Indo-European Linguistics in the 21st Century (3) Optimizing the Laryngeal Theory: Testing the Models of Puhvel, Eichner and Melchert/Rix against Szemerényi’s Monolaryngealism

Jouna Olavi Pyysalo, Juha Antero Janhunen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Since both the orthodox (MØLLER, BENVENISTE, PUHVEL) and the revisionist (KURYŁOWICZ, EICHNER, MELCHERT/RIX, KORTLANDT) models of the laryngeal theory (LT) have failed to solve the problem of the IE vowels (PYYSALO & JANHUNEN 2018a, 2018b), revisions in the theory are necessary. A comparison of the models of PUHVEL, EICHNER, and MELCHERT-RIX with regard to the criterion of economy shows that, although they are mutually contradictory, each of them has contributed at least one correct solution absent in the other models. By combining these correct solutions into a single model we can arrive at what may be termed the “Optimized Laryngeal Theory” (OLT), which, then, can be tested against monolaryngealism, as formulated by SZEMERÉNYI.
Original languageEnglish
JournalProto-Indo-European Linguistics – Urindogermanische Sprachforschungen
Issue number1/2019
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jan 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fields of Science

  • 6121 Languages
  • Proto-Indo-European
  • Indo-European linguistics
  • comparative method
  • laryngeal theory
  • Historical linguistics
  • Indo-European languages

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