Written in 1878, while the author was a twenty-year-old student in Berlin, Saussure's only full-length work proposed the existence of two additional sonant coefficients in the Indo-European parent language. Applying the methods of comparison and internal reconstruction to Proto-Indo-European, Saussure argued that the long vowels had developed from a short vowel plus a sonant coefficient. A hypothesis far ahead of its time, his proposal was not confirmed until 1927 when a consonantal phoneme etymologically derived from Saussure's A was discovered in newly deciphered Hittite, the oldest attested Indo-European language. Not only is the Mémoire a dramatic demonstration of the method of internal reconstruction, but it also paved the way for further developments in historical phonology including laryngeal theory, and may have stimulated Saussure's later development of structuralism. This reissue includes, as an appendix, Antoine Meillet's 1913 obituary of Saussure.
12th Sep 2013 by RainerKimmig
There is no need to say anything about Saussure’s early stroke of genius, and Cambridge University Press was well advised to make the book accesible again in a quality reprint. But the cover see picture above suggests that the volume also includes the philological study De l’emploi du génitif absolu en Sanskrit which I found missing in the copy I got from amazon. For those who work in the field this amounts almost to cheating possible buyers. Therefore: 5 points for Saussure, 0 for the academic publisher who, in times taking these things more serious, would have risked his reputation by such business practices.See all reviews
26th Nov 2014 by
Apologies for this mistake on the cover, which has been rectified. The other book is now available separately.
01st Mar 2015 by ManfredOstrowski
This work had great impact on historical Indo-European linguistics, so we are happy to see it accessible again for purchase.
Review was not posted due to profanity×
- Date Published: November 2009
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9781108006590
- length: 326 pages
- dimensions: 216 x 140 x 19 mm
- weight: 0.42kg
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
Revue des différents opinions émises sur le système des a
1. Les liquides et nasales sonantes
2. Le phonème A dans les langues européennes
3. Les deux o gréco-italiennes
4. Indices de la pluralité des a dans la langue mère indo-européenne
5. Role grammatical des différentes espèces d'a
6. De différents phénomènes relatifs aux sonantes i, u, r, n, m
Registre des mots grecs.
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