Limited Grassmann’s Law in Latin
Following the lead of Walde 1906, Weiss 2011:156 posits the dissimilation of the first of two successive aspirates when the intervening syllable contained a liquid. The examples cited are:
*bhardheh2 ‘beard’ (cf. OCS brada, OE beard) > *bardhā >> barba not †farba.
*dhragheti ‘drags’ (cf. OE dragan) > *dragheti > trahit not †frahit
*ghladhros ‘smooth’ (cf. OE glæd ‘bright’, OHG glat ‘smooth’ < PGmc. *glada-) > *gladhros > glaber not †laber.
This talk will examine alternative explanations for this data, investigate the phonetic plausibility of the conditioning environment (why should the presence of a liquid favor dissimilation?) and, following the methodology of Weiss 2010, collect and analyze synoptically the evidence for the reflexes of biaspirate roots in Italic.
Greek and Latin Linguistics