Re: Odp: Odp: Odp: Sea People [Just Joined, gots lots of questions
From: Gerry Reinhart-Waller
Unlike Latin, Anatolian and Tocharian have not left any
extant descendants -- they represent cul-de-sacs of
linguistic evolution. They eventually lost all their native
speakers and yielded to the dominance of other languages --
which doesn't mean that all their speakers were
exterminated. The death of Manx or Cornish was brought about
by language shift -- more and more speakers in each
consecutive generation switching to English.
As the Tocharians began to move east, the last contacts that they had
Indo-Europeans (before their much later interaction with the Indians and
Iranians) was with the Slavs, resulting in some Slavic influence in the
lexicon, but no impact on the essential structure of the language.
However, an alternative analysis by a Slavic linguist, who cites
phonological, morphological, and lexical similarities between Tocharian
and Balto-Slavic, is that "at some very remote time, the ancestors of
the Germanic tribes, the Balto-Slavs, and the Tocharians formed a
Northern IE dialect group which split from the common IE at a very early
stage and later (probably during the 4th milleium B.C.) dissolved into
Germanic-Balto-Slavic and Tocharian."
Georgiev, Vladimir I. Introduction to the History of the Indo-European
Publishing House of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, 1981.
Thus Piotr, if the Tocharians did in fact influence the Slavs, then I
must have some Tocharian genes in my biology.