literary tradition - language that is written as well as spoken. Example: English is a literary tradition. 2.
official language - in multilingual countries that language selected, often by the educated and politically powerful elite, to promote internal cohesion; usually the language of the courts and government. Example: The official language of India is Hindi. 3.
Proto-Indoeuropean - hypothesized ancestral Indo-European language that is the hearth of the ancient Latin, Greek, and Sanskrit languages. Example: Russian is derived from the Proto-Indoeuropean language family. 4.
Dialect - local or regional characteristics of a language. While accent refers to the pronunciation differences of a standard language, a dialect, in addition to pronunciation variation, has distinctive grammar and vocabulary. Example: The word “y’all” is used in the south, almost specifically to that group of people. 5.
Nostratic - hypothesized ancestral language of Proto-Indo-European, as well as other ancestral language families.
Example: The language from which the Proto-Indo-European languages derived. 6.
standard language - variant of a language that a country’s intellectual or politically elite seek to promote as the norm (e.g., King’s English). Example: Standard language would say “I have never been there before” while non-standard language would say “I ain’t never been there before”. 7.
sound shift - slight change in a word across related languages from the present backward toward its origin. Example: The word “besser” in Deutsch became “better” in English due to a sound shift. 8.
Isogloss - geographical boundary within which a particular linguistic feature occurs. Example: The North-Midland Isogloss that has the Northern Cities Vowel Shift in regions north of the line (including Western New York, Cleveland, Ohio, lower Michigan, northern Illinois and eastern Wisconsin). 9.
backward reconstruction - the tracking of sound shifts and hardening of consonants...
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