Paired Horse and PIE breakup

Paul Kekai Manansala kekai at JPS.NET
Wed Nov 11 00:40:19 UTC 1998

Miguel Carrasquer Vidal wrote:
> "N. Ganesan" <naga_ganesan at HOTMAIL.COM> wrote:
> >Catal Hayuk in Anatolia is not the only site
> >where Agriculture originated. Mehrgarh in
> >Indus valley culture may have done it even earlier.
> >See Shaffer below. Mehrgarh has nothing to do with
> >IE languages.
> Of course not.  Agriculture (of the wheat/barley kind) originated
> neither in Catal Huyuk nor in Mehrgarh.  The earliest sites so far
> are in the "fertile crescent", from Palestine through Syria, Southern
> Turkey and Northern Iraq to Western Iran.   Presumably these earliest
> farmers spoke Semitic, Sumerian and Elamite languages (and possibly
> some others that have left no record).

Maybe, but I would think at least pre-Semitic and pre-Sumerian.
Sumerians by their own accord came by sea from Dilmun, although I know
there is some controversy surrounding this subject. Semitic speakers
probably came only around 5,000 to 4,000 BCE (using biological
anthropology as a guide). Using the migrations occurred after the change
of monsoons in the Sahara, it would seem the first evidence of AA
speakers in Palestine is associated with the early wavy-handled pottery.

The Elamites, however, might well be related linguistically to these
early farmers.

> Farming later spread NW into
> Anatolia (Catal Huyuk) and Europe, SW into Egypt, Sudan and North
> Africa and East into Iran and India (Mehrgarh), but it was not the
> languages of the original farmers that spread, but rather those of
> peoples that had been on the periphery of the initial agricultural
> zone (Proto-Indo-Europeans? Proto-Dravidians? Proto-Egyptians?).

Again, we come to the problem of whether the spread of agriculture
requires demographic changes.

Given the case in Europe, didn't the pre-IE languages have non-IE terms
for agriculture?  This would indicate the first people to spread
agriculture to Europe were pre-IE folk like the Etruscans (and possibly
the Basques, Iberians and Picts.)

Paul Kekai Manansala

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