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Proto-Turkic language

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Proto-Turkic
Reconstruction ofTurkic languages
RegionProbably the eastern part of Central Asia,[1] possibly including regions of East Asia and western Siberia[1]
Erac. 3000 – c. 500 BCE[2][3]
Lower-order reconstructions

Proto-Turkic is the linguistic reconstruction of the common ancestor of the Turkic languages that was spoken by the Proto-Turks before their divergence into the various Turkic peoples. Proto-Turkic separated into Oghur (western) and Common Turkic (eastern) branches. Candidates for the proto-Turkic homeland range from western Central Asia to Manchuria,[4] with most scholars agreeing that it lay in the eastern part of the Central Asian steppe,[5] while one author has postulated that Proto-Turkic originated 2,500 years ago in East Asia.[6]

The oldest records of a Turkic language, the Old Turkic Orkhon inscriptions of the 7th century Göktürk khaganate, already shows characteristics of Eastern Common Turkic. For a long time, the reconstruction of Proto-Turkic relied on comparisons of Old Turkic with early sources of the Western Common Turkic branches, such as Oghuz and Kypchak, as well as the Western Oghur proper (Bulgar, Chuvash, Khazar). Because early attestation of these non-easternmost languages is much more sparse, reconstruction of Proto-Turkic still rests fundamentally on the easternmost Old Turkic of the Göktürks, however it now also includes a more comprehensive analysis of all written and spoken forms of the language.[7]

The Proto-Turkic language shows evidence of influence from several neighboring language groups, including Eastern Iranian, Tocharian, and Old Chinese.[8]

Phonology[edit]

Consonants[edit]

The consonant system had a two-way contrast of stop consonants (fortis vs. lenis), k, p, t vs. g, b, d. There was also an affricate consonant, ç; at least one sibilant s and sonorants m, n, ń, ŋ, r, l with a full series of nasal consonants. Some scholars additionally reconstruct the palatalized sounds ĺ and ŕ for the correspondence sets Oghuric /l/ ~ Common Turkic *š and Oghuric /r/ ~ Common Turkic *z. Most scholars, however, assume that these are the regular reflexes of Proto-Turkic *l and *r.[9] Oghuric is thus sometimes referred to as Lir-Turkic and Common Turkic as Shaz-Turkic.

A glottochronological reconstruction based on analysis of isoglosses and Sinicisms points to the timing of the r/z split at around 56 BCE–48 CE. As Anna Dybo puts it, that may be associated with

the historical situation that can be seen in the history of the Huns' division onto the Northern and Southern [groups]: the first separation and withdrawal of the Northern Huns to the west has occurred, as was stated above, in 56 BC,... the second split of the (Eastern) Huns into the northern and southern groups happened in 48 AD.[10]

Dybo suggests that during that period, the Northern branch steadily migrated from Western Mongolia through Southern Xinjiang into the north's Dzungaria and then finally into Kazakhstan's Zhetysu until the 5th century.[10]

There was no fortis-lenis contrast in word-initial position: the initial stops were always *b, *t, *k, the affricate was always () and the sibilant was always *s. In addition, the nasals and the liquids did not occur in that position either.[11]

Bilabial Dental or
alveolar
Palatal Velar
Plosive and
affricate
fortis *p *t /t͡ʃ/ *k
lenis *b *d *g
Sibilant *s
Nasal *m *n //
Liquid lateral *l (*ĺ //)
rhotic *r (*ŕ //)
Semivowel *j

Like in many modern Turkic languages, the velars /k/, /g/, and possibly /ŋ/ seem to have had back and front allophones ([k] and [q], [g] and [ɢ], [ŋ] and [ɴ]) according to their environments, with the velar allophones occurring in words with front vowels, and uvular allophones occurring in words with back vowels. The lenis stops /b/, /d/ and /g/~/ɢ/ may have tended towards fricatives intervocalically.[12]

Vowels[edit]

Like most of its descendants, Proto-Turkic exhibited vowel harmony, distinguishing vowel qualities a, ï, o, u vs. ä, e, i, ö, ü, as well as two vowel quantities. Here, macrons represent long vowels. Some scholars (e.g. Gerhard Doerfer) additionally reconstruct a mid back unrounded based on cognate sets with Chuvash, Tuvan and Yakut ï corresponding to a in all other Turkic languages, although these correspondences can also be explained as deriving from *a which underwent subsequent sound changes in those three languages.[13][14] The phonemicity of the distinction between the two close unrounded vowels, i.e. front *i and back , is also rejected by some.[14]

front back
unrounded rounded unrounded rounded
high *i, *ī /i/ *ü, *ǖ /y/ *ï, *ï̄ /ɯ/ *u, *ū /u/
mid *e, *ē /e/ *ö, *ȫ /ø/~/œ/ (*ë, *ë̄ /ɤ/) *o, *ō /o/
low *ä, *ǟ /ɛ/ *a, *ā /a/

Morphology[edit]

Nouns[edit]

Plurals of nouns were formed using the suffix *-An, but it fell into disuse sometime before the split between Common Turkic and Oghuric. Common Turkic languages today use their respective forms of *-lAr, whereas Chuvash uses -сем, which descends from Proto-Turkic *sāyïn ("every"). Reconstructable possessive suffixes in Proto-Turkic includes 1sg *-m, 2sg *-ŋ, and 3sg *-(s)i, plurals of the possessors are formed by *-z in Common Turkic languages.

Verbs[edit]

The reconstructable suffixes for the verbs include:

  • Aorist: *-Vr
  • Past: *-dI
  • Negative suffix: *-mA
  • 1sg: *-m < *-män < *bän
  • 2sg: *-n < *sän
  • 3sg: *-∅ <
  • 1pl: *-mïz/*-bïz < *bïz
  • 2pl: *-sïz < *sïz

Proto-Turkic also involves derivation with grammatical voice suffixes, as in cooperative *körüš, middle *körün, passive *körül, and causative *körtkür.

Vocabulary[edit]

Pronouns[edit]

Proto-Turkic Turkish Azeri Turkmen Kazakh Chuvash Karakhanid Uzbek Uyghur Bashkir Kyrgyz Sakha (Yakut)
I *bë,[15][16] *bän-[17][18] ben, ban- mən men men, ma- e-pĕ, man- men, man- men men min men min
you *së,[15][19] *sän- sen, san- sən sen sen, sa-, siz e-sĕ, san- sen, san- sen, siz sen, siz hin sen, siz en
he/she/it *an-, *o-l on-, o on-, o ol on-, o-l un-, văl an-, ol u u ul al kini, ol[20]
we *bïŕ biz biz biz biz pir- biz biz biz beð biz bihigi
you (plural) *sïŕ siz siz siz sender, sizder sir- siz sizlar senler, siler, sizler heð siler, sizder ehigi
they *o-lar[21] on-lar onlar olar olar vĕsem, vĕsen- olar ular ular ular alar kiniler, ollor

Numbers[edit]

Proto-Turkic Oghur Turkic Common Turkic
Volga Bulgar Chuvash Karakhanid Turkish Azeri Turkmen Kazakh Uzbek Uyghur Bashkir Kyrgyz Sakha (Yakut)
1 *bï̄r بىر (bīr) pĕr bīr bir bir bir bir bir bir ber bir biir
2 *ëkï اَكِ (eki) ikĕ ikkī iki iki iki eki ikki ikki ike eki ikki
3 *üç وج (več) viśĕ üč üç üç üç üş uch üç ös üč üs
4 *dȫrt تُوات (tüvet) tăvată tȫrt dört dörd dört tört to'rt tört dürt tört tüört
5 *bë̄ĺ(k) بيال (byel) pilĕk bḗš beş beş bäş bes besh beş biş beş bies
6 *altı اَلطِ (altï) ultă altï̄ altı altı alty altı olti alte altı altı alta
7 *jëtï جىَاتِ (čyeti) śičĕ yétī yedi yeddi ýedi jeti yetti yetti yete jeti sette
8 *säkïŕ ڛَكِڔ (sekir) sakăr sekiz sekiz səkkiz sekiz segiz sakkiz sekkiz higeð segiz аğıs
9 *tokuŕ طُخِڔ (tuxïr) tăhăr tokūz dokuz doqquz dokuz toğız to'qqiz toqquz tuğıð toguz toğus
10 *ōn وان (van) vun ōn on on on on o'n on un on uon
20 *jëgïrmï جِيِرم (čiyirim) śirĕm yegirmī yirmi iyirmi ýigrimi jıyırma yigirma yigrime yegerme jıyırma süürbe
30 *otuŕ وطر (vutur) văḍăr ottuz otuz otuz otuz otız o'ttiz ottuz utıð otuz otut
40 *kırk حرح (xïrïx) hĕrĕh kïrk kırk qırx kyrk qırıq qirq qiriq qırq kırk -
50 *ällïg اَلُّ (ellü) allă ellig elli əlli elli eliw ellik ellik ille elüü -
60 *ältmıĺ - utmăl altmïš altmış altmış altmyş alpıs oltmish atmiş altmış altımış -
70 *jëtmïĺ - śitmĕl yetmiš yetmiş yetmiş ýetmiş jetpis yetmish etmiş yetmeş jetimiş -
80 *säkïŕ ōn سكر وان (sekir van) sakărvun seksȫn seksen səksən segsen seksen sakson seksen hikhän seksen ağıs uon
90 *tokuŕ ōn طوخر وان (toxïr van) tăhărvun toksōn doksan doxsan dogsan toqsan to'qson toqsan tuqhan tokson toğus uon
100 *jǖŕ جُور (čǖr) śĕr yǖz yüz yüz ýüz jüz yuz yüz yöð jüz süüs
1000 *bıŋ - pin miŋ bin min müň mıñ ming miñ meñ miñ muñ

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Robbeets & Savelyev 2017, p. 127.
  2. ^ The Turkic Languages Lars Johanson, Éva Á. Csató · 2015
  3. ^ The Turks in World History Carter V. Findley · 2005, p.17
  4. ^ Yunusbayev, Bayazit; Metspalu, Mait; Metspalu, Ene; Valeev, Albert (21 April 2015). "The Genetic Legacy of the Expansion of Turkic-Speaking Nomads across Eurasia". PLOS Genetics. 11 (4): e1005068. doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1005068. ISSN 1553-7404. PMC 4405460. PMID 25898006. "The origin and early dispersal history of the Turkic peoples is disputed, with candidates for their ancient homeland ranging from the Transcaspian steppe to Manchuria in Northeast Asia."
  5. ^ Robbeets, Martine; Savelyev, Alexander (21 December 2017). Language Dispersal Beyond Farming. John Benjamins Publishing Company. p. 127. ISBN 978-90-272-6464-0. "It is generally agreed among historians and linguists that the starting point of the Turkic migrations was located in the eastern part of the Central Asian steppe (see, e.g., Golden 1992, Kljastornyj & Suktanov 2009; Menges 1995:55). Turkologists use various definitions for describing the Proto-Turkic homeland, but most indicate more or less the same region. While Janhunen (1996:26, 2015:293) locates the Proto-Turkic homeland fairly precisely in Eastern Mongolia, Rona-Tas (1998:88), in a rather general manner, places the last habitat of the Turkic speakers before the disintegration of the family "in west and central Siberia and in the region south of it." The latter localization overlaps in large part with that proposed by Tenisev et al. (2006), who associate the Proto-Turkic urheimat with the vast area stretching from the Ordos Desert in Inner Mongolia to the foothils of the Sayan-Altai mountains in Southern Siberia."
  6. ^ Janhunen, Juha (2013). "Personal pronouns in Core Altaic". In Martine Irma Robbeets; Hubert Cuyckens (eds.). Shared Grammaticalization: With special focus on the Transeurasian languages. John Benjamins. p. 223. ISBN 9789027205995.
  7. ^ Róna-Tas 1998, pp. 69.
  8. ^ Róna-Tas 1998, pp. 78.
  9. ^ Róna-Tas 1998, pp. 71–72.
  10. ^ a b Dybo, A. V. (2007). Chronology of Turkic languages and linguistic contacts of early Turks (PDF) (in Russian). Moscow. p. 770. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2005-03-11.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  11. ^ Róna-Tas 1998, p. 71.
  12. ^ Johanson 1998, p. 97.
  13. ^ Róna-Tas 1998, p. 70.
  14. ^ a b Johanson 1998, pp. 90–91.
  15. ^ a b Georg, Stefan (2004-12-22). "Review of Starostin, Dybo, Mudrak, Gruntov & Glumov (2003): Etymological Dictionary of the Altaic Languages". Diachronica. 21 (2): 445–450. doi:10.1075/dia.21.2.12geo. ISSN 0176-4225.
  16. ^ "Turkic etymology : Query result". starling.rinet.ru. Retrieved 2021-09-23.
  17. ^ "Reconstruction:Proto-Turkic/ben", Wiktionary, 2021-08-20, retrieved 2021-09-23
  18. ^ "Proto-Turkic/Pronouns and numbers - Wikibooks, open books for an open world". en.wikibooks.org. Retrieved 2021-09-23.
  19. ^ "Turkic etymology : Query result". starling.rinet.ru. Retrieved 2021-09-23.
  20. ^ In Sakha (AKA Yakut), kini(ler) is used for animate referents whereas ol(lor) is used for inanimate referents. While the latter is cognate with other third person forms given here, the former descends from Proto-Turkic *gëntü, *këntü '(him/her)self' and is thus cognate, for example, with Turkish kendi.
  21. ^ This pronoun are constructed by adding a plural suffix to *o-l "he/she/it". However, an Oghur language Chuvash uses a completely different plural suffix that lacks vowel harmony, -sem. According to Róna-Tas (1998), -sem is a late replacement to *-lAr.

Sources[edit]

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]