Where Was Phrygia How to Say Phrygia King of Phrygia Thracian Alphabet Where Is Phrygia Located Phrygia in the Bible Phrygia Map The Study of Ancient Languages
| Phrygian_language | Dacian_language | Ancient_Macedonian_language | Thraco-Phrygian | Phrygians | Phrygian_alphabet | Phrygian | Indo-European_languages | Phrygian_empire | Greek_language | Mysian_language | Graeco-Aryan_language | Ancient_Greek_language | Armenian_language | Proto-Indo-European_language | Classification_of_Thracian | Sabazios | Brygian_language | Mysia | Vladimir_Orel |
|Region||Central Asia Minor|
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Phrygian is attested by two corpora, one from around 800 BCE and later (Paleo-Phrygian), and then after a period of several centuries from around the beginning of the Common Era (Neo-Phrygian). The Paleo-Phrygian corpus is further divided (geographically) into inscriptions of Midas (city) (M, W), Gordion, Central (C), Bithynia (B), Pteria (P), Tyana (T), Daskyleion (Dask), Bayindir (Bay), and "various" (Dd, documents divers). The Mysian inscriptions seem to be in a separate dialect (in an alphabet with an additional letter, "Mysian-s").
The last mentions of the language date to the 5th century CE and it was likely extinct by the 7th century CE.
Paleo-Phrygian used a Phoenician-derived script (its ties with Greek are debated), while Neo-Phrygian used the Greek script.
Its structure, what can be recovered from it, was typically Indo-European, with nouns declined for case (at least four), gender (three) and number (singular and plural), while the verbs are conjugated for tense, voice, mood, person and number. No single word is attested in all its inflectional forms.
Phrygian seems to exhibit an augment, like Greek, Indo-Iranian and Armenian, c.f. eberet, probably corresponding to PIE (Proto-Indian-European) *e-bher-e-t (Greek ephere with loss of the final t, Sanskrit ábharat), although comparison to examples like ios ... addaket 'who does ... to', which is not a past tense form (perhaps subjunctive), shows that -et may be from the PIE primary ending *-eti.
|Stop||p b||t d||k ɡ|
It has long been claimed that Phrygian exhibits a Lautverschiebung of stop consonants, similar to Grimm's Law in Germanic and, more to the point, sound laws found in Proto-Armenian, I.e. voicing of PIE aspirates, devoicing of PIE voiced stops and aspiration of voiceless stops. This hypothesis has been rejected by Lejeune (1979) and Brixhe (1984).
The hypothesis had been considered defunct throughout the 1980s and 1990s, but has been revived in the 2000s, with Woodhouse (2006) and Lubotsky (2004) arguing for evidence for at least partial shift of obstruent series, i.e. voicing of PIE aspirates (*bh > b) and devoicing of PIE voiced stops (*d > t).
The affricates ts and dz developed from velars before front vowels.
Phrygian is attested fragmentarily, known only from a comparatively small corpus of inscriptions. A few hundred Phrygian words are attested; however, the meaning and etymologies of many of these remain unknown.
A famous Phrygian word is bekos, meaning "bread". According to Herodotus (Histories 2.2) Pharaoh Psammetichus I wanted to determine the oldest nation and establish the world's original language. For this purpose, he ordered two children to be reared by a shepherd, forbidding him to let them hear a single word, and charging him to report the children's first utterance. After two years, the shepherd reported that on entering their chamber, the children came up to him, extending their hands, calling bekos. Upon enquiry, the pharaoh discovered that this was the Phrygian word for "wheat bread", after which the Egyptians conceded that the Phrygian nation was older than theirs. The word bekos is also attested several times in Palaeo-Phrygian inscriptions on funerary stelae. It may be cognate to the English bake (PIE *bheHg-). Hittite, Luwian (both also had an impact on Phrygian morphology), Galatian and Greek (which also exhibits a high amount of isoglosses with Phrygian) all had an impact on Phrygian vocabulary.
The Greek theonym Zeus appears in Phrygian with the stem Ti- (Genitive Tios = Greek Dios, from earlier *Diwos; the nominative is unattested); perhaps with the general meaning "god, deity". Possibly, tiveya is "goddess". The shift of *d to t in Phrygian and the loss of *w before o appears to be regular. Stephanus Byzantius records that according to Demosthenes, Zeus was known as Tios in Bithynia.
Another possible theonym is bago-, attested as the accusative singular bag̣un in G-136. Lejeune identified the term as *bhagom, in the meaning "a gift, dedication" (PIE *bhag- "to apportion, give a share"). But Hesychius of Alexandria mentions a Bagaios, Phrygian Zeus (Βαγαῖος Ζεὺς Φρύγιος) and interprets the name as δοτῆρ ἑάων, "giver of good things".