This article is about a branch of languages. 3 million native speakers and assuming 6. 5 million native speakers in the Netherlands and Germany. 2nd century BC, to settle in the area of today’s northern Germany and synchronic vs diachronic linguistics pdf Denmark.
Germanic speakers, including also making up the bulk of West Germanic speakers. The approximate extent of Germanic languages in the early 10th century. Their exact relation is difficult to determine from the sparse evidence of runic inscriptions. Sweden as the original location of the northern group. AD 160, are the oldest Germanic writing. The East Germanic languages were marginalized from the end of the Migration period.
North, and, although both extremes are considered German, they are hardly mutually intelligible. The southernmost varieties had completed the second sound shift, while the northern varieties remained unaffected by the consonant shift. The North Germanic languages, on the other hand, remained unified until well past 1000 AD, and in fact the mainland Scandinavian languages still largely retain mutual intelligibility into modern times. Germanic languages possess a number of defining features compared with other Indo-European languages. This is responsible for the reduction of most of the basic English, Norwegian, Danish and Swedish words into monosyllables, and the common impression of modern English and German as consonant-heavy languages. Generally, back vowels were fronted, and front vowels were raised. Large numbers of vowel qualities.
13 distinctions among long vowels alone, one of the largest such inventories in the world. Germanic languages to various degrees. Some words with etymologies that are difficult to link to other Indo-European families but with variants that appear in almost all Germanic languages. Proto-Germanic had only five distinct vowel qualities, although there were more actual vowel phonemes because length and possibly nasality were phonemic. In modern German, long-short vowel pairs still exist but are also distinct in quality. Proto-Germanic probably had a more general S-O-V-I word order. The subgroupings of the Germanic languages are defined by shared innovations.
It is important to distinguish innovations from cases of linguistic conservatism. This suggests it was an areal change. Labiovelar consonants become plain velar when non-initial. That caused a steady erosion of vowels in unstressed syllables. The following table shows the main outcomes of Proto-Germanic vowels and consonants in the various older languages. For vowels, only the outcomes in stressed syllables are shown. If one is omitted, the previous one applies.
All languages except Gothic were affected, although there are various exceptions in all the languages. All diphthongs occur both long and short. Old English was the earliest and most-affected language, with nearly all vowels affected. However, later evidence suggests that other back vowels were also affected, perhaps still sub-phonemically in Old High German times. In Old High German, all voiced fricatives hardened into stops.
Note that most modern Germanic languages have lost most of the inherited inflectional morphology as a result of the steady attrition of unstressed endings triggered by the strong initial stress. Germanic inflectional system, with four noun cases, three genders, and well-marked verbs. English and Afrikaans are at the other extreme, with almost no remaining inflectional morphology. Originally, adjectives in Proto-Indo-European followed the same declensional classes as nouns. These names were based on the appearance of the two sets of endings in modern German. In German, the distinctive case endings formerly present on nouns have largely disappeared, with the result that the load of distinguishing one case from another is almost entirely carried by determiners and adjectives. As a result, the definite endings were thought of as too “weak” to carry inflectional meaning and in need of “strengthening” by the presence of an accompanying determiner, while the indefinite endings were viewed as “strong” enough to indicate the inflectional categories even when standing alone.