> You missed the point completely, which suggests that you
> don't understand how comparative reconstruction works.
> > I know perfectly how the comparative method works,
> This is far from evident.
> PIE is by definition the most recent common ancestor ofNo, it's a HYPOTHESIS. IMHO this "most recent common ancestor" (it it actually existed) would be quite remote in the past (at least Mesolithic and possibly Upper Paleolithic), more like the "Proto-Nostratic" commonly depicted by Nostraticists.
> the IE languages, as best we can reconstruct it.
> > According to this definition, PIE would be closer to a
> > Platonic ideal than to an attainable goal.
> It's a rather basic definition.
> > IMHO the hypothesis of a monophyletic IE family (i.e. allYes, but being a family doesn't imply the traditional single-tree model is still valid for IE.
> > IE languages branching from a tree with PIE at the top) is
> > inconsistent with linguistic data, although surely it was
> > the only available when neogrammarians first formulated it
> > in the 19th century.
> Oh, the historical facts are obviously more complicated than
> simple branching; that's obvious even just within IE
> subfamilies. It's also clear that the IE languages do form
> a family.
> > But IMHO they can be explained as different reflexes of aOnly that they can't be properly explained within the traditional model, thus showing its inconsistence.
> > former sibilant affricate like the one we find in PNEC.
> > I've simply extended the comparative method outside the IE
> > family to help us understand what you regard as "purely
> > internal matters".
> Because they *are* purely internal matters.
> > I also don't think we have to demonstrate a geneticThis might be true for the words themselves, but not necessarily for the languages involved.
> > relationship PRIOR to accepting cognacy, as this is
> > utterly inconsistent. We can only posit a genetic
> > relationship from a mass of cognates along with
> > predictable (I prefer this term to "regular") sound
> > correspondences, and nobody would do so with a single
> > cognate.
> Don't be silly. The word 'cognate' *means* that there is a
> genetic relationship. When you say that A and B are
> cognate, YOU ARE ASSERTING A GENETIC RELATIONSHIP.
> Any possible relationship between PIE *h2rtk^o- and PNECThen IMHO the comparative method has been incorrectly applied for the IE family.
> *XHVr[ts']V becomes relevant only when those
> reconstructions become part of the evidence for a common
> ancestry for PIE and PNEC. This, of course, is
> necessarily preceded by their convincing reconstruction
> from their putative reflexes, which is a family-internal
> > This corresponds to the isolacionist model held by most
> > IE-ists but not by macro-comparativists.
> It has nothing to do with 'models'; it's simply a matter of
> And while there are certainly exceptions, aThen I must be one of these exceptions. :-)
> great many long-rangers are methodological dunderheads;
> Ruhlen, Bengtson, and Starostin come to mind immediately.