Hittite & Celtic dative in /k/ ?

Gordon Selway gordonselway at gn.apc.org
Wed Aug 4 20:35:43 UTC 1999

I do not have anything to hand to cover the provenance of 'aig', or the
likely date by which the conjugated prepositions arose in Insular Celtic,
but it is worth noting that Rhys and Morris found links not with Hittite
but with (?ur)Berber.

Note also that there is an semantic overlap between 'have' and 'own', and a
dialectal variation between forms based on 'aig' ('at' among other senses)
and 'le' ('with' do.).

I would instinctively doubt a link between the Gadelic and Hittite forms,
if only on the assumption that 'agam/agad/aici/aige/againn/agaibh/acu' (and
orthographic variations) are themselves insular innovations, but that does
not address the source of 'aig', of course.  Dennis King might have
something more specific to add.

Gordon Selway
<gordonselway at gn.apc.org>

At 11:12 am 26/7/99, ECOLING at aol.com wrote:

>In the light of the discussions on Hittites and other early Indo-European
>peoples of Anatolia and the Balkans, going on on IE and ANE lists, it may
>be relevant to consider whether even Celts and Hittites may have shared
>any things linguistically or culturally, as areal manifestations.


>Here it is one small item for your consideration.

>Here is a tidbit linking Celtic and Hittite which I found many years ago,
>when compiling typological comparisons of the semantic domains of "be"
>and "have".

>I wondered at the time whether it is a relic Dative case preposition /
>postposition which Hittite and Celtic shared, presumably as a retention,
>but conceivably as an areal phenomenon, or both of the above.  Does
>Tocharian have it too?  (I have no idea whether the later Indic Dative
>postposition with /k/ is related or a chance lookalike.)

>The forms being discussed, the dative case of the 1st singular pronoun,
>are statistically likely to be highly conservative, both because they are
>pronouns and also as oblique cases rather than the more often innovating
>nominative etc.


>Celtic preposition ag- where Hittite had postposition -uk above:

>ta' ... aige     "he has", with the preposition   /ag-/ (Watkins)
>ni fhuil fear agam  "not husband to-me" or rather "I have no husband"

>ag-am "to-me"


>tha airgiod agam  "is money to-me", or rather "I have money"

>Lloyd Anderson

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