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Chapter 6

TermDefinition
Language A set of sounds and symbols that is used for communication.
Mutual Intelligibility This means that two people can understand each other when speaking.
Standard Language A published, widely distributed, and purposely taught language. Governments help sustain these by making them official and requiring literacy in the language for government jobs.
Dialect Variants of a standard language along regional or ethnic lines.
Dialect Chain A group of contiguous dialects where the dialects nearest to each other geographically are the most similar and the dialects farther apart are least similar.
Isogloss A geographic boundary within which a particular linguistic feature occurs.
Language family Multiple languages that have a shared but fairly distant origin.
Language subfamilies Divisions within a language family that have more definitive commonalities and more recent common origins.
Cognate A word that has the same origin, that is derived from the same word.
Language Divergence Process where discrete, new languages are eventually formed from one language. This occurs when people speaking two dialects of a language are relatively isolated from each other and have little spatial interaction.
Backward Reconstruction This is tracking consonants and cognates to reconstruct elements of a prior common language; linguists can provide insight into how languages fit together and where the branches were once joined.
Language Convergence This is collapsing two languages into one.. This occurs when people speaking two languages have frequent and consistent spatial interaction with each other.
Extinct Language Languages become extinct either when all descendants perish , which can happen when an entire people succumb to disease or invaders, or when descendants use another language and abandon learning and speaking their native language.
Conquest Theory Idea that early speakers of Proto-Indo-European left the hearth area and moved westward on horseback, overpowering earlier inhabitants and beginning the diffusion and differentiation of Indo-European tongues.
Agriculture Theory The theory that the Proto-Indo-European language spread with the diffusion of agriculture.
Vernacular A vernacular language is one used in everyday interaction among a group of people.
Lingua franca A language used among speakers of different languages for the purposes of trade and commerce.
Pidgin language When people speaking two or more languages are in contact and they combine parts of their languages in a simplified structure and vocabulary.
Creole Language A pidgin language that has developed a more complex structure and vocabulary, and has become the native language of a group of people.
Toponym These are place-names that allow us to see location as a place and imparts a certain character to a place.
Created by: pl250331
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