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The Quest for the Origins of Vedic CultureThe Indo-Aryan Migration Debate$
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Edwin Bryant

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780195137774

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0195137779.001.0001

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Linguistic Paleontology

Linguistic Paleontology

(p.108) 6 Linguistic Paleontology
The Quest for the Origins of Vedic Culture

Edwin Bryant (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

An examination is made of various points of view on the location of the Indo-European homeland based on evidence from the method of linguistic paleontology. This is one of the most exploited disciplines used in the homeland quest, and one that is also fundamental in insisting that the Indo-Aryans had an origin external to the Indian subcontinent. Here, Indian scholars are found reconfiguring the same logic and method to arrive at very different conclusions from those of their Western counterparts. The two principal aspects of linguistic paleontology examined are terms for various Indo-European flora and fauna (including trees), and the term “ēkwos” for horse (along with references to the accompanying archaeological evidence). The chapter finishes by presenting criticisms of the linguistic palaeontology method.

Keywords:   evidence, Indian scholars, Indo-Aryan origins, Indo-European homeland, linguistic paleontology, methodology, Western scholars

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