JoatSimeon at JoatSimeon at
Sat Feb 6 05:35:15 UTC 1999

>mcv at (Miguel Carrasquer Vidal)

>Likewise comparing the linguistic, archaeological and genetic
>maps of Europe shows a large amount of overlap between
>Indo-European, the initial agricultural expansion from Anatolia
>to Holland, and the main genetic component.

-- post hoc propter ergo hoc.  The initial agricultural colonization of Europe
probably carried _some_ language, but there's no evidence whatsoever it was IE
and plenty that it wasn't.  The time-frame is wrong, for instance.

>But the "steppe" or "Kurgan" model cannot adequately explain all the
>archaeological facts (cultural change, but no evidence for invasions in
>Northern and Western Europe)

-- well, that's Renfrew's main weakness.  It's historically demonstrable that
migrations resulting in complete language replacement _don't_ have to leave
any particular archaeological trace.  Some archaeologists hate to acknowledge

Eg., as Mallory points out, there's virtually no trace of the Scotic migration
that carried Gaelic to Scotland -- and I strongly suspect that if it weren't
attested in the written sources, it would be denied.  The migrations out of
Zululand in the 19th century took Ngoni languages 2000 miles from their
original source in Natal in less that 30 years.  I would defy anyone to find a
single archaeological clue, although there would be plenty of _linguistic_

The Corded Ware horizon (and the Beaker derivation therefrom) represents a
quite drastic break in the archaeological record from the Rhine to the Oka-
Volga area at about the right time and with many elements demonstrably related
to the steppe cultures of the time.

>or all the linguistic facts (why the gap between Anatolian and the rest of IE

-- "they moved first" seems adequate.

>why Germanic

-- why not?

>Furthermore, history shows that steppe invadors have never penetrated
>linguistically beyond Hungary and the Balkans.

-- the situation in the late Neolithic had few historical parallels --
population densities were much lower, there were no states, etc.  The Indo-
Iranians, uncontestably coming from the Steppe into areas of old Neolithic and
Early Bronze Age habitation in Iran, Afghanistan and India, replaced the local
languages over an area just as large and probably more populous than Europe.

>Indo-Aryan did not succeed in wiping out all traces of the languages of the
>earlier Neolithic population, far from it.

-- Well, I'd call it fairly complete.  Starting at a much later date than the
Indo-Europeanization of Europe, the whole area Iran-Afghanistan-northern
Indian subcontinent, larger than Europe, was reformatted to Indo-Iranian (and
the related Dardic/Nuristani) languages, and the process was still continuing
in historic times.

The only relic, besides the small area of Dravidian-related Brahui speakers
west of the Indus, is a scatter of Dravidian loan-words in Sanskrit and its

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