4.3. Phrygian

4.3.1. Phrygian evolution

Phrygian is most closely related to Greek. Both share the following features:

·       Initial vocalisation of laryngeals (more consistent between each other than with Armenian).

·       Use of the thematic pronoun auto- ‘self’.

·       Imperative middle 3sg. ending.

·       Word-final *m *n.

·       Common lexicon, such as ánakt- ‘ruler’, and lāu̯āg(etā)- ‘leader of a lāu̯ó-’.

Known Old Phrygian features include (Ligorio and Lubotsky 2018):

·       Fate of stops unclear[xix]:

o   Aspirated stops become plain stops: *bh/dh/gh/gwh → *b/d/g/gw;

o   Plain stops become tenues (dubious): *b/d/g → *p/t/k;

o   Labiovelars become plain velars: *kw/gw → *k/g.

·       Limited palatalisation trends: cf. (d)zemelos ‘men (dat. pl.)’ < dhg(h)emelo-, cf. Gk. khthamalós, Lat. humilis, ‘low, humble’; demonstrative *se-/si- and *sa- probably from *ki-.  

·       Merge *ē, *ā a. No certain examples of *ī, *ū. Eventually, short and long vowels merged, and the New Phrygian period shows a vowel system without length opposition.

·       No clear example of diphthong *ou. There were at least two long diphthongs, ōi and āi.

·       Declension affected by vocalism: *tēr tar; *ēn an; *-on is raised to -un; *-eu̯--ts →*-evans → -evais, *-eu̯--tos → -evanos.

·       Reduction of word-final clusters: cf. bas <*bats, batan; ºvanak, dat. vanaktei; dakaren (<*dakarent); 3.sg. ending -es <*-est.

·       *s continues Graeco-Armenian trend to loss; it appears in word-final position and in clusters with a stop.

o   Development of geminates from *sK → **hKkK.

·       Syllabic nasals develop as *aN.

·       Old Phrygian nominal declension had at least four cases.

·       Preservation of relative and demonstrative pronoun (as anaphoric).

·       Verbal system marked for tense (present, perfect, aorist), voices (active, middle), and moods (indicative, imperative, optative, subjunctive).

·       Imperative ending 3sg. m. -do parallels Greek -sthō.

·       Unmarked word order seems to be SOV.

Based on the known Old Phrygian inscriptions (ca. 8th–4th c. BC), it may be assumed that Proto-Phrygian was spoken some time around the turn of the 2nd to 1st millennium BC. Its close relatedness to Greek puts their split from a common Graeco-Phrygian trunk necessarily earlier than the estimated Proto-Greek period.

4.3.2. Schleicher’s fable in Proto-Phrygian

The following is a tentative version of the fable in Proto-Phrygian, based on the scarce data available, assuming a close similarity with Proto-Greek.

ou̯is ekoi-ke

ou̯is as lanos ne es

ekois dedorke;

son garun ogun ogenan,

son meka borun,

son dzemelun ōku beronan.

ou̯is ekoihi eeuke:

kardā agnutoi moi,

anaran u̯idonei ekois akonan.”

ekoi eeukan: “kludi ou̯i!

kardā agnutoi anmi idonei,

anar, dampotis, oun lanun

autoi germun estran daket,

aini oun lanos ne esti.”

soi kluos ou̯is akrom buke.