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This page collects some useful links for on-line resources and downloads relating to historical linguistics
and linguistics data. There has been no attempt to be systematic or comprehensive, these are merely sites that Dorian has found useful.

South Asia & West Eurasia

Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Project (Leiden)
a list of standard Proto-Indo-European roots can be found on Wikipedia

For an overview of Indo-European and historical linguistics, see the course materials of Mark Damen, Utah State University. AlsoIndo-European languages and historical linguistics gathers more information & resources, inlcuding online books & maps, compiled by J. Slocum, University of Texas at Austin, Linguistics Research Center..

Digital Dictionaries of South Asia
including the Dravidian Etymological Dictionary (DEDR) and Turner's Comparatve Indo-Aryan (CDIAL)

South Asian Residual Vocabulary Assemblage (historical linguistics)
managed by Frank Southworth and Michael Witzel

Michael Wiztel's "Early Sources for South Asian Substrate Languages" Mother Tongue special issue 1999 [PDF]

Witzel, M. (2005). Central Asian roots and acculturation in South Asia: Liguistic and archaeological evidence from Western Central Asia, the Hindukush and Northwestern South Asia for Early Indo-Aryan language and religion. In: Osada, T., Liguistics, Archaeology and the Human Past. Research Institute for Humanity and Nature, Kyoto, pp. 87-211. [pdf]

Kusunda (a language isolate of Nepal): B. K. Rana (2002) "New Materials on Kusunda Language" on-line paper

Dorian's downloads includes some papers correlating South Asian archaeology and linguistics

George Van Driem's publications on Himalayan Languages. A complete list is here, but only a few are available for download.

Resources on various Indian scripts and languages


Southeast Asia & East Asia

Starostin's†and Ruhlen's Tower of Babel databases. This includes databases for Altaic, Sino-Tibetan, Dravidian, Uralic, Afroastiatic, etc. Although some reconsturctions may be regarded as controversial. It includes the hypothetical Austric, Nostratic and Sino-Caucasian superphyla.

An introduction & overview of Mon-Khmer languages, by Dr. Paul Sidwell, linguist at Australia National University. As see info. on his projects and publications.

A.V. Haye's Austric vocabulary list. This can be regarded as controversial.

Roger Blench's articles, include several on this region

Austronesian Basic Vocabulary database (Auckland)

Peter Bellwood's Prehistory of the Indo-Malaysian Archipelago (1997) is now available as a free e-book with a new 2007 preface, from Australia National University Press.

The Austronesians, edited by P. Bellwood, J. Fox and D. Tynon is available as an e-book from ANU Press.

The lexicon of Proto Oceanic. The culture and environment of
ancestral Oceanic society 2, The physical environment
, is now available as a free e-book from Australia National University Press.

detailed topographical maps of SE Asia. For the languages of SE Asia try this map from S. Huffman.

language map of China

Berthold Laufer (1919) Sino-Iranica, [PDF 17.2 MB] as a Google ebook. This provides historical and linguistic evidence on the spread of several crops to or from China in antiquity. Other Chinese historical sources are available as e-books via University of Oregon e-Asia library

Chinese to Latin Plant Names, as part of the Flora of China project of Missouri Botanic Garden & Chinese Academy of Science. [this resource is not always complete in terms of vernacular names]

Also try the Digital Flora of China, produced in Hubei. This site provides decsriptions in Chinese as well as images of Chinese plants. It is an easy way to find Chinese scientific equivalents to Latin names. Search on a latin name, and in the results the first column is the Chinese scientific name, the second column in the Chinese plant family name, and the fourth column is the genus name. The last column links to further information and images.


BLR3- Bantu Lexical Reconstructions

Roger Blench's articles, include many useful papers and maps on this region

Starostin's†and Ruhlen's Tower of Babel databases. Also includes Afro-Asiatic reconsturctions (controversial) and Khoisan.





. New Project: SEALINKS - Bridging Continents Across the Sea


Ethnologue. Sumner Institute of Linguistics. Database of all known languages and their classification.

Language distribution maps, prepared by Stephen Huffman.

The Rosetta Project This also containa a page for all languages, although many are still blank. It provides an interactive language phylogeny. To start search in the box for a particular language.

Wictionary's free multilingual dictionary.

Evolution of Human Languages project, Santa Fe institute. This is also linked to Starostin's Tower of Babel databases.

An economic botany polyglot: the mutli-lingual, multi-script plant names database, especially for Asian names.

Association for the study of Linguistic Prehistory, with contents for the journal Mother Tongue




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Last modified: 28/2/2008