. It is against this backdrop that we need to explain the ‘Younger Titurel’ taking up and correcting Wolfram’s ‘Titurel’ verses. This article will provide such an explanation. It starts from the premise that Albrecht does not only critically distance himself from Wolframs narration, but also from the superficial form of the ‘Parzival’ and ‘Titurel’. From his perspective, the narrative form of ‘Parzival’ was inappropriate. This opinion manifests itself in the harmonized verse of YT. Through its claim to beauty, it promises to bestow a capacity for knowledge which is directed towards the Good. In that regard, the ‘Younger Titurel’ is a noëtic novel.

John McWhorter


Recent theories of creole genesis propose that creole languages did not emerge via the expansion of pidgin varieties (DeGraff, 2001; Mufwene, 2001, 2008). This paper argues that the multiethnolects that have formed in many European cities constitute a demonstration case of the genesis scenario these new creolist theories reconstruct. Crucially, however, the multiethnolects, while displaying a modest degree of grammatical simplification and restructuring, exhibit this to nothing approaching the degree that creoles do. This supports the idea that creoles form from a break in transmission rather than simply hybridization.

Dov Cohen and Ora (Rodrigue) Schwarzwald


It is commonly accepted that Hilkhot Sheḥiṭa u-Vdika (literally, ‘The Laws of Ritual Slaughter and Examination’—Constantinople ca. 1510) was the first publication ever printed in Judeo-Spanish. Yet scholars possessed no evidence that the work actually existed, and no information was available regarding its contents or language. Recently, however, the first four pages of the publication were discovered among the remnants of the Cairo Genizah. The current study is a preliminary description of this publication’s historical bibliography, halakhic sources, structure and contents, orthography and spelling (which reflect untrained writing and inconsistent pronunciation), and its special vocabulary, including the Hebrew component, which specifically relates to religion.

Gabi Abramac


The European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages (1992) seeks to protect and promote regional and minority languages in Europe. The objectives and principles defined by the Charter include the recognition of regional and minority languages as cultural assets. The Charter also commits the signatories to promote the study of, and research on, regional and minority languages. Bosnia and Herzegovina signed the Charter in 2005 and officially ratified it in 2010, applying it to seventeen regional and minority languages including Ladino and Yiddish. This paper examines the disparity between the obligations entered into and the actual state of affairs. It also investigates the linguistic repertoire and language ideologies of the Jewish community in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the extent and nature of its interest in revitalizing Ladino.

Tamari Lomtadze and Reuven Enoch


The Judeo-Georgian language has not yet been fully studied. Up to the end of the 20th century, only religion, traditions, and customs had been considered key identity markers of Georgian Jews. The first comprehensive scholarly works relating to Judeo-Georgian appeared at the turn of the century. This article builds on previous research on the speech varieties of Georgian Jews. The purpose of the present article is to demonstrate that alongside religion, customs, traditions, and culture, language was one of the main identity markers of the Jews in Georgia. The variety of Georgian spoken by the Jews differed from standard Georgian in prosodic (intonational), grammatical, and lexical features. The sociocultural and ethnolinguistic distinctiveness of their speech was reflected primarily in the use of Hebraisms.

Bryan Kirschen


This study implements the Leipzig-Jakarta list as a word-elicitation task among speakers (n=20) of Judeo-Spanish in South Florida. Data demonstrate that while entirely different lexemes may be used to express similar meanings for a given token, variation is most demonstrable through phonological processes. An analysis of responses (n=2,000) reveals variation and innovation in the production of vowels (mid-vowel raising, apheresis, prothesis), consonants (de/voicing or palatalization of sibilants, preservation of etymological f–, metathesis), and stress (proparoxytonic vs. oxytonic). Data also reveal that of the basic lexicon in Judeo-Spanish (e.g., function words, body parts, living creatures, etc.), only 5% is of non-Hispanic origin. In addition, this study examines the sociolinguistic organization of Sephardim in South Florida, accounting for the vitality and endangerment of Judeo-Spanish in this diasporic community, while also exemplifying the linguistic ramifications of contact with other languages.

András Róna-Tas


This paper surveys the Khitan names of the so-called “Five Capitals” of the Liao empire (907–1125). In this connection, the lexemes denoting the compass points (north, south, east, west) and related expressions of orientation (right, left, centre) are examined in the light of the information supplied by the relevant historical context and the extant corpus of Khitan Small Script texts. In addition, the dynastic name of the Liao empire is also discussed. The discussion reveals several previously unobserved details of linguistic, philological, historical, and cultural interest, and allows the Khitan system of orientation to be placed in the general context of comparative Mongolic studies.

Pavel Rykin


This paper presents a new approach to reading the Preclassical Mongol inscription on the 1413 Tyr stele, now kept at Primorye State Museum named after V. K. Arsenyev (Vladivostok, Russia). The stele contains texts carved in three languages: Chinese, Jurchen, and Mongol. The Jurchen and Mongol texts are very close to each other in content, as well as in the grammatical structure of words and sentences. For this reason, some missing and previously illegible parts of the Mongol text can be reconstructed and read on the basis of the Jurchen version. Lines 2 and 3 of the Mongol inscription have already been discussed earlier in a separate publication. In the present paper, the same approach, combined with a careful investigation of all the existing photos and rubbings of the inscription, is extended to lines 4 to 9.1

Ian G. Barrere and Juha A. Janhunen


The paper discusses the controversy that has arisen concerning the origin and nature of vowel harmony in Mongolian, as well as in a number of other Eurasian languages. In contrast to the conventional understanding according to which Proto-Mongolic had a palatal-velar harmony of the same type as is attested in the Turkic and Uralic languages, it has been claimed recently that the harmony was actually of the tongue root type, involving, in particular, tongue root retraction in the pronunciation of certain vowels. However, while tongue root harmony is indeed prevalent in many modern Mongolic languages, including standard Mongolian, there are several arguments that can be made in support of the conventional reconstruction. There are serious reasons to assume that Mongolic has undergone a process of vowel rotation, which has turned the originally palatal-velar harmony to tongue root harmony. In this process the originally horizontally organized harmonic pairs have become verticalized. A typical result of the verticalization has been the rapid reduction of the original vowel paradigm as well as the development of new palatal vowels to complement the losses.

José Andrés Alonso de la Fuente


The paper presents a survey of the generalizing clitical particle documented in Northern Tungusic in the forms -wal, -mal, -gal, -wul, -ul, etc., which, in some languages, is also attested in the function of the disjunctive conjunction ‘either—or’. Focusing on the dialectological and diachronic explanation of the initial alternation of w and g in this particle, the paper brings forth arguments in favour of the hypothesis that these elements are ultimately connected with the verbal root gǝlǝǝ- ‘to want, to please, to look for’. The conclusion is of general typological interest, and well-known parallels for the proposed development can be found in, for instance, several European languages.

Vlada Baranova


The goal of this paper is a comprehensive description of the negation particle esǝ, which is the single preverbal indicative negator in Kalmyk, whereas other negation markers are placed after the verb. The particle esǝ is mainly used in subordinate clauses. Judging from corpus data, it also occurs with a small number of finite forms in emphatic contexts such as rhetorical questions. This paper provides an explanation for both of these facts based on historical and typological considerations. More specifically, it will examine the results of the development of the negation system on a synchronic level, focusing on spoken data and corpora. It will also contribute to a broader understanding of negation in subordinate clause. A typological overview of sources for different markers in dependent clause shows that the Kalmyk case is uncommon cross-linguistically. An additional factor that plays a role here is the dichotomy finiteness vs. non-finiteness/nominalization.

Alexander Vovin


The present article deals with the earliest known sources on a Mongolic language discovered in 2014 by the international team Dieter Maue (Germany), Mehmet Ölmez (Turkey), Étienne de La Vaissière and Alexander Vovin (both France) on two inscriptions. The importance of this discovery is three-fold: first, it gives us a glimpse of the earliest Mongolic language, predating by more than six hundred years the hitherto known earliest monument in a Mongolic language; second, in spite of the fact that the language of the inscriptions is somewhat close to Middle Mongolian, it provides the evidence of certain features that were previously only suggested for reconstructed forms of Mongolic; and finally, it significantly changes our general understanding of the mediaeval ethnolinguistic history of Central Asia.

Marcel Erdal


The controversy around the question of whether the so-called “Altaic” language groups are genetically related has again flared up during the recent years, with some scholars pointing at verbal morphology as the most promising base for “proving” such a relationship. However, much of the data quoted in this connection is controversial, and many of the actual parallels are clearly due to borrowing between the two language groups.

While it is a fact that Turkic and Mongolic varieties have undergone processes of phonic, morphological and syntactic convergence throughout their documented history, the issue of original “relationship” can best be approached on the basis of lexical data. The present paper is an attempt at an objective review of the lexical parallels between Turkic and Mongolic in the realm of basic vocabulary, as defined in terms of the Leipzig-Jakarta List. The result shows that the proportion of even potentially shared vocabulary items between the two language groups is too insignificant to justify the postulation of any genetic connection.

Dmitry Nikolaev


This paper discusses the impact of linguistic contact on the make-up of consonantal inventories of the languages of Eurasia. New measures for studying the importance of language contact for the development of phonological inventories are proposed, and two empirical studies are reported. First, using two different measures of dissimilarity of phonemic inventories (the Jaccard dissimilarity measure and the novel Closest-Relative Cumulative Jaccard Dissimilarity measure), it is demonstrated that language contact—operationalized as languages being connected by an edge in a neighbor network—makes a significant contribution to between-inventory differences when phylogenetic variables are controlled for. Second, a novel measure of the exposure of a language to a particular segment—the Neighbor-Pressure Metric (NPM)—is proposed as a means of quantifying language contact with respect to phonological inventories. It is shown that addition of NPM helps achieve higher prediction accuracy than using bare phylogenetic data and that distributions of different consonants display a different degree of dependence on language-contact processes. Finally, more complex models for predicting consonant inventories are briefly explored, demonstrating the presence of complex non-linear relationships between inventories of neighboring languages.

Jérôme Michaud


A puzzling fact about linguistic norms is that they are mainly stable, but the conventional variant sometimes changes. These transitions seem to be mostly S-shaped and, therefore, directed. Previous models have suggested possible mechanisms to explain these directed changes, mainly based on a bias favoring the innovative variant. What is still debated is the origin of such a bias. In this paper, we propose a refined taxonomy of mechanisms of language change and identify a family of mechanisms explaining self-actuated language changes. We exemplify this type of mechanism with the preference-based selection mechanism that relies on agents having dynamic preferences for different variants of the linguistic norm. The key point is that if these preferences align through social interactions, then new changes can be actuated even in the absence of external triggers. We present results of a multi-agent model and demonstrate that the model produces trajectories that are typical of language change.

Modeling change in contact settings

A case study of phonological convergence

Katia Chirkova and Tao Gong


Convergence is an oft-used notion in contact linguistics and historical linguistics. Yet it is problematic as an explanatory account for the changes it represents. In this study, we model one specific case of convergence (Duoxu, an endangered Tibeto-Burman language with 9 remaining speakers) to contribute to a more systematic understanding of the mechanisms underlying this phenomenon. The goals are (1) to address the role of some linguistic and social factors assumed to have an effect on the process of convergence, and (2) to test the following explanations of empirical observations related to phonological convergence: (a) the loss of phonological segments in a language that has undergone convergence is correlated with the relative frequency and markedness of these segments in the combined bilingual repertoire, and (b) widespread bilingualism is a prerequisite for convergence. The results of our agent-based simulation affirm the importance of frequency and markedness of phonological segments in the process of convergence. At the same time, they suggest that the explanation related to widespread bilingualism may not be valid. Our study suggests computer simulations as a promising tool for investigation of complex cases of language change in contact settings.

Brian D. Joseph


I explore here how aware speakers are of the history of their language as they use it and how aware of typology they are. I advocate for a speaker-oriented viewpoint and argue ultimately that speakers know little to nothing about language history and less about typology, and yet they behave in ways that essentially create typology and history. I offer a number of examples, mainly from Sanskrit and Greek, covering sound change and grammatical change and discuss issues regarding naturalness, gradualness, and social indexing.

Der ‘Münchener Psalter’ aus dem 14. Jahrhundert

Mittelhochdeutscher Stabreim in der Tradition Notkers

John M. Jeep


A fourteenth-century version of Notker’s translation of the psalms with commentary yields 58 alliterating Middle High German word-pairs. These are compared with Notker’s original Old High German text, whereby phonological, morphological, semantic and syntactic changes are noted. In studying the transmission of the Biblical text, both continuity and change become evident.

Akira Kusamoto


The purpose of this study was to discover the language preferences of a letter writer for Wilhelm von Berg (1401–1428) in 15th century Westphalia. Various written languages such as Ripuarian, Westphalian and Eastphalian were already established in the region and it is known that writers sometimes mixed one language variation with the other. The study also considers other questions: i) Did writers maintain their prior-developed writing habits? ii) Did they learn the written language practiced at a new location when changing their place of work? The research uses a collection of correspondences between Wilhelm and his siblings, most of which are published here for the first time. They cover his frequent moves from within North-Western Germany when he either wrote letters himself or had them written for him. The study starts with distinguishing the handwritings of his letters, and then moves to an analysis of language variations used through a comparison of specific words. Results show that changing location for one writer (probably Wilhelm himself) did not greatly influence his language use, but that he took on new variants of certain words in his letters.

W. J. J. Pijnenburg


The etymology of the name of the river Dommel in the Netherlands causes some serious difficulties. In fact it has up to now been seen as an unsolved problem. A new close examination of the oldest attestations, like Dudmala (AD 704), has resulted in a new analysis, viz. *dūd-mal-a in which dūd- means ‘folk’, mal- means ‘dingplaats’ and -a is the appellative for ‘water’ < *aχwa-: ‘running water near to a dingplaats’. The two first elements find their parallel in the German place name Detmold, traditionally considered as going back to Germanic *Þeud-maχla – 1263 detmalle, 783 theodmalli.

Formulaic Language in the Livonian Rhymed Chronicle

Set Phrases and Discourse Markers in Middle High German History Writing

Alan V. Murray


This paper investigates formulaic syntax in the Livonian Rhymed Chronicle (German: Livländische Reimchronik), a Middle High German (MHG) verse history composed around 1290. A common syntactical formula is a unit formed with the adjective vrô (‘glad’, ‘happy’, ‘joyful’) or its negative variant unvrô, together with the verbs sîn (‘be’) or werden (‘become’), with a genitive object: NP-Nom + SÎN/ WERDEN + NP-Gen + (un)vrô (e.g. der meister was der rede vrô). In almost every case the adjective (un)vrô occurs in end position, so that it can be rhymed with another common word, e.g. (‘then’) or (‘thus’). An important variation is introduced with the demonstrative pronoun des: Pro-Dem-Gen + SÎN/WERDEN + NP-Nom + (un)vrô. This construction has the metrical function of filling a complete line, but it also functions as a discourse marker: it comments positively or negatively on an episode it follows or introduces. The high frequency of this construction in this text compared to its occurrence in other genres written in rhyming couplets suggests that the author was more conservative and less inventive than his contemporaries. In addition he also drew more frequently on the vocabulary and conventions of heroic poetry in which formulaic language was very common. It is argued that the employment of formulaic phrasing and syntax are connected with the sociolinguistic circumstances of the recitation of the chronicle.

Grabfrevel und Wiedergänger in der Lex Salica

Lex Salica XIV,12; LV,5; D XIX,2

Elmar Seebold


The main theme in this piece is the interment of two corpses in the same coffin.

Arend Quak


Old Dutch place names from the period 700–1100 are here used for the reconstruction of the morphology of Old Dutch nouns. The genitive singular and plural of the strong masculine and neuter are here scrutinized, as well as the dative plural of all nouns. In the course of the paper the meaning of some place names is revised as well.

Das carmen heroicum und der Krieg

Martin Opitz’ Ratispona in libertatem vindicata (1633)

Dirk Werle

Martin Opitz combines elements of the panegyric and the heroic epic in his Ratispona in libertatem vindicata, an epic poem published in 1633. By means of a narration that adapts and variates the genre tradition, he creates a future-oriented perspective of historical meaning and presents an interpretation of the historical events constituting the war that later came to be known as the Thirty Years War. In so doing, he emphatically raises the claim that the carmen heroicum’s interpretation of history is a proclamation of truth.

Aigi Heero

The present article analyzes the depiction of the Thirty Years War in the texts by the scholars of the Reval (today Tallinn) gymnasium and focusses on the occasional poems of professors (e.g. Timotheus Polus, Reiner Brockmann, David Cunitz) composed in the 1630s as well as on the autobiography of the cantor David Gallus (probably written in the early 1650s). As a result, it will be shown that in the poems the war is regarded as a topos and the concrete events of war are represented on an abstract level. The autobiography of Gallus, on the other hand, describes the war from the distant perspective of a survivor and reflects how the war was felt and experienced by a “private” person.

Diaristische Aufzeichnung, publizistische Umsetzung

Konfessionsbedingte Dispositive der Kriegsdarstellung

Franz M. Eybl

Two Jesuits accompanied duke Maximilian’s campaign from Munich to Prague in 1620 in their courtly functions and recorded in Latin diaries the advance through Upper and Lower Austria and Bohemia as eyewitnesses. Johann Buslidius was the prince’s archivist, Jeremias Drexel his court preacher, one of the most important and successful religious writers of the epoch. This essay attempts to describe the conditions for recording and publishing war depictions in the context of Upper German Catholic denominational culture. Discussed are the differences between incident and recording (on the basis of different diary entries concerning a mutiny in Linz, Upper Austria), the thematization of war in Drexel’s religious writings, the differences between recording and printing in official publications about the war campaign (journal, pamphlet, panegyric, sermon) as well as the denominational differences in the evaluation and historical classification of the Thirty Years War.

Dreißigjähriger Krieg und Öffentlichkeit

Zeitungsberichterstattung als Erste Rohfassung der Geschichtsschreibung

Holger Böning

This study considers print media produced during the Thirty Years War, focusing on the fact – largely unknown by most historians of the war - that this was the first war in human history to be accompanied by newspapers printed on a regular weekly basis. It assesses the effectiveness of newspaper coverage of political, diplomatic and military affairs and the characteristics of war reporting. Little of what, in historiography, is generally counted among the arcana imperii remained hidden from the readers. A history of the war could be written on the basis of the newspaper reports alone. With very few exceptions, every battle and siege was covered in great detail. No other media shadowed the events of the war as closely as the newspapers, which present a unique narrative of the war and revealing insights into these historical events. They represent an indispensable historiographical source, constituting an initial draft historical narrative from a contemporary perspective.

Gottes Kalkül und (k)ein Ereignis

Der Tod Herzog Ulrichs von Holstein und der Untergang der Stadt Schweidnitz (1633)

Ulrich Seelbach

In 1633 the armies of Wallenstein and the united armies of Saxony, Brandenburg and Sweden met in front of the city of Schweidnitz. Instead of fighting a battle, a truce was agreed on August 22. On this day, one of the Protestants’ hopes, Prince Ulrich of Denmark, fell victim to an attack. And in the enclosed city hunger and plague raged for weeks. How these two events were treated or even ignored in contemporary newsletters, and how poets interpreted the events, is presented here. Analyzed texts stem from Daniel Czepko and the Lutheran preacher Friedrich Scholtz, who wrote an epic poem in honor of Schweidnitz.

Marie-Thérèse Mourey

This article seeks to shed new light on well known epic poems by Martin Opitz, especially the Trostgedichte, which were written at the beginning of the war. The relationship between history and fiction is developed through a specific kind of “story telling”, which aims at presenting the protestants as victims of persecution within all Europe, without mentioning the origins and reasons of this specific war in Germany. The author Martin Opitz, as their harbinger, tries to give moral and philosophical support to his readers but also calls for a strong resistance. The different epic works Opitz wrote during his short life can thus be seen as a encrypted and steadily updated comment to the current political and military events.

“Krieg/ groß Sterben/ vnd Hungers pein/| Bringt mit sich der Cometen schein”

Publizistische Folgen der Kometen von 1607 und 1618/19 im Vergleich

Joana van de Löcht

The comet that was visible in the sky over Europe during the winter of 1618/19 was often interpreted as a harbinger of the coming Thirty Years War. This article examines since when a connection between the comet as a celestial phenomenon and the historical event was drawn and how the budding war influenced the medial feedback regarding the comet. To this end, different types of publications are compared to reactions to the previous comet from the year 1607.

Krieg ohne Konfession

Fouragieren als Narrativ in autobiographischen Texten des Dreißigjährigen Krieges

Dirk Niefanger

This contribution describes the social practice of ‘foraging’ as a narrative in autobiographical texts from the Thirty Years War. The term euphemistically denotes the illegal provision of soldiers with supplies and loot – often as a replacement for outstanding pay. Those who practised foraging generally did not respect religious confessional boundaries. Presumably it was this indiscretion which led to the war not being portrayed as a confessional conflict in the texts examined. In this context, the war seems to be entirely non-confessional.

Stefano Saracino

This article explores narrative sources, which were left behind in the early stage of the Thirty Years War by Greek-Orthodox migrants. The most impressive text of this kind, which heretofore has been explored by scholars for different scopes, but has not been interpreted as testimonial of the war, is the final report of the catholic convert Leon Allatios from Chios for his principals at the Roman court. Allatios in 1622/23 was commissioned to organize the deportation of the Bibliotheca Palatina. The article analyses how the mobility of Allatios and other Greeks was affected by the events of war. Furthermore it focuses on the narrative strategies used by such migrants in communicating their experiences in the Holy Roman Empire, and finally it reconstructs the practices and processes used by Allatios for the accomplishment of his mammoth task; for his testimony of the abduction of the famous library from Heidelberg represents an interesting topic for studies on the history of knowledge.

“Nichts als der Tod und die Satire”

Grimmelshausens Kriegskritik aus heutiger Perspektive

Werner Wintersteiner

Grimmelshausen’s Simplicius Simplicissimus, the classic novel of the Thirty Years War, is a unique critique in an exuberant narrative form. The double perspective (the hero narrates, as an old man, his own life), the doubt as a principle, irony as the fundamental tone – these are his main strategies to analyse the ambivalence of human behaviour as well as to check critically social models of a more peaceful society. Grimmelshausen refuses any philosophical, political or theological justification of violence. However, his irony, his humour and his narrative power make the lecture of his work a pleasure until today. The comparison with a modern African novel, Ahmadou Kouroumas Allah Is Not Obliged, reveals similarities as well as differences and proves one more time the topicality and constant relevance of this Baroque novel.

Satirisch-elegisch-heroisches Erzählen von ‘Deß gwesten Pfaltzgrafen Glück vnd Unglück’

Die Querela Sufredi missa Vinoni (1621) als Reflex auf die Niederlage des ‘Winterkönigs’

Robert Seidel

The year 1621 saw the anonymous publication of a text under the anagrammatically encoded title Querela Sufredi missa Vinoni, reflecting the defeat of the ‘Winterkönig’ and its far-reaching consequences in the medium of elegiac lament. The fictitious speaker is the militarily and politically isolated Elector Palatine Frederick v. who bitterly addresses the dissolving Protestant Union, allegorically represented as an unfaithful wife. The Latin text substantially and structurally combines elements of (love) elegy, heroic epistle, and verse satire. The article confronts this so far unknown piece of poetry with a prominent counterpart, a satirical heroic epistle by the jesuit Jacob Balde, and analyses it with respect to its specific religious and political tendencies.

Vergangene Zukünfte

Prophezeiungen aus den Anfangsjahren des Dreißigjährigen Krieges

Michael Schilling

A significant rise in the number of literary prophecies occurs during the first years of the Thirty Years War. In the following, the author suggests a typology of literary prophecies between 1618 and 1622. In addition, he analyzes the characteristics of literary prophecies in details. Finally, he discusses some of the social and political functions the prophecies had.

Sabine Seelbach and Ulrich Seelbach

Wallensteins Tod in der Geschichtsschreibung

Die frühen Flugschriften und Schillers Geschichte des dreyßigjährigen Kriegs

Florian Krobb

This article investigates how contemporary news media, pamphlets and (slightly later) some more elaborate justificatory accounts of the events treated the death of Imperial Commander-in-Chief Wallenstein. The analysis of strategies of emplotment, structure and rhetorical devices of the relevant texts reveal how they all, regardless of the text’s position on either side of the religious and political divide, affirm the power of ‘history’ (fate, providence) to re-establish a balance that had previously been disturbed. A parallel analysis of Friedrich Schiller’s groundbreaking account of the Thirty Years War reveals how, 150 years later, the belief in the self-healing powers of history, the capacity of achieving its own equilibrium, still dominates his philosophy of history.

Beraubung von Toten und die Acht in vor- und frühchristlicher Zeit

Lex Salica XIV,9–10; LV,1 und 4; D XVIII/XIX,1

Elmar Seebold


The main theme in this piece is the robbing of dead bodies. This will be the cause for a discussion of outlawry in very early Germanic times.