Recent Posts

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 10
Outside of the box / Re: Croatian toponyms
« Last post by LinguistSkeptic on Today at 11:04:07 PM »
So, one thing should be clear by now: FlatAssembler is a liar. And what do you mean you didn't accept anything? You said his etymologies were reasonable.
Outside of the box / Re: Airplanes don't exist. (A parody of the conspiracy theorists)
« Last post by panini on September 22, 2017, 10:44:00 AM »
I have to disagree with the position that the parody is humorous. Where it falls flat is that it purports to be about conspiracy theorism, but is really about something totally different. Conspiracy theory is predicated on the idea that there are clusters of people out there secretly plotting and working together to accomplish some (evil) end. Instead, what you've produced is a parody of lousy reasoning from someone who has a lousy epistemology, heavy on rationalism and light on direct observation. It is a well-known fact that people generally parrot broad generalizations that they picked up somewhere, and nobody bothers to go back to the primary sources. In so doing, stuff gets lost in the translation.

I don't know what you think a linguistic analog to the above chain of "reasoning" would be.

Outside of the box / Re: Croatian toponyms
« Last post by Daniel on September 22, 2017, 08:10:53 AM »
So, why does FlatAssembler suppose that the PIE word "yos" existed and meant "spring"?
It's a hypothesis. There are dictionaries of proposed Indo-European etymologies. Wiktionary has a number of entries and that's quick to access. There are other more comprehensive published sources.
FlatAssembler, that is a reasonable question: what is your source for 'yos'?
I'm not seeing it on a quick search. But my area of expertise/interest in this is not about lexical items in PIE. I'm not too familiar with all of the proposed roots. I assume you have a source for it, and you might be able to explain this to LinguistSkeptic.

And why do you accept that?
I haven't "accepted" anything. I've just given advice about methodology.


The alternative you seem to be proposing (by implication) is that we assume everything is wrong. If we do that, then there's very little to try to understand. Science is full of hypotheses, many of which are built on other hypotheses.

You wrote elsewhere that you don't like assuming things (e.g., hypotheses) as facts. That's fine. But there's also a big difference between that and actively rejecting everything. A reasonable approach in science is making contingent predictions (layered hypotheses). It's possible that the foundations of an argument are false, in which case the secondary argument is also false. That's how science works. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't do science. That means that, yes, if "yos" isn't a relevant root for whatever reason, the hypothesis proposed here is also incorrect. But by exploring these possibilities we may learn something.

What is your goal in this conversation? Do you want to learn more about hypotheses? Or do you want to just keep suggesting that any given hypothesis might be wrong? If so, you're correct. And your point has been made. And you should probably avoid the whole field of Historical Linguistics, because it's full of this stuff. That doesn't mean we can't learn anything, but apparently you don't like uncertainty, and that's most of what there is. On the other hand, there are different levels of uncertainty, and if you have trouble believing Latin was ever a spoken language, then basically all hope is lost for you finding less documented areas of Historical Linguistics (e.g., most of it) to be insightful. In that case, I am having trouble figuring out why you're here. I'm attempting to treat your questions as genuine questions, but if your position is simply that you're skeptical, then why should I try to convince you otherwise? Am I making any progress? If not, I don't mind if you don't agree with me, but why are we still discussing it? Should we continue?
Outside of the box / Re: Croatian toponyms
« Last post by LinguistSkeptic on September 22, 2017, 07:44:22 AM »
So, why does FlatAssembler suppose that the PIE word "yos" existed and meant "spring"? And why do you accept that?
Linguist's Lounge / Re: Introduction Thread
« Last post by LinguistSkeptic on September 22, 2017, 07:42:14 AM »
So, as some of you already know, I am interested in linguistics, but I don't like it when controversial things are stated as fact.
How can you put all the conspiracy theorists in the same box? Even if I am disagreeing with the mainstream linguistics, that's a lot less wrong than disagreeing with the mainstream fluid dynamics, because linguistics is a lot softer science than physics is. You guys just aren't reasonable and nothing can change your mind.

Your parody is humorous, but misses the point almost completely.
Historical Linguistics / Re: Was Latin ever a spoken language?
« Last post by Daniel on September 21, 2017, 11:19:45 PM »
So, where is that evidence?
I'm not going to devote any substantial amount of time to proving that Latin exists. It's an absurd request.

But here's one example:

As for knowing that Latin was a spoken language, I don't have anything in mind at the moment, but I'm also not an expert on Roman grammarians. However, Aristotle, Plato and other ancient Greek philosophers wrote often about the pronunciation of words. Plato's Cratylus is a specific example that discusses whether sounds have an inherent meaning (a 'correct' meaning) or if they are (in modern terms) arbitrary. Does "dog" mean dog only by convention, or inherently in its sound? (Of course he referred to the ancient Greek words.) Latin grammarians of course made similar comments about pronunciation.

Also, you are ignoring the counter-evidence I've presented: the descriptions we have about Latin grammar are so inconsistant that it appears to be impossible to make a simple statement such as "Heroes are never forgotten." in Latin.
That isn't evidence of anything. Whether or not I can translate a sentence into German does not prove (or disprove) that German exists. That is entirely irrelevant.

Aside from skepticism, there is no reason whatsoever to reject Latin as having existed or been spoken. There are historical accounts of it. Consider any Roman play that was performed and understood. And from the perspective of linguistics, although the situation is complicated, it is clear that Spanish, French, Italian, Romanian, etc., came from some shared ancestor. (That argument applies to why we know some ancestor of many European languages, which we now refer to as Proto-Indo-European, also existed.)

Some variety of Latin we can refer to as Vulgar Latin existed and was spoken in Rome. Questioning that is just silly. Asking exactly what Vulgar Latin was like is a very good academic question, one that many articles and books have been written about, and a continued topic of interest for future research as well. You can read about it here:

I'm ready to be done debating this, especially before the conversation devolves further. I've already wasted enough time trying to convince you that water is wet. Believe what you wish.


FlatAssembler, please don't extend or incite the argument more.
Outside of the box / Re: Croatian toponyms
« Last post by Daniel on September 21, 2017, 11:09:57 PM »
Proto-Indo-European is a widely accepted linguistic hypothesis (by the vast majority of linguists, who know something about the subject). You can read about it here:

There's nothing more to discuss on the topic, unless you have questions about it.
Outside of the box / Re: Croatian toponyms
« Last post by FlatAssembler on September 21, 2017, 08:45:33 PM »
Just because you have no idea how it works doesn't mean it doesn't work at all. Get educated, and then return to this forum. Otherwise, THIS is how you sound now:'s-lounge/airplanes-don't-exist-(a-parody-of-the-conspiracy-theorists)/
Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 10