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Posted by / 31-Dec-2017 16:08

Lexico statistical dating

However, the decisions may need to be refined as the state of knowledge increases.

However, lexicostatistics does not rely on all the decisions being correct, for each pair of lists the cognacy of a form could be positive, negative or indeterminate.

Lexicostatistics is related to the comparative method but does not reconstruct a proto-language, it is to be distinguished from glottochronology, which attempts to use lexicostatistical methods to estimate the length of time since two or more languages diverged from a common earlier proto-language.

This is merely one application of lexicostatistics, however; other applications of it may not share the assumption of a constant rate of change for basic lexical items.

Creation of the language tree is based solely on the table found above.

Various sub-grouping methods can be used but that adopted by Dyen, Krustal and Black was: Calculations have to be of nucleus and group lexical percentages.

Swadesh reduced a larger set of meanings down to 200 originally, he later found that it was necessary to reduce it further but that he could include some meanings that were not in his original list, giving his later 100-item list.

Gudschinsky (1956) questioned whether it was possible to obtain a universal list.

Factors such as borrowing, tradition and taboo can skew the results, as with other methods.

This is merely one application of lexicostatistics, however, and other applications of it may not share the assumption of a constant rate of change for basic lexical items.

Other features of a language may be used other than the lexicon, though this is not usual.

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A leading exponent of lexicostatistics application has been Isidore Dyen, he used lexicostatistics to classify Austronesian languages as well as Indo-European ones.

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