koenraad.elst at PANDORA.BE
Mon Jan 17 07:26:30 EST 2000
The theory of the post-Glacial flood (rise of the sea level with 100 m) as
the trigger of huge migrations including the initial migration of the
Proto-Indo-Europeans, as mentioned by Dr. Wujastyk, is eminently sensible.
But the Black Sea is not the only formerly inhabited territory whence
important migrations have taken
place, though elsewhere the process of inundation was more gradual. Flooded
territories still inhabited in ca. 8000 BC include the Red Sea, Persian
Gulf, the continental shelf in front of Maharashtra and Gujarat (homeland of
the Elamites and Dravidians?) and around the Maledives.
In territorial extension, the most important such territory was the Sunda
Java, Borneo, Thailand, Vietnam, Taiwan and China. S. Oppenheimer (Eden in
the East, 1999) argues that the latter is the source of the Neolithic
Revolution and of the Austronesian and Austro-Asiatic language groups, who
migrated to the east, north and west, including India. That the Nicobarese
and Munda languages belong to the Austro-Asiatic family is well-known. The
main Indian language families also contain elements from Austronesian, which
expanded all across the Pacific Ocean, but also westward past India to
Madagascar. As Isidore Dyen argued in a long-forgotten paper in 1966, there
is an intriguing, hard-to-explain but undeniable common element in the core
vocabulary of Indo-European and Austronesian, including the first four
numerals, the pronouns, and simple terms like those for "earth" and "water".
To repeat Dr. Wujastyk's question: any thoughts about this from others?
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