11 Facts About Altaic languages


Speakers of these Altaic languages are currently scattered over most of Asia north of 35 °N and in some eastern parts of Europe, extending in longitude from Turkey to Japan.

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Since the 1950s, many comparative linguists have rejected the proposal, after supposed cognates were found not to be valid, hypothesized sound shifts were not found, and Turkic and Mongolic Altaic languages were found to be converging rather than diverging over the centuries.

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The name "Altaic languages" referred to the Altai Mountains in East-Central Asia, which are approximately the center of the geographic range of the three main families.

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Altaic languages's book contained the first comprehensive attempt to identify regular correspondences among the sound systems within the Altaic language families.

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Roy Andrew Miller's 1971 book Japanese and the Other Altaic Languages convinced most Altaicists that Japanese belonged to Altaic.

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Since then, the "Macro-Altaic languages" has been generally assumed to include Turkic, Mongolic, Tungusic, Korean, and Japanese.

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Altaic languages's proposed that the ancestral home of the Turkic, Mongolic, and Tungusic languages was somewhere in northwestern Manchuria.

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The fusion of the two Altaic languages would have resulted in proto-Japanese and proto-Korean.

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Altaic languages concluded that the analysis supported the Altaic grouping, although it was "older than most other language families in Eurasia, such as Indo-European or Finno-Ugric, and this is the reason why the modern Altaic languages preserve few common elements".

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For example, although most of today's Altaic languages have vowel harmony, Proto-Altaic as reconstructed by them lacked it; instead, various vowel assimilations between the first and second syllables of words occurred in Turkic, Mongolic, Tungusic, Korean, and Japonic.

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Those critics argued that the words and features shared by Turkic, Mongolic, and Tungusic Altaic languages were for the most part borrowings and that the rest could be attributed to chance resemblances.

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