Hi Glennie,

----- Original Message -----
From: Glen Gordon <glengordon01@...>
To: <nostratic@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Friday, November 16, 2001 2:37 AM
Subject: Re: [nostratic] Re: The structure of nostratic

> Gerry flips his lid at Knut:
> >So what Knut?
> >
> >Your presentation is neither scientific nor does it contribute towards
> >betterment of mankind.
> Have I missed the motivation behind Gerry's harsh attitude towards
> Knut for asking good questions about Nostratic? This _is_ a
> Nostratic list afterall. Perhaps, Gerry should contribute towards
> the betterment of mankind by refraining from grumpy posting unless
> it gives us better insight into the workings of Proto-Nostratic.

GWR: My motivations are for a scholarly, scientific presentation of
information. In no way did I intend them to be grumpy. BTW, what evidence
is there for the workings of Proto-Nostratic? When one ascertains the
"origins" is there always a proto-origins?

> I don't think it would be a shocker to expose the fact that
> Nostratic is not well-worked out yet. There are a million-and-one
> general hypotheses so far on how it operates and little agreement.
> That doesn't mean that talking about Nostratic issues should be
> banned.

GWR: In no way am I banning the workings of either Nostratic or
pre-Nostratic. However, I'm asking for the evidence. That's all.

> I still think that agreement on grammatical processes within
> Proto-Nostratic cannot be attained until the structure of the
> Nostratic family tree is fully agreed upon. Most agree that IE,
> Uralic and Altaic are closer to each other than to the rest of
> Nostratic and this is certainly a starting point. Bomhard has
> published his views on this tree structure. I also have my views
> presented online at my website where I've drawn out a similar but
> slightly divergeant tree. (It differs a bit in the placement of
> ElamoDravidian and Sumerian but ends up being much like Bomhard's.)

GRW: Hey Glen. If our planet Earth is self contained, then shouldn't all
the IE or other such language families meet the same criteria?

> Now, it's probably too soon to worry about word order when the
> grammar hasn't even been figured out but perhaps by comparing
> AfroAsiatic against Kartvelian on the one hand and Eurasiatic
> languages on the other will be more profitable than randomly
> selecting just about any Nost.language for comparison. Eurasiatic
> languages seem to show SOV word order on the whole. AfroAsiatic
> does show alotta VSO but if you look at Kartvelian, we see SOV
> once again. The only difference between the more common SOV and
> the AfroAsiatic VSO pattern is the placement of the verb.

GRW: Exactly. Who can attest to word order when the grammatical sequence
hasn't even been worked out?

> Overall, this tells me that SOV is the likeliest word order for
> Nostratic... and no, Gerry, it can't be "proven". But then again,
> we can't prove that quarks physically exist except by way of
> the theory of quantum mechanics. In case you weren't aware,
> the study of comparative linguistics, particularly long-range
> comparative linguistics, can only be theoretical.

GRW: Sorry Glennie, but in linguistics for rules to be accepted they must
offer a proof. Linguistics is not a relative discipline; physics is.


> - love gLeN