3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

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3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by eldin raigmore » Sun 05 Nov 2017, 17:21

(Not really sure this should be in the Conlangs subforum or the Linguistics-&-Natlangs section?)

Suppose we have a 3Cons (a Tri-Consonantal-Root language) that is descended from a 2Cons protolang (a Bi-Consonantal-Root proto-language).

Here are three things that might happen.

1) Maybe: For any six consonants C1, C2, C3, C4, C5, and C6;
If any three of C1-C2-C5, C1-C2-C6, C3-C4-C5, or C3-C4-C6, are attested roots in the 'lang;
then (a) "with (overwhelmingly?) greater-than-chance frequency", the fourth one is also a root in the 'lang,
AND: (1b) "with (overwhelmingly?) greater-than-chance frequency", the semantic relationship between C1-C2-C5 and C1-C2-C6, is the same (or almost the same?) as the semantic relationship between C3-C4-C5 and C3-C4-C6.

2) Maybe: For any six consonants C1, C2, C3, C4, C5, and C6;
If any three of C1-C3-C4, C1-C5-C6, C2-C3-C4, or C2-C5-C6, are attested roots in the 'lang;
then (a) "with (overwhelmingly?) greater-than-chance frequency", the fourth one is also a root in the 'lang,
AND: (2b) "with (overwhelmingly?) greater-than-chance frequency", the semantic relationship between C1-C3-C4 and C2-C3-C4, is the same (or almost the same?) as the semantic relationship between C1-C5-C6 and C2-C5-C6.

3) Maybe: For any six consonants C1, C2, C3, C4, C5, and C6;
If any three of C1-C2-C3, C1-C4-C5, C2-C3-C6, or C4-C5-C6, are attested roots in the 'lang;
then (a) "with (overwhelmingly?) greater-than-chance frequency", the fourth one is also a root in the 'lang,
AND: (3b) "with (overwhelmingly?) greater-than-chance frequency", the semantic relationship between C1-C2-C3 and C2-C3-C6, is the same (or almost the same?) as the semantic relationship between C1-C4-C5 and C4-C5-C6.

Questions:
I. For each of those three statements, is there a RL 3Cons Natlang for which that statement is true? (And if so, what is one such natlang?) (this is really three questions.)
II. For each pair of those three statements, is there a RL 3Cons Natlang for which both of those statements are true? (And if so, what is one such natlang?) (this also is really three questions.) (Any positive answer to II would imply two positive answers to I. Any two positive answers to II would imply three positive answers to I.)
III. Is there a RL 3Cons Natlang for which all three of those statements are true? (And if so, what is one such natlang?) (A positive answer to III would imply three positive answers to II.)

Questions I, II, and III above, are short-answer questions. They may require an awful lot of research, but no theorizing.
Questions IV and V below are more essay-questions.


IV. If there is one of those statements which is not true of any RL 3Cons natlang, (A) Is there a reason why not? AND (B) Is that reason such that no conlang satisfying that statement would be naturalistic nand/nor realistic?
V. If there are two of those statements which are never both simultaneoussly true of any RL 3Cons natlang, (A) Is there a reason why not? AND (B) Is that reason such that no conlang simultaneously satisfying both of those statements would be naturalistic nand/nor realistic?

My guesses, without any research, are that:
I. 1 probably happens in a natlang; and,
I. 2 somewhat-less-probably-but-still probably also happens in a natlang; and,
I. if one of them doesn't happen in any natlang it is probably 3; and,
II. that it's by no means improbable that 1 and 2 do not both happen together in any natlang.
III. If those guesses are true, then the answer to III is "no".

My guesses about IV and V are, that EITHER all 3Cons roots in the daughterlang that are derived from the protolang are derived from a root + a suffix, OR ELSE all 3Cons roots in the daughterlang that are derived from the protolang are derived from a prefix + a root.

If 1 and 2 can happen together in a natlang, then I guess 3 can also happen in (either the same or some different) natlang.
Conversely if 3 can happen in some natlang, then I guess the combinations 1+2, and 1+3, and 2+3, can also happen in some natlang.

Is anyone aware of any already-existing conlang that would be relevant for this question?
Some of us are working on (or have worked on) 3Cons conlangs; some of those are working on (or have worked on) deriving that conlang from a 2Cons con-proto-lang.
If you are one of those, which of statements 1 and/or 2 and/or 3 do you plan to make true of your conlang?


Edit: I could have also added a 4th* statement:
1) Maybe: For any six consonants C1, C2, C3, C4, C5, and C6;
If any three of C1-C3-C5, C1-C4-C5, C2-C3-C6, or C2-C4-C6, are attested roots in the 'lang;
then (a) "with (overwhelmingly?) greater-than-chance frequency", the fourth one is also a root in the 'lang,
AND: (1b) "with (overwhelmingly?) greater-than-chance frequency", the semantic relationship between C1-C3-C5 and C1-C4-C5, is the same (or almost the same?) as the semantic relationship between C2-C3-C6 and C2-C4-C6.

I didn't because I thought that had to be a minority phenomenon, if it occurred at all; I think it could happen only if the 2Cons protolang were heavy on infixes.
So it's not impossible but less likely than the other three IMO (or, rather, IMG).

*1 has to do with suffixes in the protolang, and 2 has to do with prefixes in the protolang, and 3 has to do with both together. Clearly I could have made a 5th and 6th statement about suffixes-with-infixes and respectively prefixes-with-infixes in the protolang. I didn't.
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by Ahzoh » Sun 05 Nov 2017, 20:17

It's become realized that the majority of 3con roots did not derive from 2con roots or monosyllabic roots, but were their own thing.
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by eldin raigmore » Sun 05 Nov 2017, 22:00

Ahzoh wrote:It's become realized that the majority of 3con roots did not derive from 2con roots or monosyllabic roots, but were their own thing.
In RL it doesn't surprise me that that's true of the majority of 3Cons roots; but it would surprise me to learn that there aren't at least a significant minority of RL 3Cons in which at least a significant minority of 3Cons roots are derived from 2Cons or monosyllabic roots.

Can you point me to a couple of references showing that "... the majority of 3Cons roots did not derive from 2Cons nor monosyllabic roots, but ..."?
It'd be nice if at least one of them has a URL.

Anyway, my questions about natlangs were inspired by the idea that some 3Cons roots might be derived from 2Cons roots+suffix or 2Cons prefix+roots; but do not pre-require that.

And I know that at least one of us is developing a 3Cons conlang around the idea that it descended from a 2Cons con-protolang; some of my questions were about that.

So I'd appreciate answers anyway.

[hr][/hr]

Thanks for answering!

BTW @Ahzoh:
Spoiler:
BTW about stem derivation in Algonquian languages and that Initial(+(Medial+)Final) template ---
Most of the more recent work seems to be calling that idea into question, at least about RL Algonquian natlangs.
It's still IMO a useful idea for conlangers; I know at least one pretty-good conlang that follows that template some 90+x% of the time.
Want me to PM you about any of that?
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by Ahzoh » Sun 05 Nov 2017, 22:16

eldin raigmore wrote:
Ahzoh wrote:It's become realized that the majority of 3con roots did not derive from 2con roots or monosyllabic roots, but were their own thing.
In RL it doesn't surprise me that that's true of the majority of 3Cons roots; but it would surprise me to learn that there aren't at least a significant minority of RL 3Cons in which at least a significant minority of 3Cons roots are derived from 2Cons or monosyllabic roots.

Can you point me to a couple of references showing that "... the majority of 3Cons roots did not derive from 2Cons nor monosyllabic roots, but ..."?
It'd be nice if at least one of them has a URL.
It was so claimed by tiramisu and scholars/Semitists:
http://www.incatena.org/viewtopic.php?f ... 9#p1138738
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by qwed117 » Sun 05 Nov 2017, 22:59

You don't need to crosspost to the Linguistics subforum. I think it's more reasonable to let a mod transfer the thread.
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by Davush » Sun 05 Nov 2017, 23:18

eldin raigmore wrote:
Anyway, my questions about natlangs were inspired by the idea that some 3Cons roots might be derived from 2Cons roots+suffix or 2Cons prefix+roots; but do not pre-require that.

And I know that at least one of us is developing a 3Cons conlang around the idea that it descended from a 2Cons con-protolang; some of my questions were about that.

So I'd appreciate answers anyway.
I'm not sure I totally understood the very first post, but I think it's been reasonably postulated that at least some Arabic tri-consonantal roots might have been originally bi-consonantal, with affixes which then became analysed as part of the root. You could take this further if you had a large and productive enough set of affixes which eventually become lexicalized (and probably eroded) on the root, giving a tricon language? Sorry if this wasn't what you had in mind though...! [:D]
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by Xonen » Sun 05 Nov 2017, 23:19

qwed117 wrote:You don't need to crosspost to the Linguistics subforum. I think it's more reasonable to let a mod transfer the thread.
Right. Deleted the doublet. I kept this one because it's the one that had been replied to; I'll let it stay here for now, although perhaps this is more of a natlang question.
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by Salmoneus » Mon 06 Nov 2017, 01:50

eldin raigmore wrote:
Ahzoh wrote:It's become realized that the majority of 3con roots did not derive from 2con roots or monosyllabic roots, but were their own thing.
In RL it doesn't surprise me that that's true of the majority of 3Cons roots; but it would surprise me to learn that there aren't at least a significant minority of RL 3Cons in which at least a significant minority of 3Cons roots are derived from 2Cons or monosyllabic roots.
You're talking like "3Cons" is a category. But there's only one triconsonantal language - Proto-Semitic (and its descendents). There's no point asking about minority ways of developing triconsonantalism, because you can't have a minority from a total sample size of 1...
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by eldin raigmore » Mon 06 Nov 2017, 03:02

Salmoneus wrote:You're talking like "3Cons" is a category. But there's only one triconsonantal language - Proto-Semitic (and its descendents). There's no point asking about minority ways of developing triconsonantalism, because you can't have a minority from a total sample size of 1...
It was my impression that there were more than one.
Some are other Afro-Asiatic but not Semitic languages, if I recall correctly, which maybe I don't.
And IIRC there's at least one other on another continent entirely; the New World or Oceania or some such place, ISTR.

And assuming you are correct; I'm not asking about their last common ancestor; I'm asking about the languages themselves. And there are definitely more than one Semitic 3Cons natlangs.
And I'm asking about their synchronic lexicon/vocabulary, not about how that came about diachronically.
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by qwed117 » Mon 06 Nov 2017, 03:48

I'm still struggling to figure out what the question really is here. I guess, if you reduce it down to a simple question it would be "Do biconsonantal roots gain consonants at random when becoming triconsonantal?". That sounds like a definite no, simply based on the fact that consonants would probably follow phonosyntactic rules regarding their occurrence. The jury is still out on whether these tend to form derivational patterns however. I'd also think it's safe to say that either Q1 or Q2 would occur more often than the other. Q3 asks whether affixational patterns are common over similar roots. I figure it is probably safe to say this is true, but not absolute.

It's probably safer to just think of this concatenatively.
Spoiler:
1a) If two words take the same suffix in one situation, would they take the same suffix in another situation?

perceive/ perception / perceived
justify / justification / justified
testify / testimony / testified
(Testification today has become a rare archaic word)

So, it's not 100% true

1b) If two words take a suffix, do they tend to have the same semantic relation?

deter / deterred / deterrent
act / acted / agent
absorb /absorbed / absorbent
(agent is the sole one without a adjectival meaning)

So, it's not 100% true,

2a) If two words take the same prefix in one situation, would they take the same prefix in another situation?

quiet / unquiet / disquiet
ease / unease / disease
paid / unpaid / *dispaid

So, it's not 100% true,

2b) If two words take a prefix, do they tend to have the same semantic relation?

typical / untypical / atypicial
political / impolitic / apolitical
flame / inflame / aflame

So, it's not 100% true,
Assuming that there is some affixial relationship between biconsonantal roots and their triconsonantal derivations, we would expect that the conditions that eldin raigmore suggests to occur often, but not monolithically.
Spoiler:
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by eldin raigmore » Mon 06 Nov 2017, 05:37

qwed117 wrote:.... (relevant stuff) ...
Assuming that there is some affixial relationship between biconsonantal roots and their triconsonantal derivations, we would expect that the conditions that eldin raigmore suggests to occur often, but not monolithically.
As far as 3Cons natlangs in RL go, that's kinda what I was getting at.
Is there evidence that some non-negligible subset of "modern" 3Cons roots derived
from biconsonantal-root + one-consonant-suffix and/or
from one-consonant-prefix + biconsonantal-root?

Does it rise to statistical significance? That is, "greater-than-chance frequency"?

[hr][/hr]

OTOH as far as 3Cons conlangs go:
I was just pointing out that some conlangers who create a 3Cons conlang, derive it from a conprotolang or protoconlang which is a 2Cons;
and wondering how one would go about that task.

[hr][/hr]

It has been my understanding that "triconsonantalism" arose when for several paradigms there was one "cell" of the form C1C2VC3 and also another "cell" of the form C1VC2C3. Speakers began to regard the three consonants in the roots as separable. I assume (I don't recall having been told) that the language already had ablaut/apophony. If the consonants of the root are separable, and apophony/ablaut just runs wild throughout the paradigms of the language's verbs and/or nouns, then you wind up with a 3Cons.
I'm not sure that what actually did happen, had to happen.
But at least one publication said essentially what I said in that last paragraph -- if I understood it correctly.
If that's true, it would appear that (most of the relevant) ancestral roots, as they occurred at that time in the ancestor language, already had three consonants; it's just that not every last form of a given word was expressed via a transfix or binyan or awzan.

[hr][/hr]

Between Ahzoh's and Salmoneus's remarks this thread really should be here in the Conlangs subforum, not on the Linguistics&Natlangs subforum. So phrasing my original nine(?) questions as being about natlangs might have been confusing; sorry!

As for qwed's "not always true" -- I'm not looking for "always true", I'm looking for "statistically significantly often true".

But yes, qwed, I think you did a fine job of understanding the questions, and you may have done a better job than I of clarifying the questions for other readers (I hope respnders!).
Thanks!
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by eldin raigmore » Tue 07 Nov 2017, 20:05

Xonen wrote:Deleted the doublet.
Sorry, I didn't see Xonen's post.
I assumed there'd been some sort of error on my part, or some glitch.
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Re: 3Cons descended from a 2Cons protolang

Post by eldin raigmore » Sun 12 Nov 2017, 05:06

Davush wrote:
Sun 05 Nov 2017, 23:18
I'm not sure I totally understood the very first post, but I think it's been reasonably postulated that at least some Arabic tri-consonantal roots might have been originally bi-consonantal, with affixes which then became analysed as part of the root. You could take this further if you had a large and productive enough set of affixes which eventually become lexicalized (and probably eroded) on the root, giving a tricon language? Sorry if this wasn't what you had in mind though...! [:D]
That's totally what I had in mind! Thanks!
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