Arabic is a Central Semitic language that first emerged in Iron Age northwestern Arabia and is now the lingua franca of the Arab world. It is named after the Arabs, a term used to describe peoples living in the area bounded by Mesopotamia in the east and the Anti-Lebanon mountains in the west, in northwestern Arabia, in the Sinai Peninsula. Arabic is classified as a macrolanguage comprising 30 modern varieties, including its standard form, Modern Standard Arabic, derived from Classical Arabic; as the modern written language, Modern Standard Arabic is taught in schools and universities, is used to varying degrees in workplaces and the media. The two formal varieties are grouped together as Literary Arabic, the official language of 26 states, the liturgical language of the religion of Islam, since the Quran and Hadith were written in Arabic. Modern Standard Arabic follows the grammatical standards of Classical Arabic, uses much of the same vocabulary. However, it has discarded some grammatical constructions and vocabulary that no longer have any counterpart in the spoken varieties, has adopted certain new constructions and vocabulary from the spoken varieties.
Much of the new vocabulary is used to denote concepts that have arisen in the post-classical era in modern times. Due to its grounding in Classical Arabic, Modern Standard Arabic is removed over a millennium from everyday speech, construed as a multitude of dialects of this language; these dialects and Modern Standard Arabic are described by some scholars as not mutually comprehensible. The former are acquired in families, while the latter is taught in formal education settings. However, there have been studies reporting some degree of comprehension of stories told in the standard variety among preschool-aged children; the relation between Modern Standard Arabic and these dialects is sometimes compared to that of Latin and vernaculars in medieval and early modern Europe. This view though does not take into account the widespread use of Modern Standard Arabic as a medium of audiovisual communication in today's mass media—a function Latin has never performed. During the Middle Ages, Literary Arabic was a major vehicle of culture in Europe in science and philosophy.
As a result, many European languages have borrowed many words from it. Arabic influence in vocabulary, is seen in European languages Spanish and to a lesser extent Portuguese, Catalan, owing to both the proximity of Christian European and Muslim Arab civilizations and 800 years of Arabic culture and language in the Iberian Peninsula, referred to in Arabic as al-Andalus. Sicilian has about 500 Arabic words as result of Sicily being progressively conquered by Arabs from North Africa, from the mid-9th to mid-10th centuries. Many of these words relate to related activities; the Balkan languages, including Greek and Bulgarian, have acquired a significant number of Arabic words through contact with Ottoman Turkish. Arabic has influenced many languages around the globe throughout its history; some of the most influenced languages are Persian, Spanish, Kashmiri, Bosnian, Bengali, Malay, Indonesian, Punjabi, Assamese, Sindhi and Hausa, some languages in parts of Africa. Conversely, Arabic has borrowed words from other languages, including Greek and Persian in medieval times, contemporary European languages such as English and French in modern times.
Classical Arabic is the liturgical language of 1.8 billion Muslims, Modern Standard Arabic is one of six official languages of the United Nations. All varieties of Arabic combined are spoken by as many as 422 million speakers in the Arab world, making it the fifth most spoken language in the world. Arabic is written with the Arabic alphabet, an abjad script and is written from right to left, although the spoken varieties are sometimes written in ASCII Latin from left to right with no standardized orthography. Arabic is a Central Semitic language related to the Northwest Semitic languages, the Ancient South Arabian languages, various other Semitic languages of Arabia such as Dadanitic; the Semitic languages changed a great deal between Proto-Semitic and the establishment of the Central Semitic languages in grammar. Innovations of the Central Semitic languages—all maintained in Arabic—include: The conversion of the suffix-conjugated stative formation into a past tense; the conversion of the prefix-conjugated preterite-tense formation into a present tense.
The elimination of other prefix-conjugated mood/aspect forms in favor of new moods formed by endings attached to the prefix-conjugation forms. The development of an internal passive. There are several features which Classical Arabic, the modern Arabic varieties, as well as the Safaitic and Hismaic inscriptions share which are unattested in any other Central Semitic language variety, including the Dadanitic and Taymanitic languages of the northern Hejaz; these features are evidence of common descent from Proto-Arabic. The following features can be reconstructed with confidence for Proto-Arabic: negative particles m *mā.
Sanskrit is a language of ancient India with a history going back about 3,500 years. It is the primary liturgical language of Hinduism and the predominant language of most works of Hindu philosophy as well as some of the principal texts of Buddhism and Jainism. Sanskrit, in its variants and numerous dialects, was the lingua franca of ancient and medieval India. In the early 1st millennium CE, along with Buddhism and Hinduism, Sanskrit migrated to Southeast Asia, parts of East Asia and Central Asia, emerging as a language of high culture and of local ruling elites in these regions. Sanskrit is an Old Indo-Aryan language; as one of the oldest documented members of the Indo-European family of languages, Sanskrit holds a prominent position in Indo-European studies. It is related to Greek and Latin, as well as Hittite, Old Avestan and many other extinct languages with historical significance to Europe, West Asia, Central Asia, South Asia, it traces its linguistic ancestry to the Proto-Indo-Aryan language, Proto-Indo-Iranian and the Proto-Indo-European languages.
Sanskrit is traceable to the 2nd millennium BCE in a form known as the Vedic Sanskrit, with the Rigveda as the earliest known composition. A more refined and standardized grammatical form called the Classical Sanskrit emerged in mid-1st millennium BCE with the Aṣṭādhyāyī treatise of Pāṇini. Sanskrit, though not Classical Sanskrit, is the root language of many Prakrit languages. Examples include numerous modern daughter Northern Indian subcontinental languages such as Hindi, Bengali and Nepali; the body of Sanskrit literature encompasses a rich tradition of philosophical and religious texts, as well as poetry, drama, scientific and other texts. In the ancient era, Sanskrit compositions were orally transmitted by methods of memorisation of exceptional complexity and fidelity; the earliest known inscriptions in Sanskrit are from the 1st-century BCE, such as the few discovered in Ayodhya and Ghosundi-Hathibada. Sanskrit texts dated to the 1st millennium CE were written in the Brahmi script, the Nāgarī script, the historic South Indian scripts and their derivative scripts.
Sanskrit is one of the 22 languages listed in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution of India. It continues to be used as a ceremonial and ritual language in Hinduism and some Buddhist practices such as hymns and chants; the Sanskrit verbal adjective sáṃskṛta- is a compound word consisting of sam and krta-. It connotes a work, "well prepared and perfect, sacred". According to Biderman, the perfection contextually being referred to in the etymological origins of the word is its tonal qualities, rather than semantic. Sound and oral transmission were valued quality in ancient India, its sages refined the alphabet, the structure of words and its exacting grammar into a "collection of sounds, a kind of sublime musical mold", states Biderman, as an integral language they called Sanskrit. From late Vedic period onwards, state Annette Wilke and Oliver Moebus, resonating sound and its musical foundations attracted an "exceptionally large amount of linguistic and religious literature" in India; the sound was visualized as "pervading all creation", another representation of the world itself, the "mysterious magnum" of the Hindu thought.
The search for perfection in thought and of salvation was one of the dimensions of sacred sound, the common thread to weave all ideas and inspirations became the quest for what the ancient Indians believed to be a perfect language, the "phonocentric episteme" of Sanskrit. Sanskrit as a language competed with numerous less exact vernacular Indian languages called Prakritic languages; the term prakrta means "original, normal, artless", states Franklin Southworth. The relationship between Prakrit and Sanskrit is found in the Indian texts dated to the 1st millennium CE. Patanjali acknowledged that Prakrit is the first language, one instinctively adopted by every child with all its imperfections and leads to the problems of interpretation and misunderstanding; the purifying structure of the Sanskrit language removes these imperfections. The early Sanskrit grammarian Dandin states, for example, that much in the Prakrit languages is etymologically rooted in Sanskrit but involve "loss of sounds" and corruptions that result from a "disregard of the grammar".
Dandin acknowledged that there are words and confusing structures in Prakrit that thrive independent of Sanskrit. This view is found in the writing of the author of the ancient Natyasastra text; the early Jain scholar Namisadhu acknowledged the difference, but disagreed that the Prakrit language was a corruption of Sanskrit. Namisadhu stated that the Prakrit language was the purvam and they came to women and children, that Sanskrit was a refinement of the Prakrit through a "purification by grammar". Sanskrit belongs to the Indo-European family of languages, it is one of the three ancient documented languages that arose from a common root language now referred to as the Proto-Indo-European language: Vedic Sanskrit. Mycenaean Greek and Ancient Greek. Mycenaean Greek is the older recorded form of Greek, but the limited material that has survived has a ambiguous writing system. More important to Indo-European studies is Ancient Greek, documented extensively beginning with the two Homeric poems. Hittite.
This is the earliest-recorded of all Indo-European languages, distinguishable into Old Hittite, Middle Hittite and Neo-Hittite. I
In linguistics, morphology is the study of words, how they are formed, their relationship to other words in the same language. It analyzes the structure of words and parts of words, such as stems, root words and suffixes. Morphology looks at parts of speech and stress, the ways context can change a word's pronunciation and meaning. Morphology differs from morphological typology, the classification of languages based on their use of words, lexicology, the study of words and how they make up a language's vocabulary. While words, along with clitics, are accepted as being the smallest units of syntax, in most languages, if not all, many words can be related to other words by rules that collectively describe the grammar for that language. For example, English speakers recognize that the words dog and dogs are related, differentiated only by the plurality morpheme "-s", only found bound to noun phrases. Speakers of English, a fusional language, recognize these relations from their innate knowledge of English's rules of word formation.
They infer intuitively. By contrast, Classical Chinese has little morphology, using exclusively unbound morphemes and depending on word order to convey meaning; these are understood as grammars. The rules understood by a speaker reflect specific patterns or regularities in the way words are formed from smaller units in the language they are using, how those smaller units interact in speech. In this way, morphology is the branch of linguistics that studies patterns of word formation within and across languages and attempts to formulate rules that model the knowledge of the speakers of those languages. Phonological and orthographic modifications between a base word and its origin may be partial to literacy skills. Studies have indicated that the presence of modification in phonology and orthography makes morphologically complex words harder to understand and that the absence of modification between a base word and its origin makes morphologically complex words easier to understand. Morphologically complex words are easier to comprehend.
Polysynthetic languages, such as Chukchi, have words composed of many morphemes. The Chukchi word "təmeyŋəlevtpəγtərkən", for example, meaning "I have a fierce headache", is composed of eight morphemes t-ə-meyŋ-ə-levt-pəγt-ə-rkən that may be glossed; the morphology of such languages allows for each consonant and vowel to be understood as morphemes, while the grammar of the language indicates the usage and understanding of each morpheme. The discipline that deals with the sound changes occurring within morphemes is morphophonology; the history of morphological analysis dates back to the ancient Indian linguist Pāṇini, who formulated the 3,959 rules of Sanskrit morphology in the text Aṣṭādhyāyī by using a constituency grammar. The Greco-Roman grammatical tradition engaged in morphological analysis. Studies in Arabic morphology, conducted by Marāḥ al-arwāḥ and Aḥmad b. ‘alī Mas‘ūd, date back to at least 1200 CE. The linguistic term "morphology" was coined by August Schleicher in 1859; the term "word" has no well-defined meaning.
Instead, two related terms are used in morphology: word-form. A lexeme is a set of inflected word-forms, represented with the citation form in small capitals. For instance, the lexeme eat contains the word-forms eat, eats and ate. Eat and eats are thus considered. Eat and Eater, on the other hand, are different lexemes. Thus, there are three rather different notions of ‘word’. Here are examples from other languages of the failure of a single phonological word to coincide with a single morphological word form. In Latin, one way to express the concept of'NOUN-PHRASE1 and NOUN-PHRASE2' is to suffix'-que' to the second noun phrase: "apples oranges-and", as it were. An extreme level of this theoretical quandary posed by some phonological words is provided by the Kwak'wala language. In Kwak'wala, as in a great many other languages, meaning relations between nouns, including possession and "semantic case", are formulated by affixes instead of by independent "words"; the three-word English phrase, "with his club", where'with' identifies its dependent noun phrase as an instrument and'his' denotes a possession relation, would consist of two words or just one word in many languages.
Unlike most languages, Kwak'wala semantic affixes phonologically attach not to the lexeme they pertain to semantically, but to the preceding lexeme. Consider the following example:kwixʔid-i-da bəgwanəmai-χ-a q'asa-s-isi t'alwagwayu Morpheme by morpheme translation: kwixʔid-i-da = clubbed-PIVOT-DETERMINERbəgwanəma-χ-a = man-ACCUSATIVE-DETERMINERq'asa-s-is = otter-INSTRUMENTAL-3SG-POSSESSIVEt'alwagwayu = club"the man clubbed the otter with his club."That is, to the speaker of Kwak'wala, the sentence does not contain the "words"'him-the-otter' or'with-his-club' Instead, the markers -i-da, referring to "man", attaches not to the noun bəgwanəma but to the verb.
V2 word order
In syntax, verb-second word order places the finite verb of a clause or sentence in second position with a single constituent preceding it, which functions as the clause topic. V2 word order is common in the Germanic languages and is found in Northeast Caucasian Ingush, Uto-Aztecan O'odham, fragmentarily in Rhaeto-Romansh Sursilvan. Of the Germanic family, English is exceptional in having predominantly SVO order instead of V2, although there are vestiges of the V2 phenomenon. Most Germanic languages do not use V2 order in embedded clauses, with a few exceptions. In particular, German and Afrikaans revert to VF word order after a complementizer. Kashmiri VF order in relative clauses; the following examples from German illustrate the V2 principle: Sentences a–d have the finite verb spielten in second position, with varying constituents in first position. Sentences e and f sentences are unacceptable because the finite verb no longer appears in second position. V2 word order allows any constituent to occupy the first position as long as the second position is occupied by the finite verb.
The V2 principle regulates the position of finite verbs only. Non-finite verbs in V2 languages appear in varying positions depending on the language. In German and Dutch, for instance, non-finite verbs appear after the object in clause final position in main clauses. Swedish and Icelandic, in contrast, position non-finite verbs after the finite verb but before the object; that is, V2 operates on only the finite verb. Germanic languages vary in the application of V2 order in embedded clauses, they fall into three groups. In these languages, the word order of clauses is fixed in two patterns of conventionally numbered positions. Both end with positions for non-finite verb forms, and, adverbials. In main clauses, the V2 constraint holds; the finite verb must be in sentence adverbs in position. The latter include words with meanings such as'not' and'always'; the subject may be position, but when a topical expression occupies the position, the subject is in position. In embedded clauses, the V2 constraint is absent.
After the conjunction, the subject must follow. Thus, the first four positions are in the fixed order conjunction, sentence adverb, finite verb The position of the sentence adverbs is important to those theorists who see them as marking the start of a large constituent within the clause, thus the finite verb is seen as inside that constituent in embedded clauses, but outside that constituent in V2 main clauses. Swedish Danish So-called Perkerdansk is an example of a variety. Norwegian Faroese Unlike continental Scandinavian languages, the sentence adverb may either precede or follow the finite verb in embedded clauses. A slot is inserted here for the following sentence adverb alternative. In these languages there is a strong tendency to place some or all of the verb forms in final position. In main clauses, the V2 constraint holds; as with other Germanic languages, the finite verb must be in the second position. However, any non-finite forms must be in final position; the subject may be in the first position, but when a topical expression occupies the position, the subject follows the finite verb.
In embedded clauses, the V2 constraint does not hold. The finite verb form must be adjacent to any non-finite at the end of the clause, with different word-order in different languages. German grammarians traditionally divide sentences into fields. Subordinate clauses preceding the main clause are said to be in the first field, clauses following the main clause in the final field; the central field contains most or all of a clause, is bounded by left bracket and right bracket positions. In main clauses, the initial element is said to be located in the first field, the V2 finite verb form in the left bracket, any non-finite verb forms in the right bracket. In embedded clauses, the conjunction is said to be located in the left bracket, the verb forms in the right bracket. In German embedded clauses, a finite verb form follows any non-finite forms. German Dutch This analysis suggests a close parallel between the V2 finite form in main clauses and the conjunctions in embedded clauses; each is seen as an introduction to its clause-type, a function which some modern scholars have equated with the notion of specifier.
The analysis is supported in spoken Dutch by the placement of clitic pronoun subjects. Forms such as ie cannot stand alone, unlike the full-form equivalent hij; the words to which they may be attached are those same introduction words: the V2 form in a main clause, or the conjunction in an embedded clause. Equivalent rules exist in vernacular German, for example regarding the reduced pronunciation of du. Hence, this pronoun may be pronounced or following verbs and conjunctions, but not otherwise. Dutch differs from German in its word order in subordinate clauses. In Dutch subordinate clauses two word orders are possible for the verb clusters and are referred to as the "
Biblical Hebrew called classical Hebrew, is an archaic form of Hebrew, a Canaanite Semitic language spoken by the Israelites in the area known as Israel west of the Jordan River and east of the Mediterranean Sea. The term "Hebrew" was not used for the language in the Bible, referred to as שפת כנען or יהודית, but the name was used in Greek and Mishnaic Hebrew texts, it is less mutually intelligible with modern Hebrew. Hebrew is attested epigraphically from about the 10th century BCE, spoken Hebrew persisted through and beyond the Second Temple period, which ended in the siege of Jerusalem, it developed into Mishnaic Hebrew, spoken up until the fifth century CE. Biblical Hebrew as recorded in the Hebrew Bible reflects various stages of the Hebrew language in its consonantal skeleton, as well as a vocalic system, added in the Middle Ages by the Masoretes. There is some evidence of regional dialectal variation, including differences between Biblical Hebrew as spoken in the northern Kingdom of Israel and in the southern Kingdom of Judah.
The consonantal text was transmitted in manuscript form, underwent redaction in the Second Temple period, but its earliest portions can be dated to the late 8th to early 7th centuries BCE. Biblical Hebrew has been written with a number of different writing systems; the Hebrews adopted the Phoenician alphabet around the 12th century BCE, which developed into the Paleo-Hebrew alphabet. This was retained by the Samaritans. However, the Aramaic alphabet displaced the Paleo-Hebrew alphabet for the Jews, it became the source for the modern Hebrew alphabet. All of these scripts were lacking letters to represent all of the sounds of Biblical Hebrew, though these sounds are reflected in Greek and Latin transcriptions/translations of the time; these scripts only indicated consonants, but certain letters, known by the Latin term matres lectionis, became used to mark vowels. In the Middle Ages, various systems of diacritics were developed to mark the vowels in Hebrew manuscripts. Biblical Hebrew possessed a series of "emphatic" consonants whose precise articulation is disputed ejective or pharyngealized.
Earlier Biblical Hebrew possessed three consonants which did not have their own letters in the writing system, but over time they merged with other consonants. The stop consonants developed fricative allophones under the influence of Aramaic, these sounds became marginally phonemic; the pharyngeal and glottal consonants underwent weakening in some regional dialects, as reflected in the modern Samaritan Hebrew reading tradition. The vowel system of Biblical Hebrew changed over time and is reflected differently in the ancient Greek and Latin transcriptions, medieval vocalization systems, modern reading traditions. Biblical Hebrew had a typical Semitic morphology with nonconcatenative morphology, arranging Semitic roots into patterns to form words. Biblical Hebrew distinguished three numbers. Verbs were marked for voice and mood, had two conjugations which may have indicated aspect and/or tense; the tense or aspect of verbs was influenced by the conjugation ו, in the so-called waw-consecutive construction.
Default word order was verb–subject–object, verbs inflected for the number and person of their subject. Pronominal suffixes could be appended to verbs or nouns, nouns had special construct states for use in possessive constructions; the earliest written sources refer to Biblical Hebrew by the name of the land in which it was spoken: שפת כנען'the language of Canaan'. The Hebrew Bible shows that the language was called יהודית'Judaean, Judahite'. In the Hellenistic period Greek writings use the names Hebraios, Hebraïsti, in Mishnaic Hebrew we find עברית'Hebrew' and לשון עברית'Hebrew language'; the origin of this term is obscure. Jews began referring to Hebrew as לשון הקדש "the Holy Tongue" in Mishnaic Hebrew; the term Classical Hebrew may include all pre-medieval dialects of Hebrew, including Mishnaic Hebrew, or it may be limited to Hebrew contemporaneous with the Hebrew Bible. The term Biblical Hebrew refers to pre-Mishnaic dialects; the term'Biblical Hebrew' may or may not include extra-biblical texts, such as inscriptions, also includes vocalization traditions for the Hebrew Bible's consonantal text, most the early medieval Tiberian vocalization.
The archeological record for the prehistory of Biblical Hebrew is far more complete than the record of Biblical Hebrew itself. Early Northwest Semitic materials are attested from the end of the Bronze Age; the Northwest Semitic languages, including Hebrew, differentiated noticeably during the Iron Age, although in its earliest stages Biblical Hebrew was not differentiated from Ugaritic and the Canaanite of the Amarna letters. Hebrew developed during the latter half of the second millennium BCE between the Jordan and the
The Ancient Greek language includes the forms of Greek used in Ancient Greece and the ancient world from around the 9th century BCE to the 6th century CE. It is roughly divided into the Archaic period, Classical period, Hellenistic period, it is succeeded by medieval Greek. Koine is regarded as a separate historical stage of its own, although in its earliest form it resembled Attic Greek and in its latest form it approaches Medieval Greek. Prior to the Koine period, Greek of the classic and earlier periods included several regional dialects. Ancient Greek was the language of Homer and of fifth-century Athenian historians and philosophers, it has contributed many words to English vocabulary and has been a standard subject of study in educational institutions of the Western world since the Renaissance. This article contains information about the Epic and Classical periods of the language. Ancient Greek was a pluricentric language, divided into many dialects; the main dialect groups are Attic and Ionic, Aeolic and Doric, many of them with several subdivisions.
Some dialects are found in standardized literary forms used in literature, while others are attested only in inscriptions. There are several historical forms. Homeric Greek is a literary form of Archaic Greek used in the epic poems, the "Iliad" and "Odyssey", in poems by other authors. Homeric Greek had significant differences in grammar and pronunciation from Classical Attic and other Classical-era dialects; the origins, early form and development of the Hellenic language family are not well understood because of a lack of contemporaneous evidence. Several theories exist about what Hellenic dialect groups may have existed between the divergence of early Greek-like speech from the common Proto-Indo-European language and the Classical period, they differ in some of the detail. The only attested dialect from this period is Mycenaean Greek, but its relationship to the historical dialects and the historical circumstances of the times imply that the overall groups existed in some form. Scholars assume that major Ancient Greek period dialect groups developed not than 1120 BCE, at the time of the Dorian invasion—and that their first appearances as precise alphabetic writing began in the 8th century BCE.
The invasion would not be "Dorian" unless the invaders had some cultural relationship to the historical Dorians. The invasion is known to have displaced population to the Attic-Ionic regions, who regarded themselves as descendants of the population displaced by or contending with the Dorians; the Greeks of this period believed there were three major divisions of all Greek people—Dorians and Ionians, each with their own defining and distinctive dialects. Allowing for their oversight of Arcadian, an obscure mountain dialect, Cypriot, far from the center of Greek scholarship, this division of people and language is quite similar to the results of modern archaeological-linguistic investigation. One standard formulation for the dialects is: West vs. non-west Greek is the strongest marked and earliest division, with non-west in subsets of Ionic-Attic and Aeolic vs. Arcadocypriot, or Aeolic and Arcado-Cypriot vs. Ionic-Attic. Non-west is called East Greek. Arcadocypriot descended more from the Mycenaean Greek of the Bronze Age.
Boeotian had come under a strong Northwest Greek influence, can in some respects be considered a transitional dialect. Thessalian had come under Northwest Greek influence, though to a lesser degree. Pamphylian Greek, spoken in a small area on the southwestern coast of Anatolia and little preserved in inscriptions, may be either a fifth major dialect group, or it is Mycenaean Greek overlaid by Doric, with a non-Greek native influence. Most of the dialect sub-groups listed above had further subdivisions equivalent to a city-state and its surrounding territory, or to an island. Doric notably had several intermediate divisions as well, into Island Doric, Southern Peloponnesus Doric, Northern Peloponnesus Doric; the Lesbian dialect was Aeolic Greek. All the groups were represented by colonies beyond Greece proper as well, these colonies developed local characteristics under the influence of settlers or neighbors speaking different Greek dialects; the dialects outside the Ionic group are known from inscriptions, notable exceptions being: fragments of the works of the poet Sappho from the island of Lesbos, in Aeolian, the poems of the Boeotian poet Pindar and other lyric poets in Doric.
After the conquests of Alexander the Great in the late 4th century BCE, a new international dialect known as Koine or Common Greek developed based on Attic Greek, but with influence from other dialects. This dialect replaced most of the older dialects, although Doric dialect has survived in the Tsakonian language, spoken in the region of modern Sparta. Doric has passed down its aorist terminations into most verbs of Demotic Greek. By about the 6th century CE, the Koine had metamorphosized into Medieval Greek. Ancient Macedonian was an Indo-European language at least related to Greek, but its exact relationship is unclear because of insufficient data: a dialect of Greek; the Macedonian dialect (or l
Morphological typology is a way of classifying the languages of the world that groups languages according to their common morphological structures. The field organizes languages on the basis of. Analytic languages contain little inflection, instead relying on features like word order and auxiliary words to convey meaning. Synthetic languages, ones that are not analytic, are divided into two categories: agglutinative and fusional languages. Agglutinative languages rely on discrete particles for inflection, while fusional languages "fuse" inflectional categories together allowing one word ending to contain several categories, such that the original root can be difficult to extract. A further subcategory of agglutinative languages are polysynthetic languages, which take agglutination to a higher level by constructing entire sentences, including nouns, as one word. Analytic and agglutinative languages can all be found in many regions of the world. However, each category is dominant in some families and regions and nonexistent in others.
Analytic languages encompass the Sino-Tibetan family, including Chinese, many languages in Southeast Asia, the Pacific, West Africa, a few of the Germanic languages. Fusional languages encompass most of the Indo-European family—for example, French and Hindi—as well as the Semitic family and a few members of the Uralic family. Most of the world's languages, are agglutinative, including the Turkic and Bantu languages and most families in the Americas, the Caucasus, non-Slavic Russia. Constructed languages take a variety of morphological alignments; the concept of discrete morphological categories has not been without criticism. Some linguists argue that most, if not all, languages are in a permanent state of transition from fusional to analytic to agglutinative to fusional again. Others take issue with the definitions of the categories, arguing that they conflate several distinct, if related, variables; the field was first developed by August von Schlegel. Analytic languages show a low ratio of morphemes to words.
Sentences in analytic languages are composed of independent root morphemes. Grammatical relations between words are expressed by separate words where they might otherwise be expressed by affixes, which are present to a minimal degree in such languages. There is little to no morphological change in words: they tend to be uninflected. Grammatical categories are indicated by bringing in additional words. Individual words carry a general meaning. In analytic languages context and syntax are more important than morphology. Analytic languages include some of the major East Asian languages, such as Chinese, Vietnamese. Note that the ideographic writing systems of these languages play a strong role in regimenting linguistic continuity according to an analytic, or isolating, morphology. Additionally, English is moderately analytic, it and Afrikaans can be considered as some of the most analytic of all Indo-European languages. However, they are traditionally analyzed as fusional languages. A related concept is the isolating language, one in which there is only one, or on average close to one, morpheme per word.
Not all analytic languages are isolating. Synthetic languages form words by affixing a given number of dependent morphemes to a root morpheme; the morphemes may be distinguishable from the root. They may be fused among themselves. Word order is less important for these languages than it is for analytic languages, since individual words express the grammatical relations that would otherwise be indicated by syntax. In addition, there tends to be a high degree of concordance. Therefore, morphology in synthetic languages is more important than syntax. Most Indo-European languages are moderately synthetic. There are two subtypes of synthesis, according to whether morphemes are differentiable or not; these subtypes are fusional. Morphemes in fusional languages are not distinguishable from the root or among themselves. Several grammatical bits of meaning may be fused into one affix. Morphemes may be expressed by internal phonological changes in the root, such as consonant gradation and vowel gradation, or by suprasegmental features such as stress or tone, which are of course inseparable from the root.
The Indo-European and Semitic languages are the most cited examples of fusional languages. However, others have been described. For example, Navajo is sometimes categorized as a fusional language because its complex system of verbal affixes has become condensed and irregular enough that discerning individual morphemes is possible; some Uralic languages are described as fusional the Sami languages and Estonian. On the other hand, not all Indo-European languages are fusional. Agglutinative languages have words containing several morphemes that are always differe