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Old East Slavic - UniLang

Old East Slavic

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sa wulfs
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Old East Slavic

Postby sa wulfs » 2014-03-21, 10:51

Hi folks,

Does anybody here have a good knowledge of early Old East Slavic? I'm trying to do some research for a project and I've encountered some difficulties, the biggest one being that many Modern Russian speakers seem to believe their language hasn't really changed since then, minor spelling issues aside. For example, I'm finding conflicting information about the dropping of the yers, which my Russian-speaking pals insist wouldn't affect pronunciation, but I'm fairly confident in believing that, by the late 10th century, they wouldn't have been dropped yet (in an area roughly corresponding to what's now northern Ukraine or southern Belarus).

For example, consider a fictional settlement name Дубоград (Dubograd). Would the OES form be Дубоградъ (Dubogradŭ), with the yer being pronounced? Would the linking vowel between Дуб- and -град(ъ) be different in OES? For the name of the Dnieper, I think it should be Дънѣпръ (Dŭněprŭ), with all three vowels still being pronounced circa 1000 AD, at least in careful speech, aye?

If it turns out anyone can help me, I'll probably have plenty more questions. :P

Cheers!
http://ungelicisus.blogspot.com
Hrōþabaírhts sa Wulfs | Hrōðbeorht se Wulf | Hróðbjartr Úlfrinn | Hruodperaht der Wolf | Hrôthberht thê Wulf

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mōdgethanc
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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby mōdgethanc » 2014-03-23, 21:08

Not that I'm an expert or anything, but at one point the yers were definitely vowels and IIRC Proto-Slavic didn't allow closed syllables at all.

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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby sa wulfs » 2014-03-27, 10:07

Yeah, I've been doing more research since I posted this thread, emailing some scholars and the like, and it would seem the consensus is that by this era they hadn't been dropped yet, although their pronunciation isn't clear (perhaps something in the vicinity of [ɵ], [ɤ] or even [ɯ̽] for ъ, and [ɪ], [ɪ̈] or [ɘ] for ь). Using the yers themselves when transliterating is common practice, but ŭ and ĭ, and ' and '', are also used, giving Rusь, Rus' or Rusĭ for Роусь. However, one professor recommended me to use ŏ and ě as an unorthodox but more faithful way to represent their pronunciation ca. 1000 AD.
http://ungelicisus.blogspot.com
Hrōþabaírhts sa Wulfs | Hrōðbeorht se Wulf | Hróðbjartr Úlfrinn | Hruodperaht der Wolf | Hrôthberht thê Wulf

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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby mōdgethanc » 2014-03-27, 14:55

sa wulfs wrote:Yeah, I've been doing more research since I posted this thread, emailing some scholars and the like, and it would seem the consensus is that by this era they hadn't been dropped yet, although their pronunciation isn't clear (perhaps something in the vicinity of [ɵ], [ɤ] or even [ɯ̽] for ъ, and [ɪ], [ɪ̈] or [ɘ] for ь). Using the yers themselves when transliterating is common practice, but ŭ and ĭ, and ' and '', are also used, giving Rusь, Rus' or Rusĭ for Роусь.
I've seen the breves more often, which I prefer since it says "we think this was some kind of high front vowel and this was some kind of high back vowel, but that's it".
However, one professor recommended me to use ŏ and ě as an unorthodox but more faithful way to represent their pronunciation ca. 1000 AD.
Problems with that: a) we don't know how exactly they were pronounced b) <ě> is already used for the letter yat which was something like [jæ].

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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby sa wulfs » 2014-03-27, 17:12

Yes, he did mention the transliteration of ѣ would then be ambiguous, but on the whole he thought that system would be better for the purposes of capturing OES as it was ca. 1000 AD. It's true that we don't know exactly how they were pronounced, but that problem applies to ŭ and ĭ too, and according to him ŏ and ě would be more likely to be close to the actual pronunciation. Personally I prefer to use ŭ and ĭ because, as long as we don't know better, we might as well keep it consistent with our transliteration of OCS and Proto-Slavic.
http://ungelicisus.blogspot.com
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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby mōdgethanc » 2014-03-27, 21:19

Wait a minute. How much does "Old East Slavic" differ from "Old Church Slavonic", anyway? What is the relation between the two? For some reason I thought this thread was about OCS and that was just a different name for it (although thinking further on that it doesn't make sense).

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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby Levike » 2014-03-27, 21:22

I thought Old Church Slavonic was Old Bulgarian
and that Old East Slavic was the ancestor of Russian, Ukrainian and Belorussian.

Isn't it so?
Hungarian (hu) Nem egy nap alatt épült Buda vára. _______German (de) Wo ein Wille ist, da ist auch ein Weg.
English (en) Hope for the best, prepare for the worst. __Spanish (es) No hay ceguera peor que no querer mirar.
Romanian (ro) Nu întinde arcul până nu este bine aşezată săgeata.

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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby sa wulfs » 2014-03-27, 22:39

Basically, yes. Old East Slavic is the ancestor of, well, the East Slavic languages, while Old Church Slavonic is part of the South Slavic family. However, the picture is complicated by the fact that Old Church Slavonic was hugely influential as a liturgical language throughout the whole Slavic-speaking area, so any given OES text is likely to show some OCS features.
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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby mōdgethanc » 2014-03-28, 16:53

Levente wrote:I thought Old Church Slavonic was Old Bulgarian
and that Old East Slavic was the ancestor of Russian, Ukrainian and Belorussian.

Isn't it so?
Makes sense. But like sa wulfs said, there would've been some OCS influence on it (which you still see in modern Russian).

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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby Quasus » 2014-03-29, 23:46

mōdgethanc wrote:b) <ě> is already used for the letter yat which was something like [jæ].


In Old Russian ѣ was closed [e] or the diphthong [ie]. It was open in Old Slavonic.

BTW, град is an Old Slavonic form. Its cognate in the `mature' Old Russian is городъ with pleophony, but by 1000 AD the pleophony had not fully developed, and the pronunciation could be like [gorədъ] (as for city names, think of Новгород).

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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby Mulder-21 » 2014-04-15, 20:55

Actually, OCS is considered separate from Old Bulgarian, and a sister language of the other South Slavic languages. OES is the parent language of not just Russian, but also Ukrainian and Belarusian.
Gløgt er gestsins eyga. (Føroyskt orðafelli)
Wise is the stranger's eye. (Faroese saying)
L'occhio dell'ospite è acuto. (Proverbio faroico)
Hosťovo oko je múdre. (Faerské uslovie)

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Quasus
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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby Quasus » 2014-05-02, 0:57

Mulder-21 wrote:OES is the parent language of not just Russian, but also Ukrainian and Belarusian.


Obviously. I don't know how recent and widespread the coinage OES is, I just followed the current Russian practice. Anyway, it seems to me logical, since the language of Rus, Роусь, was indeed роуськы.

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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby Ludwig Whitby » 2014-05-02, 8:20

sa wulfs wrote:Hi folks,

Does anybody here have a good knowledge of early Old East Slavic? I'm trying to do some research for a project and I've encountered some difficulties, the biggest one being that many Modern Russian speakers seem to believe their language hasn't really changed since then, minor spelling issues aside. For example, I'm finding conflicting information about the dropping of the yers, which my Russian-speaking pals insist wouldn't affect pronunciation, but I'm fairly confident in believing that, by the late 10th century, they wouldn't have been dropped yet (in an area roughly corresponding to what's now northern Ukraine or southern Belarus).

For example, consider a fictional settlement name Дубоград (Dubograd). Would the OES form be Дубоградъ (Dubogradŭ), with the yer being pronounced? Would the linking vowel between Дуб- and -град(ъ) be different in OES? For the name of the Dnieper, I think it should be Дънѣпръ (Dŭněprŭ), with all three vowels still being pronounced circa 1000 AD, at least in careful speech, aye?

If it turns out anyone can help me, I'll probably have plenty more questions. :P

Cheers!

If you have facebook check this out:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/oldeastslavic/

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Re: Old East Slavic

Postby sa wulfs » 2014-05-05, 10:24

Thanks, Ludwig! Unfortunately I don't speak any Slavic languages, East or otherwise.
Quasus wrote:Obviously. I don't know how recent and widespread the coinage OES is, I just followed the current Russian practice. Anyway, it seems to me logical, since the language of Rus, Роусь, was indeed роуськы.

I've seen people call it Old Rus'ian. :P
I don't care either way. Old East Slavic sounds more scientific and stuff, as it aligns well with West Slavic and South Slavic, but any controversy about this is mostly political and hence boring and absurd.
http://ungelicisus.blogspot.com
Hrōþabaírhts sa Wulfs | Hrōðbeorht se Wulf | Hróðbjartr Úlfrinn | Hruodperaht der Wolf | Hrôthberht thê Wulf


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