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18 Facts About Germanic languages
East Germanic languages branch included Gothic, Burgundian, and Vandalic, all of which are now extinct.
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Some West Germanic languages did not survive past the Migration Period, including Lombardic.
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All Germanic languages are thought to be descended from a hypothetical Proto-Germanic, united by subjection to the sound shifts of Grimm's law and Verner's law.
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North Germanic languages is only attested in scattered runic inscriptions, as Proto-Norse, until it evolves into Old Norse by about 800.
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East Germanic languages were marginalized from the end of the Migration Period.
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Germanic languages possess a number of defining features compared with other Indo-European languages.
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Roughly speaking, Germanic languages differ in how conservative or how progressive each language is with respect to an overall trend toward analyticity.
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That is, if two Germanic languages in a family share a characteristic that is not observed in a third language, that is evidence of common ancestry of the two Germanic languages only if the characteristic is an innovation compared to the family's proto-language.
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Proto-Germanic languages developed a strong stress accent on the first syllable of the root, but remnants of the original free PIE accent are visible due to Verner's Law, which was sensitive to this accent.
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Oldest Germanic languages have the typical complex inflected morphology of old Indo-European languages, with four or five noun cases; verbs marked for person, number, tense and mood; multiple noun and verb classes; few or no articles; and rather free word order.
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An important innovation in Proto-Germanic languages was the development of two separate sets of adjective endings, originally corresponding to a distinction between indefinite semantics and definite semantics .
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All living Germanic languages belong either to the West Germanic or to the North Germanic branch.
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The West Germanic languages group is the larger by far, further subdivided into Anglo-Frisian on one hand and Continental West Germanic languages on the other.
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East Germanic includes most notably the extinct Gothic and Crimean Gothic languages.
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From roughly the 2nd century AD, certain speakers of early Germanic languages varieties developed the Elder Futhark, an early form of the runic alphabet.
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