A study of cognates between Gyalrong languages and Old Chinese
Shuya Zhang (Institut National des langues et des civilisations orientales, Paris); Guillaume Jacques (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris); Yunfan Lai (Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, Jena)
Journal of Language Relationship, № 17/1-2, 2019 - p.73-92
Gyalrongic languages, a subgroup of the Burmo-Qiangic branch of the Sino-Tibetan family, are spoken in the Western Sichuan Province of China. They are polysynthetic languages, and present rich verbal morphology. Although they are not closely related to Chinese, they are of particular interest for Sino-Tibetan/Trans-Himalayan comparative linguistics with regards to their conservative phonology and morphology. Based on previous studies on Old Chinese phonology, combining with recent fieldwork data, this paper aims to show how Gyalrong languages could shed light on Old Chinese morphology and thus contribute to the Old Chinese reconstruction. It also proposes a list of possible cognates between Old Chinese, Gyalrong languages, indicating also Tibetan cognates when available.
Keywords: Gyalrong languages, Old Chinese language, etymological cognates, comparative morphology, historical reconstruction