SV: SV: Paired Horse and PIE breakup

Miguel Carrasquer Vidal mcv at WXS.NL
Mon Nov 9 18:16:24 UTC 1998

Paul Kekai Manansala <kekai at JPS.NET> wrote:

>The former classification had Hamito-Semitic (which included Cushitic)
>together as a subfamily of Afro-Asiatic.  According to Greenberg,
>Cushitic and Semitic are not part of the same subfamily.

Since Greenberg invented the term "Afro-Asiatic", any former
classification would not have included Hamito-Semitic as a
"subfamily" of Afro-Asiatic.  And which other subfamilies might this
mythical pre-Greenbergian "Afro-Asiatic" have had?

Maybe the following diagram can be of assistance:

Former classification:

Hamito-Semitic ______ Semitic
               |_____ Hamitic ____ Berber
                              |___ (Chadic) [often excluded]
                              |___ Cushitic
                              |___ Egyptian

Greenberg's classification:

Afro-Asiatic _________ Berber
             |________ Chadic
             |________ Cushitic
             |________ Egyptian
             |________ Semitic

Or simply consult any dictionary or encyclopaedia, like Merriam
Webster's: adj (1953): of, relating to, or being a family of
languages widely distributed over southwestern Asia and Africa
comprising the Semitic, Egyptian, Berber, Cushitic, and Chadic
subfamilies. adj (1901): of, relating to, or constituting the
Afro-Asiatic languages -- Hamito-Semitic n. adj (1844): of, relating to, or characteristic of the
Hamites or one of the Hamitic languages.

Hamitic n (ca. 1890): -> hamitic languages

Hamitic languages n pl (ca. 1890): any of various groupings of
non-Semitic Afro-Asiatic languages (as Berber, Egyptian, and
Cushitic) that were formerly thought to comprise a single branch of
the Afro-Asiatic family.

Miguel Carrasquer Vidal
mcv at

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