18.104.22.168:55: QAREFREE QRABS
In my last entry, I reconstructed uvulars for
鱟 MC *ʔœk < OC *qrok 'horseshoe crab'
蟹 MC *ɣɛʔ < OC *m-qreʔ 'crab'sharing a root *qrVK on the basis of Sagart's (2007) uvular hypothesis. Sagart distinguishes between
- 'pure velar phonetic series with Middle Chinese *k- *kh- *g- *ɣ- (< *g-)
- 'mixed' velar phonetic series with any of the above initials plus MC *x- and/or glottal *ʔ-
He reconstructs 'pure' series with Old Chinese velars and 'mixed' series with Old Chinese uvulars.
The phonetic series for 鱟 'horseshoe crab' (GSR 1038 學) is mixed, so it must have originally been uvular according to Sagart's hypothesis. However, the phonetic series for 蟹 'crab' (GSR 861 解) is not mixed, so why do I reconstruct it as uvular? The key lies with another mixed series (GSR 112 后):
|GSR phonetic #||Schuessler 2009 phonetic #||Phonetic||Middle Chinese initials of phonetic series; initials unambiguously of Old Chinese uvular origin in bold||Old Chinese archetype|
|1038||14-3||學||*k-, *kh-, *ɣ-, *ʔ-||*Qruk|
|861||7-7||解||*k, *ɣ- (but no *x- or *ʔ-!)||*QreH|
|112||10-5||后||*k-, *kh-, *ɣ-, *x-||*QoH|
('Archetypes' are formulae representing the common denominator of readings in a phonetic series.)
The word 邂逅 'carefree', reconstructed by Schuessler (2007: 313) as Old Chinese *grêh-g(r)ôh with two velars, is a reduplicated derivative of 解 'careless', which in turn is a derivative of 解 'loosen' (Schuessler 2007: 313). If GSR 112 is uvular, then 逅 must have had a uvular initial, and be a reduplication of 邂 with a uvular initial. Here's how I reconstruct this word family:
解 'loosen': MC *kɛʔ < OC *Cʌ-qreʔ
解 'careless': MC *ɣɛʔ < OC *N-qreʔ
邂逅 'carefree': MC *ɣɛʔ-ɣəwʔ < OC *N-qreʔ-N-qroʔ
Although the root of 解 'loosen'/'careless' (OC *qreʔ) is homophonous with the root of 蟹 'crab' (OC *qreʔ), the two roots are unrelated.
解 'loosen' and 'careless' may be the same word with or without a presyllabic vowel: OC *N(ʌ)-qreʔ.
22.214.171.124:59: A STUDIOUS FISH
I forgot to mention last night that the Tangut characters
4803 2lɨi 'to see'
0046 2le 'to see'
are as related as the words they represent. I presume graph 4803 is derived from graph 0046* which in turn may be based on Chinese 見 'see' (but with 目 turned 90 degrees).
Adding an abbreviated form of 學 'study' to 見 'see' results in 覺 'wake up', and replacing the 見 of 覺 with 魚 'fish' results in 鱟 'horseshoe crab'.
鱟 'horseshoe crab' is not attested before Middle Chinese. Jiyun lists four fanqie for 鱟 implying the Middle Chinese readings
The first three rhyme, but the third and fourth have nonvelar initials and the fourth doesn't rhyme with the others, though it does rhyme with the phonetic
學 *ɣœk < Old Chinese *ɢruk 'study, learn'
endopassive of 覺 *kœk < Old Chinese *Cʌ-qruk 'wake up, get insight'
Are the four readings of 鱟 'horseshoe crab' two or more unrelated words? I think it's possible to reconcile the four readings by deriving them from different affixes attached to an Old Chinese root *qrok:
下遘切 MC *ɣəwh < OC *m-qrok-s
fusion of *m-q- into *ɢ- > *ʁ- > *ɣ-
the prefix could be some other nasal, but I reconstruct m- since
- Sagart (1999: 85) reconstructed an m- prefix in "names of small animals" (but a horseshoe crab is not small!)
- there is an m-variant for 'horseshoe crab' (see below)
fusion of *-k-s into *-x > *-h
訏候切 MC *xəwh < OC *s-qrok-s
fusion of *s-q- into *qh- > *χ- > *x-
莫候切 MC *məwh < OC *m-qrok-s
alternative fusion of *m-q- into *m- instead of *ɢ- > *ɣ- (different dialect?)
for another language in which two different fusion processes applied to the same cluster, see Table 1 ("two paths of cluster simplification in Nha Heun") in Sagart (1999: 17; after Ferlus 1971)
乙角切 MC *ʔœk < OC *qrok
Could 鱟 MC *ʔœk < OC *qrok 'horseshoe crab' be related to 蟹 MC *ɣɛʔ < OC *ɢreʔ 'crab'? At first glance, they only share emphasis (underlining) and *-r-. However,
- OC *ɢ- may be from *m-q- (with *m- being the small animal prefix again)
- OC *e and *o may alternate (see Schuessler 2007 )
- OC *-k and *-ʔ may alternate (see Sagart 1999: 134 and Schuessler 2007: 31)
Of course, horseshoe crabs and crabs are not closely biologically related in spite of their English names. Horseshoe crabs are chelicrates, not crustaceans like true crabs.
*1.20.00:36: Precious Rhymes of the Tangraphic Sea has a circular derivation for 0046:
0046 2le 'to see' =
2258 2khy 'to examine' +
4803 2lɨi 'to see'
2258 is obviously derived from 0046, not the other way around.
If I am correct about 0046 being derived from Chinese 見, then 4803 is 'horned hat' atop an abbreviation of 0046.
126.96.36.199:59: DOES ANYONE SEE THIS SITE ANYMORE?
I haven't posted anything in the last two weeks, though I did write one entry ten days ago. (A whole week went by without me blogging! Oops!) I switched computers recently and haven't figured out how to upload entries from this machine. I'll find out - that is, struggle - tonight.
The title refers to these Tangut words for 'see' which are paired together twice in Homophones (49A68, 52A61):
4803 2lɨi 'to see'
0046 2le 'to see'
On Friday, I realized that these words might be related to Written Tibetan lta 'to see' and Old Chinese 睹 *taʔ. (Gong linked the latter two in his 1995 "The System of Finals in Proto-Sino-Tibetan".)
Tangut l- can either be from *l- or from a lenited dental stop (*CV-T-). So it's possible that the proto-Tangut word for 'to see' was *CV-taH (with an *-H representing the segmental source of tone 2). The vowel of the presyllable may have conditioned different degrees of fronting and raising in the main syllable:
*CV1-taH > 2lɨi (there is no 2li in Tangut)
*CV2-taH > 2le
For more on vowel fronting and raising ('brightening') in Tangut, see Matisoff (2004).
For other pairs of -i ~ -e (R10/11 ~ R36/37) verbs, see example sets o and q in Gong's "The Phonological Reconstruction of Tangut".