Talk:Proto-Greek language

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A very old story[edit]

This text was constructed by the Indian scholar S.K. Sen, and it is supposed to be a proto-Sanskrit text based on old Indic *PIE roots. I (sort of) translated it hastily into Ancient Greek, taking a liberty or two (i.e. using ρηξ, a Latin-derived Byzantine neologism, because the probaby pre-Greek βασιλεύς has supplanted the IE-derived equivalent). Please feel free to contribute, especially in the items I have question-marked:

To, régho:n ?e ?est. So nputlós ?e ?est. So régho:n súxnum éwelt.
Kwo kwe re:ks eeto. Kwos apaids eeto. Kwos reeks huion gwoleto.
Πο(τέ), ρηξ ήτο. Ος άπαις(?) ήτο. Ο ρήξ υιόν εβούλετο.
Once, there was a king. He was childless. The king wanted a son.

So tósyo gHeutérm prksket: “Súxnus moi gnxyeto:m!”
Ος τούτου χυτήρα ηρώτα (?): "Υιός μοι γένοιτο!"
He asked his priest: “May a son be born to me!”

So gHeuté:r tom réghonm ?e wewkWet: “Ihgeswo deiwóm Wérunom”.
Ο χυτήρ τωι ρήγαι είπε: "Ίκεσο θεόν Ουρανόν"
The priest said to the king: “Pray to the god Varuna”.

So régho:n deiwóm Werunom xúpo-sesore nu deiwóm ihgeto.
Ο ρήξ θεόν Ουρανόν υφεώρα(?) νυν θέον ίκετο.
The king approached the god Varuna to pray now to the god.

“KludHí moi, pxtér Wérune!”
"Κλύθι μοι, Πάτερ Ουρανέ!"
“Hear me, father Varuna!”

Deiwós Wérunos diwósyo ?e ni-gWext.
Θεός Ουρανός κατά δίος ήκε.
The god Varuna came down from heaven.

“KWid wélsi?” “Wélmi súxnum.”
"Τι βούλεσαι?" "Βούλομαι υιόν"
“What do you want?” “I want a son.”

“Tod ?éstu,” wéwkWet louqós deiwós Wérunos.
"Τούτο έστω," είπε λευκός θεός Ουρανός.
“Let this be so,” said the bright god Varuna.

Reghnós pótnix súxnum gégone.
Ρηγός πότνια υιόν γέγονε.
The king’s lady bore a son.

IMHO this is about 50% intelligible by any Greek and almost fully intelligible to an educated Greek Chronographos 8 July 2005 15:00 (UTC)

very nice! now do it in Proto-Greek (mainly inserting the labiovelars and the spirants). The king could be the wanaks (in Sanskrit, the vanij). dab () 8 July 2005 15:13 (UTC)
Hey, Mr. Lazy Boy, am I to do everything around here? :-P Chronographos 8 July 2005 15:18 (UTC)

Hey, what do you know, I can read ancient Greek (of course, the translations help). Decius 8 July 2005 15:17 (UTC)

I am not at all sure about nputlos, húpo-sesore and prcscet. I may have also mixed up some Datives and Accusatives. The rest was pretty darn straightforward - including χυτήρα

= (libation) pourer = priest. Chronographos 8 July 2005 15:24 (UTC)

According to my references, ancient Greek boulomai (boule) is from PIE *gwel, 'to throw, reach', while the PIE equivalent is from PIE *wel, 'to wish, will'. Different roots, but equivalent form and meaning. Decius 8 July 2005 15:45 (UTC)

I think to reach fits just fine, "What to reach?" still makes sense, despite being gramatically incorrect. -- HawkeyE 06:25, July 19, 2005 (UTC)
the point is that the words are supposed to be cognates, which in this case they are not. dab () 07:26, 19 July 2005 (UTC)
True. I'm afraid this will have to stand as license poetique. Chronographos 10:14, 19 July 2005 (UTC)

According to the Wikipedia article on "Uranus": 'Identification of the name Uranous with Indian Varuna is widely rejected. The most probably etymology is from Proto-Greek *vorsanos, from a PIE root *vers "to moisten".' Although I don't know what you gain by comparing rex, a Latin word introduced into Greek thousands of years after its split from what would become Sanskrit, and réecs, the translation is striking and well done. As others say below, Do it in Proto-Greek! --Nick G

the really tricky bit, ignored by Sen, is to get the various particles right; there is no way there was any PIE, or Proto-Greek, text without various sentence-initial particles, and their particularity really makes for the "feel" of the language. Would there be sentence initial nu in Proto-Greek? Would there already be the ubiquitous de? nu regont e'eto. hos de npawidos e'eto? dab () 07:09, 2 September 2005 (UTC)

I wrote the first sentence in proto-greek. Notice also that βούλεσαι is not greek but is probably close to proto-greek: *gwoolesai>*βούλεσαι>*βούλεhαι>*βούλεαι>βούληι -which is the attested form-- 04:37, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

New text[edit]

I agree with you, dab, it's not well done at all. Of course I see the point in including it, if it's the only such reconstruction by an known scholar. Still I'd dare say you'd do a better job reconstructing it yourself. Chronographos 10:30, 25 August 2005 (UTC)

of course, but it would need to be a published reconstruction, I suppose; in any case, the point of including it is to show the evolution of our understanding of Proto-Greek. Schwyzer couldn't have done any better in 1939. dab () 10:39, 25 August 2005 (UTC)
Good point. Chronographos 10:43, 25 August 2005 (UTC)
Athenaioi we would have to reconstruct as Astanwasyoi, but even that is weird, since the Proto-Greeks would not have had any Luwian loanwords (not to mention the paradoxon of addressing Proto-Greeks who have not even set foot on the Greek peninsula as Athenians :) -- maybe we should something Homeric to project back, rather. OR, I know -- since I have just been picking on Nixer over at Talk:Proto-Indo-European_language for inserting his own (re)constructions without explanation. dab () 11:07, 25 August 2005 (UTC)
Where did you read that Athana was a Luwian loan? I was under the impression that it was a non-PIE substrate loan. Chronographos 13:25, 25 August 2005 (UTC)
we cannot be certain, of course, but see the etymology at Athena. I would not be surprised, incidentially, if Luwian had a strong influence, at least, on late Eteocretan. dab () 13:58, 25 August 2005 (UTC)
Not very convincing. Sounds even less plausible than the "N'eith" etymology in Bernal's "Black Athena". Chronographos 14:34, 25 August 2005 (UTC)
I was wondering about that Luwian etymology myself: how strong is this Luwian etymology, what is the evidence for it, etc. From what I know, classical Athena was not associated with the sun in any notable manner (as the Luwian etymology would have it). Pre-classical, I would need to see the evidence. ---Decius 14:17, 25 August 2005 (UTC)
There is no evidence, it's etymology by lack of evidence: She was around since the Mycenaean times at least, she has no known equivalent in IE theology (i.e. wise warrior virgin daughter of Dyeus Piter), no apparent IE etymology, therefore she must have been a loan (by a process of elimination) Chronographos 14:34, 25 August 2005 (UTC)

you could help me out with the Afrocentrists over at Talk:Ancient Egypt, 'graphe :) Anyway, if it's not in Melchert, I have my doubts the astanu etymology has any basis at all; we should probably remove it. But how about astaniya "to cast spells" -> *astana "witch"? The owl gives her away, there is more of a connection to Lilitu than to Sowilo I guess... damn, OR again :)dab () 14:47, 25 August 2005 (UTC)

Afrocentrists? Oh, noooooo, you poor thing .... :-P Chronographos 14:50, 25 August 2005 (UTC)
just don't repeat the "Decius" mistake and blunder over there mockingly; I think he is rather sensitive, and we are just beginning to get along :P dab () 15:03, 25 August 2005 (UTC)
In the case of Talk:Pelasgians, it was no blunder. From the way the etymology is phrased in Athena, I suspect the information was taken from this site [, which is not a good site to take etymologies from. ---Decius 15:08, 25 August 2005 (UTC)

interesting page; unfortunately, he translates simple A-ta-no-dju-wa-ja "divine Athena" as "sun goddess", and afaics there is no real evidence for the "Sun" connection. I was referring to Xg's mistake of losing your favour, in his early days on WP, btw, not your own behaviour vs. assorted crackpots on Pelasgians :) dab () 15:26, 25 August 2005 (UTC)

Shouldn't the German annotations (oder, bzw. Sing.) in Schwyzer be translated to English? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:54, 30 March 2009 (UTC)


Enkyklios, with changing treyes to trees, you seem to claim that invervocalic y was already lost in Proto-Greek, while so far we have stated it was lost between Proto-Greek and Mycenaean. Is this a statement you wanted to make, and, are you sure? dab () 16:40, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

No, I am not sure. As a matter of fact we only know that it was lost somewhere between Proto-Indo-European and Mycenaean. The question is if Proto-Greek is more archaic than all Greek dialects in this respect. It may be, but we simply cannot know. I prefer to reconstruct Proto-Greek as the probable common denominator for all Greek dialects. A compromise would be a parenthesis: *tre(i̯)es. Enkyklios 14:21, 15 February 2006 (UTC)


Enkyklios, I am glad for the update, but we need an explanation of the notation; in particular, what is ç? Maybe do a table of phonemes further up under "phonology"? dab () 09:54, 15 February 2006 (UTC)

As a matter of fact ç is explained in the note beyond the text as a voiceless approximant. I know that this notation is not standard in the handbooks of IE and Greek lignuistics, but is perfect IPA. Enkyklios 14:27, 15 February 2006 (UTC)

The Archanthropus case[edit]

The following paragraph inserted by has been deleted:

Petralona Archanthropus’ Skull
The first proof of native intelligent human presence in Greece came with the discovery of Petralona Archanthropus’ Skull, in Chalcidice in 1960. The skull has been dated to be at least 70,000 years old, by two German scientists: the anthropologist E. Breitinger and the palaeontologist O. Sickenberg. Extensive research on the issue has been done by the anthropologist Dr. Aris Poulianos of Moscow University, who claims this discovery obsoletes the Indo-European theory. 40th anniversary since the discovery of Petralona Archanthropes' Skull Interview with A. Poulianos

The palaeanthopological evidence has no relevance for the discussion of Proto-Greek and does not belong here. Whatever credentials Poulianos may have as an anthropologist, he is certainly not an expert on historical linguistics, as it is obvious from his comments in the interview. Even if we were ready to accept his hypothesis of a genetic continuity from palaeolithicum until the present time (most anthropologists aren't), it does not necessarily follow that there was a linguistic continuity as well. We don't know what language that poor Archanthropus fellow spoke. Unless Poulianos can detect a fossilised Proto-Greek paradigm somewhere in the skull, the remains cannot possibly prove that the Greek language is authochthonous rather than a later import from the northeast or the east. Enkyklios 12:54, 16 May 2006 (UTC)

I think the presence of a skull means merely that human populations came and went, maybe with the opportunity of mixing. As you seem to be suggesting, Greek is a fairly new language, arising independently, all by itself, without having been influenced by other peoples in the area, whether by mixing or by accident? (talk) 19:17, 3 August 2009 (UTC)

Approximants in proto-Greek[edit]

Shouldn't the reconstruction of ὅτι be ʍokwid instead of çokwid? Isn't [ç] a fricative? Someone could argue that *sy would sound more like a [ɕ]. Is there a character for describing unvoiced [j]? --Kupirijo 16:20, 3 August 2006 (UTC)

Translation issue[edit]

I suppose from the names you people use to sign in, you must be greek like me right? (if not the rest is pointless). Any way, the greek section of this page is nothing comparing to the english. I do speak english fluently but i can't cope with an english text full of difficult linguistic terms. Is there a chance someone with the appropriate knowledge on the subject enrich the greek page?

Examples would be useful in the "phonology" section[edit]

Many sound-changes are listed in the phonology section. It would be really useful to see at least one example of each change, especially as it isn't clear to non-specialists (like me) exactly what each change consists of. For example, does "Aspiration of /s/ -> /h/ intervocalically" mean that VSV -> VHV or VSV -> VSHV, or what?

The discussion of sus "sow" and dasus "dense" is unclear to me. Are sus and dasus the same in PIE and PG? If so, state this. If not, give the form of each word in each language. Cheers. Grover cleveland (talk) 02:18, 24 April 2008 (UTC)

Phomeme Chart[edit]

Wow, thanks guys! But could we get a phoneme chart for vowels and consonants like all other language>phonology articles have, even the reconstructed ones? Please keep the historical linguistics rules, though. (talk) 15:13, 6 October 2008 (UTC)

Types of Stress in Proto-Greek[edit]

How many kinds of stress were there in Proto-Greek?

Is there any evidence for the existence of tonal stress, pitch stress, or syllabic stress in Proto-Greek?

The main article could be improved if an entire paragraph were spent on the rise of stress in Greek, and the functions of grave, circumflex, and acute stress in the language. (talk) 16:43, 3 August 2009 (UTC)


Hello all. I can see you are all very knowledgeable on the topic. Could you suggest some sources for studies on Proto-Greek? Thank you! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:42, 6 May 2010 (UTC)

I'm also looking for any published work on the subject, especially a reconstructed lexicon. --Victar (talk) 08:22, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

Sound changes between Proto-Greek and Mycenaean[edit]

If these changes are "complete in Mycenaean", it really should be explained why they are not reconstructed to have occurred by PG, then. (As is currently done for the *sm > (m)m change.) --Trɔpʏliʊmblah 14:04, 29 September 2010 (UTC)

Is Proto Greek only Indoeuropean?[edit]

Beekes treats Proto-Greek as Indoeuropean and considers non-Indoeuropean words as "pre-Greek". This is a prejudice in my opinion and is an obstacle in understanding the Greek language. The Greek language of classical times had both Indoeuropean and non-Indoeueropean words in it. Although the majority of the words were of Indoeuropean derivation, Greek placenames are often not Indoeuropean, at least for the islands and South Greece. Also some Homeric Greek personal names were according to Beekes non-Indoeuropean (he calls them "pre-Greek", which is an oxymoron). Apart from "Achilles" and "Odysseus", one could add among a host of others several deities such as "Nereus" and the "Nereids", related to the word neron, a non-IE-derived word for water. Moreover, I am not aware that there is research on whether the original Greeks (Γραικοί) of Epirus were pure Indoeuropeans, if so at all. In other words, is the word Greek itself an IE word? Which of the two branches of the ancestor languages should be "proto-Greek"? Why should an article on Proto-Greek refer only to the Indoeuropean branch?Skamnelis (talk) 21:43, 14 November 2010 (UTC)

Even though there were a few borrowed words and placenames in Proto-Greek, that doesn't make it non-Indo-European or only partially Indo-European. The vast majority of Proto-Greek was Indo-European. We don't "cross-classify" languages because of a bit of influence from other languages. Greek is genetically an Indo-European language, pure and simple. Placenames especially don't count when it comes to identifying the language family of a language. --Taivo (talk) 22:50, 14 November 2010 (UTC)
@Skamnelis: You could be wrong about nēron (νηρόν), as it's actually meaning "fresh, young" (spring water, νηρόν ὕδωρ - nēron hudōr), from adjective νηρός, νεαρός (nēros, nearos), "new, young", from νέος (neos), "new, fresh, young", Mycenaean Greek ne-wa (in Linear B), PIE *néwos. A Macedonian (talk) 06:01, 15 November 2010 (UTC)
@Taivo: I understand your argument and I am not a specialist but we are defining the word Greek as Indoeuropean, which I am not convinced we know it is. Perhaps it is the wrong word to describe the IE language we are referring to. The word Hellenes may be IE but is the word Greek IE? Moreover, were the Athenians, Corinthians, Thebans, Rhodians, Parians, Naxians, Cretans, Thassians, Lesbians, Ithacans, etc not Greeks, if the words denoting their cities and tribes, their alphabets, etc, are almost certainly non-IE? Among the non-IE words are some very basic words, possibly including anthropos (ΑΝΘΡΩΠΟΣ), phos (ΦΩΣ), neron (ΝΕΡΟΝ), hodos (hΟΔΟΣ), nesos (ΝΗΣΟΣ), basileus (ΒΑΣΙΛΕΥΣ), chronos (ΧΡΟΝΟΣ), horos (hΟΡΟΣ) and choros (ΧΩΡΟΣ). Beekes would add ΘΑΛΑΣΣΑ, ΓΑΙΑ, ΩΚΕΑΝΟΣ. These words are important words in the language. They are among the most primitive.Skamnelis (talk) 06:49, 15 November 2010 (UTC)

This doesn't make sense. A language is not its vocabulary, it has a grammar. The name "Greek" has nothing to do with it, it is the English word for the language. The fact that the word "Greek" has Greek origins doesn't make English a partially Greek language. There is also no such thing as an "IE city", an "IE alphabet", etc. You keep confusing languages with things that are not languages. --dab (𒁳) 07:30, 15 November 2010 (UTC)

Perhaps you are right. I understand that the Greek grammar and indeed the language is treated as IE. But if perhaps the Greeks (Γραικοί), cohabitants of pre-Mycenean and Mycenean Greece, were as a people originally non-IE and spoke originally a non-IE language but later assimilated the grammar and other aspects of the language of Indoeuropeans ("Mycenean", Dorian, Ionian) who arrived at a later time, then we would conclude that the Greeks (Γραικοί) did not speak Greek, not even Proto-Greek, but the newcomers who might have not been Greeks not only spoke Greek but their ancestors who had probably never met the Greeks even spoke Proto-Greek. Apart from the paradox of such a thing, if this were the case, we are also airbrushing a phenomenon similar to the inhabitants of Papua New Guinea adopting English as their common language and it would be an obstacle in understanding how the Greek language became what it became, with all those words that are not IE and the possible influences on the pronunciation, grammar, etc. Since you mentioned grammar, it seems second declension female nouns with an -os ending and male third declension personal names with an -eus ending may have been non-IE. If so, is their declension IE or non-IE?Skamnelis (talk) 18:46, 15 November 2010 (UTC)

"The Proto-Greek language is the assumed last common ancestor of all known varieties of Greek" i.e. a supposed daughter language of PIE. That Greek borrowed a lot of words or that its subsequent speakers were 99% not descendants of PIE-speakers (if we assume a steppe rather than neolithic scenario) didn't change its genetic relationship with PIE though it might have had an impact on its grammar. Yes, to a degree, these are convenient constructs. You should also stop confusing the NAME "Greek" with the LANGUAGE "Greek". The name "Hellenes" was unknown to "Homer", as Thucydides admits, the dialects still existed. (talk) 18:54, 15 November 2010 (UTC)

I am not confusing the language with the people, I simply made a proposal that what we mean by Greek is old convention that stems from a lack of appreciation of who the Greeks were. Coupled with a linear thinking about how the Greek language developed, this has led us to an oxymoron that the Greeks (Γραικοί) may have not been Greek speakers. I was proposing that Proto-Greek should make reference to more than one progenitor of Greek - or at least make some caveat. If it is a convention, there should be a caveat that this convention does not mean that languages develop unaffected by other languages they meet along the way. Incidentally, Homer actually knew of the Hellenes, there are several passages e.g.
"Those again who held Pelasgic Argos, Alos, Alope, and Trachis;
and those of Phthia and Hellas the land of fair women, who were
called Myrmidons, Hellenes, and Achaeans; these had fifty ships,
over which Achilles was in command."
Homer, Iliad Book II
N.B. Italicised capital nouns are almost certainly non-IE.Skamnelis (talk) 23:54, 15 November 2010 (UTC)

Skamnelis, your idea that the people who spoke a non-IE language are somehow "the same" people as the the people partially or even mostly descended for them who spoke an IE language centuries later is an instance of ethnic essentialism. It's a fallacy. You are not your ancestors. --dab (𒁳) 19:09, 15 November 2010 (UTC)

I am not sure where I implied that. I was saying there is an oversimplified thinking about how the Greek language developed, in a linear fashion from a single ancestor, unaffected by other languages. This way of thinking would make us conclude that the original Greeks (Γραικοί), if they were not IE speakers, they would have not spoken Greek. I drew no other arguments.Skamnelis (talk) 23:54, 15 November 2010 (UTC)
The Greek language most certainly derives from Proto-Indo-European in a linear fashion. It is axiomatic in linguistics that languages are influenced by other languages, but that doesn't change their direct linear descent. The only languages with non-linear descent are pidgins and creoles, but Greek is certainly not one of these. You are making a mountain out of a molehill just because you discovered a few words that are not descended from Proto-Indo-European. --Taivo (talk) 01:11, 16 November 2010 (UTC)
Perhaps Beekes has a number for the percentage of the words in Classical Greek that are non-IE. Perhaps it is negligible but it may not be. It is probably less negligible than one might have thought 10 years ago. Anyway, you are the greater experts, I enjoyed the discussion, I bow out. I imagine my kind of Proto-Greeks not only filled the land with their words, and many myths with their heroes, but gave the Greek language most of its uniqueness. Unfortunately, they are not here to protest with me. Skamnelis (talk) 05:18, 16 November 2010 (UTC)

I meant "Hellenes" to describe all Greeks as opposed to the Thessalian Hellenes, I should have clarified, I'm sorry. The same is true of the "Graikoi" (and the case of the Graikoi is even more confused and hard to untangle). In the end, who cares what the original "Graikoi" were or what they spoke? The names "Hellenes" and "Greeks" became certainly attached to the Greek-speaking community at a later date (yes, I know of Aristotle's mention of Graikoi), we don't care about the original people who bore those names in this case, where we are discussing the proto-Greek LANGUAGE, why should we? If the "Graikoi" were originally non-Greek-speaking, would that change anything? There's no doubt that Greek has an important pre-Greek substrate but the modern Greek dialects also have Venetian and Ottoman Turkish loanwords and Latin suffixes and are still the descendants of Koine Greek. (talk) 02:23, 16 November 2010 (UTC)

I was precisely wondering what the original Greeks (Γραικοί) were and what they spoke. They must have spoken Greek, or perhaps Proto-Greek, one would naively assume. I had been trying to work out what might be the correct search term to search for information on their language. I was especially intrigued by the fact that the word Greek itself is probably non I.E. If the language of the original Greeks (Γραικοί) should not be covered in this section, where should one search for it? There is still, four years later, nothing relevant under Greek language or ancient Greek or any other related article. Skamnelis (talk) 08:14, 8 October 2014 (UTC)

A good comparison might be with modern Greek dialects. Pontic, Tsakonian and Griko all come from Koine Greek but diverge because of local greek substrates (Ionic, Doric and Doric respectively), lack of contact with each other, and contact with different languages. Just imagine that the Indo-european daughter languages are these Greek dialects, their respective substrates (and other factors) had an important impact but they are still Indo-european. (talk) 18:56, 16 November 2010 (UTC)

"Who the original Greeks were" is a non-sensical question. No one work up one morning and said, "I'm Greek today. I was something different yesterday." The Hellenic branch of Indo-Europeans evolved over time from the horse tamers of the Ukrainian steppe into the olive growers of the Greek peninsula. It's not always possible to identify what form, between unrecorded early Proto-Indo-European or late Proto-Indo-European or Proto-Greco-Phrygian or Proto-Hellenic, their unrecorded language took. Your question is one of unknowable fancy, not of scientific verifiability or certainty. --Taivo (talk) 13:05, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
By original Greeks, I am referring to the tribe of the Greeks (Γραικοί/Graeci) mentioned by Aristotle in Meteorologica and also on the Parian Chronicle, prior to the generalisation of the use of that name to all those tribes that participated in the Olympic Amphictyony. Homer, for example, does not call those who campaigned together against Troy as Greeks or Hellenes. These are names of individual tribes. So did those original Greeks, the first to be referred to under that name, speak Greek? A reference would suffice to guide myself and other readers. If, on the other hand, some expert who has considered the language of the Mycenean period has proposed that the language of the Greeks (that distinct ancient tribe) cannot be known, a reference would be helpful. It would be odd, indeed, if we cannot know whether the Greeks spoke Greek. Skamnelis (talk) 11:43, 16 October 2014 (UTC)

Alexikoua's map[edit]

None of the links of the sources say anything about Proto-Greek being spoken in Albania, but Alexikoua added the region in his map. So after checking page 56 of Georgiev it seems that it was spoken in coastal areas i.e not all of southern Albania, so if he adds Georgiev back he should exclude those areas. Georgiev says "up to Aulon", which means that Aulon is the northermost area.--— ZjarriRrethues — talk 12:34, 3 May 2011 (UTC)

The source is clear on this issue: it says "up to Aulon" excactly what the map shows. It doesn't include areas north of Aulon/Vlore. What we should consider is that this is a reconstruction by Georgiev, based on linguistic criteria: especially on toponyms: I have also included the Pindus and Ceraunian mountains regions per his definition of the Proto-Greek area [[1]] Alexikoua (talk) 00:07, 4 May 2011 (UTC)
Nevertheless I've moved the borders south at some parts, although the northernmost part of Pindus remains that way outside the area.Alexikoua (talk) 06:56, 4 May 2011 (UTC)

Source for Modern Proto-Greek Reconstruction?[edit]

The source/meaning/purpose of the "Modern" column in the Proto-Greek Reconstruction chart is mysterious to me. What is the source? Dmoerner (talk) 22:32, 17 December 2012 (UTC)

Late reply to this, but I've actually gone ahead and removed the whole section. Since the original Schwyzer reconstruction appears to be heavily outdated, while the "modern" one seems to be a self-made one devised by a Wikipedian, and thus WP:OR (though no doubt quite competent and knowledgeable [2]), there isn't really much benefit in having either of them. (Plus, the whole idea of taking "famous lines from classical literature" and projecting them back into the language of a much earlier time period is dubious in itself. It's a bit as if you wanted to demonstrate what Middle English was like, and did that by taking lines from, say, Beatles songs, "translated" back into the forms of Chaucer). Fut.Perf. 08:29, 11 October 2014 (UTC)

Development of the accent[edit]

According to the article, the accentual restrictions of later Greek, and the circumflex accent, are all later developments that did not occur in Proto-Greek. But the article doesn't say much about the developments that did happen. Or did nothing at all change between PIE and PG? CodeCat (talk) 15:09, 8 September 2014 (UTC)

Proto-Greek, the Greco-Armenian connection etc.[edit]

Although my time is quite limited (lots of real life obligations)and I cannot comment in extenso, the Greco-Armenian connection put forward in the early 1920' or 1930's (really can't check it out and sincerely don't remember right now exactly when or by whom this was proposed; was it Pedersen?) has been seriously assailed some 2 decades now and is no longer considered as plausible as it used to be (to say the least). When it comes to the notorious phylogenetic trees, Proto-Greek has also been proposed as a sibling or ancestor of almost all of Kretchmer's so called Balkan Sprachbund languages including the hottly debated but still spurious Ancient Macedonian, as well as Phrygian, Dacian, Thracian, Illyrian and whatnot. Such seductively attractive hypotheses are mighty interesting but alas they do not belong in this article given the current poor state of attestation of all these extinct and largely epigraphically unattested languages (barring the Phrygian language all others are mostly known only indirectly through dubious onomastica, anthroponymy & toponymy). So, let's keep it simple for the time being. Everyone interested in the vagarities of these languages can easily check the relevant links. I will come back with more precise and up to date literature to resolve any doubts in due time. The Greco-Armenian hypothesis needs a lot of refurbishing to start with. Thanks everybody in advance. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Giorgos Tzimas (talkcontribs) 23:03, 19 November 2014‎

You know, 3000 BC is pretty close to late PIE anyway, and nobody disputes Greek and Armenian both grew out of that. Afaik, "Greco-Armenian" as a hypothesis is doing quite well, but it isn't really that exciting, because it boils down to some degree of "prolongued contact" over a couple of centuries after whatever cutoff you prefer to set on "late PIE". The idea here is, of course, that Armenian is substantially derived from Phrygian. Otherwise, as you say, we have really nothing to go on for the "Armenian" side of the equation. Armenian was exposed to some rather weird substrate and/or superstrate influence, but its core it may very well derive from Phrygian. Of course, the topic belongs on Greco-Armenian, and this page should only briefly mention the point. It should also not place undue weight on a random paper from 2003 doing some things with Swadesh lists. This was interesting as a "proof of concept" back in 2003, but it hardly replaces 200 years of philologists' research. --dab (𒁳) 19:32, 28 March 2016 (UTC)

I had almost forgotten my last visit here and to be frank I have no serious objections to what you are saying. Back in 2014, When I wrote my comment the contents of the article were quite different. The text gave a false but rather strong impression of certainty re the issues at hand. The importance and the significance of the Greco-Armenian hypothesis was at the time overstated, to say the least, and there was no discussion about the problems surrounding it. Any further or detailed contextualisation of this particular topic should indeed go to Greco-Armenian, but I do insist that there is nowadays much less to flesh out from this connection than what was believed back in the '30s, while the once overemphasized connection is now much more nuanced in the literature. Phrygian and its tentative relation with Ancient Macedonian deserve more attention if the Greco-Armenian connection is to make any sense to the reader. At any rate, the article, as it stands now, is much much better. (Ironically, I feel that the proposed relationship between Proto-Greek, Ancient Macedonian, Phrygian etc. has now been watered down more than was necessary). Be that as it may, I do believe that this, as well as many other similar articles, need some toning down on linguistic jargon if they are to be of any use to lay readers; specialists can always resort to relevant literature. Kind Regards.--Giorgos Tzimas (talk) 20:56, 28 March 2016 (UTC)

yes, I realize your comment was more than a year old. Thanks for replying. The current article caught my attention for claiming "divergent views" of scholars regarding the age of Proto-Greek. I do not think this is the case. "Late 3rd millennium" seems a pretty solid consensus. The Greco-Armenian thing, well, it is what it is. It's interesting enough, but not really in the scope of this article. Macedonian and Phrygian are, it would seem, practically sister languages of Greek, but not enough is known about them to prove or disprove this to sceptics. --dab (𒁳) 06:46, 29 March 2016 (UTC)

It is I who should thank you for bringing this article to a better shape, I was planning to do it myself, but I was (and still am) caught up with other obligations... Ancient Macedonian (I prefer this term just for precision purposes -- no nationalist axe to grind here) and Phrygian would be a higly welcome addition in general. I do hope that future discoveries will improve their level of attestation in the linguistic record and if per chance such discoveries occur I am pretty sure that they will give an incredibly interesting impetus in the now almost stagnant studies -- not to mention the insight to the already extremely intriguing Proto-Greek and the milieu out of which it emerged. Of course the final centuries of the 3rd millenium as a starting pooint represent more than a mere consensus. I consider all other (defunct) theories utterly fringe. On a side note, some of the issues raised by the fellow editor underneath re phonology are quite valid and deserve more attention. Phonology is not my strong suit, despite my partial background on comparative linguistics, and I have precious little time to tackle the issues on my own. Any contributions would be extremely welcome. I have only the general introduction by Beeks here with me and and it is unfortunately too general for such a discussion. At any rate,thanks again!--Giorgos Tzimas (talk) 13:44, 29 March 2016 (UTC)

Moving description of Post-Proto-Greek changes[edit]

Some post-Proto-Greek sound changes are discussed here. They should be moved to either Mycenaean Greek § Phonology, Mycenaean Greek § Greek features, or Ancient Greek phonology § Sound changes, depending on when they occurred. And eventually, though this is a more involved project, they should be described briefly in History of Greek, along with the sound changes of all other periods of Greek.

Also, does anyone know sources for the sound changes between the time of Mycenaean and Ancient Greek described in this article? I need some to add to Ancient Greek phonology, and to allow me to describe them in more detail. — Eru·tuon 20:30, 24 January 2015 (UTC)