The AUSTROASIATIC LANGUAGES, in recent classifications synonymous
with MON–KHMER, are a large language family of continental
Ethnologue identifies 168 Austroasiatic languages. These form
thirteen established families (plus perhaps Shompen , which is poorly
attested, as a fourteenth), which have traditionally been grouped into
two, as Mon–Khmer and
* 1 Typology * 2 Proto-language
* 3 Internal classification
* 3.1 Diffloth (1974) * 3.2 Ilia Peiros (2004) * 3.3 Gérard Diffloth (2005) * 3.4 Previously existent branches * 3.5 Sidwell (2009, 2011)
* 4 Writing systems * 5 Austroasiatic migrations * 6 See also * 7 Notes * 8 References * 9 Sources * 10 Further reading * 11 External links
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Regarding word structure,
Main article: Proto-Mon–Khmer language
Much work has been done on the reconstruction of Proto-Mon–Khmer in Harry L. Shorto 's Mon–Khmer Comparative Dictionary. Little work has been done on the Munda languages , which are not well documented. With their demotion from a primary branch, Proto-Mon–Khmer becomes synonymous with Proto-Austroasiatic.
Paul Sidwell (2005) reconstructs the consonant inventory of Proto-Mon–Khmer as follows:
*p *t *c *k *ʔ
*b *d *ɟ *ɡ
*ɓ *ɗ *ʄ
*m *n *ɲ *ŋ
*w *l, *r *j
This is identical to earlier reconstructions except for *ʄ. *ʄ is
better preserved in the
Katuic languages , which Sidwell has
specialized in. Sidwell (2011) suggests that the likely homeland of
Austroasiatic is the middle
Linguists traditionally recognize two primary divisions of
Mon–Khmer languages of
Each of the families that is written in boldface type below is accepted as a valid clade. By contrast, the relationships between these families within Austroasiatic are debated. In addition to the traditional classification, two recent proposals are given, neither of which accepts traditional "Mon–Khmer" as a valid unit. However, little of the data used for competing classifications has ever been published, and therefore cannot be evaluated by peer review.
In addition, there are suggestions that additional branches of Austroasiatic might be preserved in substrata of Acehnese in Sumatra (Diffloth), the Chamic languages of Vietnam, and the Land Dayak languages of Borneo (Adelaar 1995).
Diffloth 's widely cited original classification, now abandoned by
Diffloth himself, is used in
* Korku * KHERWARIAN
* KHARIA–JUANG * KORAPUT MUNDA
* Eastern Mon–Khmer
* KHMER (Cambodian) * PEARIC * BAHNARIC * KATUIC * VIETIC (includes Vietnamese)
* Northern Mon–Khmer
* KHASI (
* Southern Mon–Khmer
* ASLIAN (Malaya )
* NICOBARESE (
ILIA PEIROS (2004)
Peiros is a lexicostatistic classification, based on percentages of shared vocabulary. This means that languages can appear to be more distantly related than they actually are due to language contact . Indeed, when Sidwell (2009a) replicated Peiros's study with languages known well enough to account for loans, he did not find the internal (branching) structure below.
* Nuclear Mon–Khmer
* Mangic (Mang + Palyu ) (perhaps in Northern MK) * VIETIC (perhaps in Northern MK)
* Northern Mon–Khmer
* PALAUNGIC * KHMUIC
* Central Mon–Khmer
* KHMER dialects * PEARIC
* KATUIC * BAHNARIC
GéRARD DIFFLOTH (2005)
Diffloth compares reconstructions of various clades, and attempts to classify them based on shared innovations, though like other classifications the evidence has not been published. As a schematic, we have:
Or in more detail,
* MUNDA LANGUAGES (India)
* KORAPUT: 7 languages
* KHARIAN–JUANG: 2 languages
Korku KHERWARIAN: 12 languages
* Khasi– Khmuic languages (Northern Mon–Khmer)
* KHASIAN : 3 languages of eastern
* KHMUIC : 13 languages of Laos and Thailand
* Palaungo-Pakanic languages
PAKANIC or PALYU : 4 or 5 languages of southern
* Nuclear Mon–Khmer languages
* Khmero- Vietic languages (Eastern Mon–Khmer)
* Vieto- Katuic languages ?
VIETIC : 10 languages of
* Khmero-Bahnaric languages
* BAHNARIC : 40 languages of Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. * Khmeric languages
The KHMER dialects of Cambodia, Thailand, and Vietnam. PEARIC : 6 languages of Cambodia.
* Nico- Monic languages (Southern Mon–Khmer)
* NICOBARESE : 6 languages of the
* Asli-Monic languages
ASLIAN : 19 languages of peninsular Malaysia and Thailand. MONIC : 2 languages, the Mon language of Burma and the Nyahkur language of Thailand.
This family tree is consistent with recent studies of migration of Y-Chromosomal haplogroup O2a1-M95 . However, the dates obtained from by Zhivotovsky method DNA studies are several times older than that given by linguists. The route map of the people with haplogroup O2a1-M95, speaking this language can be seen in this link. Other geneticists criticise the Zhivotovsky method.
PREVIOUSLY EXISTENT BRANCHES
Roger Blench (2009) also proposes that there might have been other primary branches of Austroasiatic that are now extinct, based on substrate evidence in modern-day languages.
* PRE-CHAMIC LANGUAGES (the languages of coastal
Other languages with proposed Austroasiatic substrata are:
* JIAMAO , based on evidence from the register system of Jiamao, a Hlai language (Thurgood 1992). Jiamao is known for its highly aberrant vocabulary.
SIDWELL (2009, 2011)
Paul Sidwell (2009a), in a lexicostatistical comparison of 36 languages which are well-known enough to exclude loan words, finds little evidence for internal branching, though he did find an area of increased contact between the Bahnaric and Katuic languages, such that languages of all branches apart from the geographically distant Munda and Nicobarese show greater similarity to Bahnaric and Katuic the closer they are to those branches, without any noticeable innovations common to Bahnaric and Katuic. He therefore takes the conservative view that the thirteen branches of Austroasiatic should be treated as equidistant on current evidence. Sidwell & Blench (2011) discuss this proposal in more detail, and note that there is good evidence for a Khasi–Palaungic node, which could also possibly be closely related to Khmuic. If this would the case, Sidwell & Blench suggest that Khasic may have been an early offshoot of Palaungic that had spread westward. Sidwell padding:0;">
Other than Latin-based alphabets, many
* Khom script (used for a short period in the early 20th century for indigenous languages in Laos)
According to Chaubey et al., "AA speakers in
* ^ Sometimes also as Austro-Asiatic or Austroasian
* ^ See also:
* Dienekes Anthropology Blog, Origin of Indian Austroasiatic speakers
* Razib Khan (2010), Sons of the conquerors: the story of India?
* Razib Khan (2013), Phylogenetics implies Austro-Asiatic are
* ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds.
Glottolog 3.0 . Jena, Germany: Max Planck
Institute for the Science of Human History.
* ^ Bradley (2012) notes, MK in the wider sense including the Munda
languages of eastern
* Adams, K. L. (1989). Systems of numeral classification in the Mon–Khmer, Nicobarese and Aslian subfamilies of Austroasiatic. Canberra, A.C.T., Australia: Dept. of Linguistics, Research School of Pacific Studies, Australian National University. ISBN 0-85883-373-5 * Alves, Mark J. (2014). Mon-Khmer. In Rochelle Lieber and Pavel Stekauer (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Derivational Morphology, 520-544. Oxford: Oxford University Press. * Alves, Mark J. (2015). Morphological functions among Mon-Khmer languages: beyond the basics. In N. J. Enfield et al. (2010), "Population Genetic Structure in Indian Austroasiatic Speakers: The Role of Landscape Barriers and Sex-Specific Admixture", Mol Biol Evol, 28: 1013–1024, PMC 3355372 , PMID 20978040 , doi :10.1093/molbev/msq288 * Diffloth, Gérard (2005). "The contribution of linguistic palaeontology and Austro-Asiatic". in Laurent Sagart, Roger Blench and Alicia Sanchez-Mazas, eds. The Peopling of East Asia: Putting Together Archaeology, Linguistics and Genetics. 77–80. London: Routledge Curzon. ISBN 0-415-32242-1 * Filbeck, D. (1978). T'in: a historical study. Pacific linguistics, no. 49. Canberra: Dept. of Linguistics, Research School of Pacific Studies, Australian National University. ISBN 0-85883-172-4 * Hemeling, K. (1907). Die Nanking Kuanhua. (German language) * Jenny, Mathias and Paul Sidwell , eds (2015). The Handbook of Austroasiatic Languages. Leiden: Brill. * Peck, B. M., Comp. (1988). An Enumerative Bibliography of South Asian Language Dictionaries. * Peiros, Ilia. 1998. Comparative Linguistics in Southeast Asia. Pacific Linguistics Series C, No. 142. Canberra: Australian National University. * Shorto, Harry L. edited by Sidwell, Paul, Cooper, Doug and Bauer, Christian (2006). A Mon–Khmer comparative dictionary. Canberra: Australian National University. Pacific Linguistics. ISBN 0-85883-570-3 * Shorto, H. L. Bibliographies of Mon–Khmer and Tai Linguistics. London oriental bibliographies, v. 2. London: Oxford University Press, 1963. * Sidwell, Paul (2005). "Proto-Katuic Phonology and the Sub-grouping of Mon–Khmer Languages". In Sidwell, ed., SEALSXV: papers from the 15th meeting of the Southeast Asian Linguistic Society. * Sidwell, Paul (2009a). The Austroasiatic Central Riverine Hypothesis. Keynote address, SEALS, XIX. * Sidwell, Paul (2009b). Classifying the Austroasiatic languages: history and state of the art. LINCOM studies in Asian linguistics, 76. Munich: Lincom Europa. * Zide, Norman H., and Milton E. Barker. (1966) Studies in Comparative Austroasiatic Linguistics, The Hague: Mouton (Indo-Iranian monographs, v. 5.). * Zhang; et al. (2015), "Y-chromosome diversity suggests southern origin and Paleolithic backwave migration of Austro-Asiatic speakers from eastern Asia to the Indian subcontinent", Nature Scientific Reports, 5: 1548, doi :10.1038/srep15486
* Mann, Noel, Wendy Smith and Eva Ujlakyova. 2009. Linguistic clusters of Mainland Southeast Asia: an overview of the language families. Chiang Mai: Payap University.
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