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Rémy Viredaz's profile - activity

2015-12-31 09:08:18 -0500 asked a question Long-a preterites common to Baltic and Slavic

Do you know if anyone anywhere has compiled a list of Slavic (Old Church Slavic, Old Russian) a-preterites (such as пьса / p'sa 'wrote') corresponding etymologically to East Baltic ā preterites (such as Lit. vilko 'dragged') ?

2015-10-29 07:25:19 -0500 asked a question What is "simplified Vietnamese" ?

As used in some children's books. Was it introduced by the Communist regime ? What kind of "simplifications" have been made ? Surely not omitting the accents and diacritics, because that would only make the language more difficult to read.

2015-07-04 23:45:51 -0500 answered a question Does natural exposure to the target language (without a formal teaching of grammar rules) guarantee L2 leaners to acquire the lanuage?

Exposure to L2 is never as intensive as was exposure to L1. In addition, the learner tends to interpret L2 in terms of L1 grammar. For both reasons it is necessary to teach formal L2 grammar. A very important factor is the age of the learner, too.

2015-07-04 23:45:51 -0500 commented question Sanskrit bhūḥ as 3rd person

I had read both in July 1994, and duly registered them in my work notes, but I had been unable for years to find them again - apparently I kept looking under the wrong rubrics.

2015-07-04 23:45:51 -0500 answered a question What does it take to be a good linguist?

Do you mean "a good linguist" as someone who can speak and write very well several languages, or someone who makes good and valuable scientific research in the field of linguistics ?

2015-07-04 23:45:50 -0500 answered a question Am I correct in saying that the meanings of the following two phrases are indeed the same? "The sky is the limit. The limit is the sky"?

I think you have to stress the word "sky" in both cases to make the two sentences have (technically) the same meaning. Of course, I agree entirely with Dolfun's answer.

2015-07-04 23:45:50 -0500 commented question Sanskrit bhūḥ as 3rd person

That's right. Meanwhile, I've made photocopies of it. It refers to an earlier paper "The Sanskrit precative", Festschrift Weller, 1954, 35-42, which more closely responds to my description above.

2015-04-27 21:09:47 -0500 commented question Sanskrit bhūḥ as 3rd person

Thanks to another colleague, I had a second look at Wikipedia, where they have a reference to his obituary, which can be read online, and contains an exhaustive bibliography. The paper "An archaic verbal termination in early Indo-Aryan", Indo-Iranian Journal 1, 1957, 61-76, may well be the one !

2015-04-19 15:13:13 -0500 answered a question Sanskrit bhūḥ as 3rd person

A great thank you, usagi! The search may be even more difficult than I thought.

I may have read the paper more than 20 yrs ago, and the article may have been decades earlier.

I think I read the paper in a journal like Transactions of the Philological Society or possibly Bulletin of the School of Oriental (and African) Studies. However, I used to keep lists of titles of potentially interesting papers in every journal issue I consulted, but no relevant paper by Burrow (or Bailey) seems to be on my lists for these reviews.

The problem is about an apparent 2nd person bhūḥ 'thou wast' (or bhūs, according to what conventions are followed) used as a 3rd person 'he was', at least according to Burrow. Thus it has nothing to do with Hittite h or the nominative bhūḥ 'earth' Substrate in Sanskrit.

Since this is a personal proposal of Burrow's that perhaps no-one has followed since, there is little hope of finding a reference to it in a reference grammar.

At least I found no reference to that 3 sg bhūḥ in the basic grammars of Vedic by Renou of even of Sanskrit by Burrow (admittedly, both grammars' first edition is perhaps older than the paper in question).

I had searched the web for hours before posting my query.

Perhaps the only solution will be for me to look into two or three dozens of years of Bibliographie Linguistique…

Best wished to you.

2015-04-13 15:33:58 -0500 answered a question Finding the roots of a Dhivehi word

Have yo tried R. L. Turner, A Comparative Dictionary of Indo-Aryan Languages ? However, it has only words of known Indo-Aryan origin.

2015-04-13 15:24:11 -0500 answered a question Frequency effects, what are they?

One synthesis on frequency effects in language is the paper by MAŃCZAK Witold (2005) : Diachronie : Grammatik, (in :) Quantitative Linguistik. Ein internationales Handbuch, Reinhard Köhler, Gabriel Altmann, Rajmund Piotrowski (eds), Berlin : de Gruyter, 607–627. You will probably find material in the rest of the volume as well.

2015-04-13 15:19:20 -0500 answered a question Te/Ti, Me/Mi, Se/Si of Spanish and Italian

In Italian, unstressed e often yields i, e. g. Latin securus, Italian sicuro, Spanish seguro. However, when it is after the stress, i becomes e in Spanish: Latin feci, Italian feci, Spanish hice. Italian me (unstressed mi when attached after the infinitive) is from the accusative (direct objet) Latin me. Spanish mi is from the dative (indirect object) Latin mihi. On the whole, however, you have mostly Latin i = Italian i = Spanish i and Latin e = Italian e = Spanish e (or ie), or in many popular words: Latin short i = Italian e = Spanish e.

2015-04-13 15:07:32 -0500 answered a question When Was Dissimilation First Documented?

Webster's gives "ca. 1874" as first occurrence of the word dissimilation, and 1841 for dissimilate (but I don't know if the latter was used in the linguistic sense). For French, the Petit Robert gives: end of XIXth century. Dissimilation in today's sense is linked to the notion of sound law (a given dissimilation is either a sound law or an exception to sound laws), and the notion of sound laws is born around 1875.

2015-04-13 14:41:53 -0500 answered a question Linguistic mutilation through software translations !

Even from English to French is quality of machine translation horrendous. Part of the text seems ok, but part is mistranslated or sheer nonsense. And translation is usually two-step (Source to English, then English to Target), which compounds inadequacies. There have been improvement in speed and in the number of languages available, but to my mind hardly any improvement in quality in 60 years.

2015-04-13 14:18:24 -0500 asked a question Sanskrit bhūḥ as 3rd person

Dear Linguists, Long time ago, I've read a paper by Thomas Burrow (?), about a Vedic hymn (apparently not Rgvedic) where the form bhūḥ, he argued from the context, was not a 2nd person but a 3rd person singular. He compared Hittite 3rd sg. preterite forms in -š. Does anyone know the reference to this paper? Many thanks.