[tied] Re: Bangani

From: richardwordingham
Message: 14812
Date: 2002-08-30

--- In cybalist@..., Piotr Gasiorowski <piotr.gasiorowski@...>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: richardwordingham
> To: cybalist@...
> Sent: Thursday, August 29, 2002 3:00 PM
> Subject: [tied] Re: Bangani
Indo-Aryan was the dominant language of the area; a relatively small
Centum-speaking population was absorbed and so was some of its

This fits the Out of India Theory (OIT) nicely. The most similar
documented European scenario I can think of is the expansion of
Walloons at the expense of Flemish.

There are other examples of what might have happened, albeit on a
larger scale, that would fit a non-Aryan Invasion Theory.

The Germanic invaders of France switched to Romance, which was the
dominant language of the area. But don't we regard the Germanic
stratum in French as a superstrate rather than a substrate?

An Indian example is Assamese. Assam was conquered by a Shan group,
the Ahom, who ruled from 1210 to 1826. Their (Tai) dialect is also
known as Ahom. The numerically dominant language of the territory is
Assamese, which is very similar to Bengali. In the 19th century the
Burmese invaded. The British expelled the Burmese and subsequently
annexed Assam. The Ahom therefore lost their status, and have
switched from Ahom to Assamese. Ahom may already have been losing
out to Assamese. It is now extinct.

In this scenario I would expect the Ahom influence in Assamese
(albeit small!) to arise from the period of Shan rule, and therefore
to be a superstrate, rather than a substrate. Any substrate
influence from Ahom speakers switching to Assamese should be
negligible by comparison.

These examples made me wonder whether the Centum element in Bangani
was a superstrate or a substrate, or perhaps neither.