>I do not know why Starostin reconstructs *� (and my teacher either).
>This different is very important in Altaic linguistic.

Hmm, well, it is Starostin afterall. Have you asked your teacher
about this?

>Yes, of course. Although these vowels are odd, these also are
>necessary. Many Altaic languages has length vowels (buriat, ordos,
>khalkha, evenki, even, kalmyk, turkmenian, turkmen, yakut, manchu,
>monguor...). In proto-Altaic, as I said, are odd. In fact, I only
>know twenty or twenty-five proto-Altaic forms with length vowels, for
>example *n'a:r' `new-born, spring, summer' (I think that there is a
>Nostratic etimology with this proto-Altaic form), *baya:(n) `rich',
>*k�:la `tongue', *bo:r `dust'... I give you references in order to
>study these forms:

Hmm... I always love finding regular patterns amidst chaos. I think
I have an idea developping which parallels IndoTyrrhenian long
vowels, and it could help explain why the long vowels are so

I have more questions:

1. Is the long vowel in *baya:n secure or might we reconstruct
2. Is it possible that *k�:la has only _one_ syllable?
(That is to say, is *k�:l a possible reconstruction?)

"What am I getting at?" you ask? Well, for a while I was content
in knowing that IndoTyrrhenian had only two vowels *& (which I
write as *e in my reconstructions) and *a. All was fine until I
started really thinking about certain, special words in IE that
appeared to have long vowels but that couldn't be accounted for
with compensatory lengthening or loss of laryngeals. Instead, it
appeared that some core words truely had _long_ vowels. For a
while, my mind resisted this, but I came around eventually to an

It turns out that there is a pattern to explain the long vowels:
Monosyllabic words were automatically lengthened at a very early
date. In effect, *&: and *a: were allophonic varieties of their
short counterparts *& and *a since the long vowels were shortened
when suffixes were added to the monosyllabic stem. Technically then,
I was still correct - There aren't really long vowels (that is,
they aren't seperate phonemes distinct from their short

Ex: IndoTyrrhenian *pa:t "foot (nom)" vs *pat:em "foot (acc)"
(IE *po:t "foot (nom)" vs *podm "foot (acc)" without length)

Now, I thought that this lengthening of monosyllabic nouns occured
sometime around 7000 BCE... However, your list of long vowels in
Altaic is intriguing me because I'm starting to wonder if
lengthening of monosyllabic stems is yet another isogloss between
IndoTyrrhenian and Altaic. (Vowel harmony might be another thing
shared between IndoTyrrhenian and Altaic.)

If all is correct, the lengthening would have occured between 9000
and 8500 BCE on the southern edge of the ProtoSteppe community in
Central Asia.

Thoughts? Am I crazy?

gLeNny gEe
...wEbDeVEr gOne bEsErK!

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