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Akkadian  

Stephanie Dalley

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
(1) Term used until 1869 for the language now known as *Sumerian. (2) Term used since 1869 for the East Semitic language that is also known by its northern and southern dialects as Assyrian and ... More

alphabet, Greek  

John William Pirie, Lilian Hamilton Jeffery, and Alan Johnston

Online publication date:
Jul 2015
In early Greece various forms of alphabet were current but all derived from a *Phoenician (Semitic) source, which must have ... More

alphabets of Italy  

John Penney

Online publication date:
Jul 2015
Subject:
Linguistics
There is no evidence for any form of writing in Italy before the arrival of Greek colonists in the 8th cent. bce. The Euboean alphabet brought by settlers at *Pithecusae (mod. Ischia) and *Cumae was ... More

analogy and anomaly  

R. H. Robins

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Linguistics
Analogy and anomaly were the titles of two themes in the investigation of the Greek and Latin languages in the classical era. They turned on the question, to what extent can regularity (analogia, ... More

Anatolian languages  

Anna Morpurgo Davies

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Linguistics
In the course of the 20th cent. new evidence emerged for a family of closely related languages attested in Anatolia (Turkey) from the 16th cent. bce and indirectly known two or three centuries ... More

Aramaic  

J. F. Healey

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Aramaic, a *Semitic language, was used in the ancient near east from early in the 1st millennium bce and through the Roman period. Originating in upper Mesopotamia, it is first known ... More

archaism in Latin  

Leofranc Holford-Strevens

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Linguistics
Archaism is the employment of obsolete or obsolescent diction intended as such (not the conservative retention of the language with which one grew up, nor the colloquial preservation of expressions ... More

bilingualism  

Rosalind Thomas

Online publication date:
Jul 2015
Subject:
Linguistics
Widespread bilingualism at some level was characteristic of the ancient world, whether we look for(a) bilingual communities, in which two languages are in use (e.g. official and popular languages, ... More

British Latin  

Benjamin Fortson

Online publication date:
Jul 2017
Subject:
Linguistics
The Latin spoken in the British Isles during and shortly after the Roman occupation (43–410ce). It left numerous traces in loanwords into British Celtic (spoken by the indigenous Celtic ... More

Carian language  

Anna Morpurgo Davies

Online publication date:
Mar 2016
Subject:
Linguistics
Direct evidence for the Carian language (see caria) is limited to approximately 30 inscriptions from Caria proper and well above 200 inscriptions (some still unedited) written by Carian speakers in ... More

Celtic languages  

John Penney

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Linguistics
The Celtic branch of Indo-European is traditionally divided into Insular Celtic and Continental Celtic. The records of the Continental Celtic languages consist of names, occurring in profusion in ... More

Coptic language  

T. G. Wilfong

Online publication date:
Jan 2018
Subject:
Linguistics
Coptic is the latest phase of the ancient Egyptian language, written in an alphabet partly derived from Greek and incorporating Greek vocabulary. Strongly associated with Christianity in ... More

cuneiform  

Benjamin Fortson

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Cuneiform denotes any of at least three writing systems of ancient Mesopotamia and the surrounding areas. It is characterized in its classical form by signs consisting of one or more ... More

dialects, Greek, prehistory  

Anna Morpurgo Davies

Online publication date:
Jul 2015
Subject:
Linguistics
In the first half of the first millennium bce each Greek region and indeed each Greek city spoke and sometimes wrote its own dialect (see Greek language). The Greeks themselves mentioned four ethnic ... More

Elymian language  

Benjamin Fortson

Online publication date:
Dec 2017
Subject:
Linguistics
The language of the Elymi in western Sicily, preserved in about 130 mostly fragmentary inscriptions in the Greek alphabet, primarily from Segesta, and dating probably from the 6th and 5th ... More

epigraphy, Etruscan  

Jean Turfa

Online publication date:
Feb 2017
The study of the inscriptions written in the Etruscan language and alphabet, usually texts incised on stone, pottery, or metal objects, or occasionally on more fragile media such as ink-on-cloth. ... More

Eteocypriot  

Philippa M. Steele

Online publication date:
Jan 2018
Eteocypriot (or Eteocyprian) is a modern term referring to a group of inscriptions written in an unknown language of Iron Age Cyprus (attested 8th–4th centuriesbce). The name was coined by analogy ... More

Etruscan language  

Helmut Rix

Online publication date:
Mar 2016
Subject:
Linguistics
The Etruscan language was long held to be obscure and mysterious. This it no longer remains, even if there are still large gaps in our knowledge of its grammar and lexicon and in our understanding of ... More

etymology  

Robert Maltby

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Linguistics
Etymology in the ancient world was always closely connected with questions concerning the ultimate origin of language. Was the sound of a word merely a matter of convention (the theory of nomos), or ... More

Faliscan language  

Benjamin Fortson

Online publication date:
Nov 2017
Subject:
Linguistics
Faliscan was the language spoken in the ager Faliscus north of Rome. It is preserved in some 450 mostly very short inscriptions dating from the 6th into the 2nd centurybce primarily from Civita ... More

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