News:

Welcome to our site!

Main Menu

Ancient Languages: Lithuanian

Started by Shiranu, December 20, 2021, 12:15:04 PM

Previous topic - Next topic

Shiranu


When thinking of ancient languages, you would normally think of Greek, Egyptian, Sanskrit, Hebrew... but one that doesn't get nearly enough credit is Lithuanian, which is believed to be the closest European link to the mother Indo-European language. What this means is that it has changed the least since the original Proto-Indo-European (PIE) peoples settled/spread their culture from Europe to India some 6000 years ago during the late Neolithic Era; to put that into perspective, that is roughly 3000 years before Ancient Greece or 1000 years before the first Egyptian Dynasty.


In effect, Lithuanian is about the closest living language that allows us to hear what the original horsemen who swept from the steppes and settled from central Europe to India would have sounded like, and it is also immensely useful in trying to recreate and understand the PIE language by comparing it's words to other ancient languages like Sanskrit and Indo-Persian (both of which share many grammar rules and similar words for the same thing [particularly in regards to religion, giving us a glimpse of how European paganism evolved alongside Hinduism from the same original beliefs].

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cclH4NwxnUU



Every day is a good day to *remove from server* an autocrat.

SGOS

I have at times, wondered about which of the modern languages have changed the least from their inception, but Lithuanian never came to mind.

As an afterthought, how does one determine the point of the inception of a language?  The inception of Lithuanian may have been from from some Indo-European mother language, but what was the inception of that language and the one before it?  Clearly, we must look to the Bible and understand it through the story of the tower of Babel.  Only then does it become simple and make complete sense... if you are four years old.

I suspect there were at least as many original language inceptions as their were tribes of humans at one time, or maybe the first language began with earlier humanoids.  One thing I'm sure of is that none of us talk like our ancestors did, at least not the language part of talking.

Shiranu

QuoteThe inception of Lithuanian may have been from from some Indo-European mother language, but what was the inception of that language and the one before it?

Unfortunately we don't really know, that language is one that has been utterly lost to time (other than figuring out common grammar and spelling rules from the languages it birthed) so it's utterly impossible to draw a line of distinction.

QuoteClearly, we must look to the Bible and understand it through the story of the tower of Babel.

I see no flaw here.

QuoteI suspect there were at least as many original language inceptions as their were tribes of humans at one time, or maybe the first language began with earlier humanoids.  One thing I'm sure of is that none of us talk like our ancestors did, at least not the language part of talking.

I've seen theories that some of the most basic forms of communications (grunts & body language) are universally understood amongst almost all humans; you have oddballs like the Romanians who shake their head no for yes and yes for no, but the other 99% of humanity understands what those gestures mean or what certain grunts are trying to convey... so perhaps that is the "mother tongue" of all humanity.

I wonder how closely language and civilization were in terms of being first developed...
Every day is a good day to *remove from server* an autocrat.

drunkenshoe

#3
Quote from: SGOS on December 21, 2021, 10:23:39 AM

I have at times, wondered about which of the modern languages have changed the least from their inception, but Lithuanian never came to mind. ...


I think in ancient scale, that's what we'd call impossible,lol. But for the period called early modern Europe, from different points I love this book. It's good for understanding what is language, how does it go around, and what can we actually know about it?

https://www.cambridge.org/core/books/languages-and-communities-in-early-modern-europe/E0B6DA2C56B6658198650AEE05F602A9
"I believe you find life such a problem because you think there are good people and bad people. You're wrong, of course. There are, always and only, the bad people, but some of them are on opposite sides." Havelock Vetinari

SGOS

It's interesting how fast languages evolve.  Since the founding of America, look at how different American English is from British English.  Of course, the difference is mostly in dialect at this point, and even in America, geographic differences within the USA, whether they reflect original difference is the background of settlers or if it's divergence from one, it creates difficulty (for me, anyway) in understanding the language of some of my own countrymen.

Hawaii, is a special case, being most recently colonized, the original Hawaiian language has almost been obliterated.  I attended a presentation while in Hawaii, by a group is trying to preserve the original Hawaiian culture along with the language.  But even in teaching the old language to children, they are apparently teaching a corrupted version, which one of the presenters labeled as "Pig".  I assume "pig" as in "Pig Latin". 

While Hawaiian language has a very soothing poetic sound with its constant repetition of soft syllables (to me), a doctor I met there pointed out that it was a "useless language" in today's world.  Maybe it's because Hawaii was jolted into the modern world in very recent times, and could not assimilate a barrage of new words needed to describe a more rapidly advancing civilization with new ideas, directions, and goals.

Boy was that an observation from a totally unqualified observer (me), or what?