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Review of  Early Contacts between Uralic and Indo-European: Linguistic and Archaeological Considerations

Reviewer: 'John Hammink' ['John Hammink'] John Hammink
Book Title: Early Contacts between Uralic and Indo-European: Linguistic and Archaeological Considerations
Book Author: Christian Carpelan Asko Parpola Petteri Koskikallio
Publisher: Finno-Ugrian Society
Linguistic Field(s): Historical Linguistics
Language Family(ies): Uralic
Book Announcement: 14.934

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Date: Fri, 28 Mar 2003 10:59:14 +0200
From: John Hammink <>
Subject: Early Contacts between Uralic and Indo-European: Linguistic and Archeological Considerations

Carpelan, Christian, Asko Parpola and Petteri Koskikalio, ed. (2002)
Early Contacts between Uralic and Indo-European: Linguistic and
Archeological Considerations, Finno-Ugrian Society.

John Hammink, F-Secure Corporation

Over the years, there has been much speculation about the
early identity and roots of the Uralic languages, and
indeed, in recent years there seems to be a renewed
interest in the topic. In fact, since the 1980's,
linguists have begun to make concessions to archeologists,
breaching an intellectual gulf that was considered pretty
daunting up until that point, particularly due to
differences in methods of study and dating. In addition, a
well-known culture of academic cliquishness has always
endured (as in practically every academic field) which
lends credence to some ideas over others, while not
necessarily putting either into the correct perspective.

But, particularly in Finland, such topics have seen great
national interest since the early 19th century, beginning
with Castren and continuing up to recent times with
conferences and seminars on Finno-Ugric enthnohistory. One
such meeting was the 3 day symposium on "Contacts between
Indo-European and Uralic speakers in the Neolithic,
Eneolithic and Bronze Age in the light of linguistic and
archeological evidence", which was held at Tvärminne
Research Station at the University of Helsinki in January,
1999. At that conference, the 18 papers and 4 abstracts
that comprise this book were presented.

The first paper, "Persistent Identity and Indo-European
Archaeology in the Western Steppes", presented by David W.
Anthony, deals with the problem of reconciling what could
be seen as societal polymorphism with the notion that PIE
language would appear to be linked to specific tombs and
settlements. Just as "there is no necessary relationship
between the way people speak and the way they make pots or
stone tools" there is a reluctance among western
archaeologists to affiliate linguistic and archaeological
cultures. In the larger scheme, this article seems to set
the scene for things to come, and so it appears in the
right place at the beginning of the volume.

The author argues that there should be a middle ground in
the debate, that, in fact, stable ethno-linguistic (pre-
state) frontiers were possible, and he cites the Northern
Iroquois as an example. One practical example also cited
was the western boundary of the Pontic-Caspian region,
which, in several stages, remained a stable frontier for
several millennia. The other Pontic-Caspian frontiers were
discussed as well.

Christian Carpelan outlines a scenario for the emergence of
Uralic/Finno-Ugric speaking groups in "Late Paleolithic and
Mesolithic Settlement of the European North Possible
Linguistic Implications." To accomplish this he describes
"an archaeological culture as a sphere of internal
communication probably based on a common identity". In his
scenario, the European population north of the Alps
retreated to the southeast and southwest due to the Last
Glacial Maximum (LGM) which has been dated around 18000 BP
(BP = radiocarbon years before AD 1950) or approximately
22000 calBC. This created an Eastern and a Western Block.

The Western Block represented (among others) the
Magdalenian cultures, which repopulated the depopulated
territories starting around 14500BP /15400 calBC; and the
aptly-named Hamburg culture, which appears to be an
extension of the Magdalenian cultures. Starting from 13200
BP / 13900 calBC, the Hamburg culture spread over an area
including what is nowadays northern Germany, Poland,
Southern Sweden and Britain and part of the North Sea,
which was then dry land.

The Eastern Block represented much of the widespread
Gravettian techno complex (which was displaced in Southern
France by the Magdalenian cultures). Most of the
discussion here seems to center on place rather than
specific cultures, although it is suggested later that
"people from the west infiltrated the [Eastern Block]
region, which was already inhabited by groups representing
the Eastern Block."

The author continues to trace the transition to the
Mesolithic period through the initial colonization of the
Scandia Peninsula around 10300 7150 BP / 10100 6000 calBC.
When discussing the initial colonization of the Baltic,
Northern Russia and Fennoscandia, the author discredits
Bryosov's scenario that "the northern part of Russia was
initially colonized from the East." The article goes on to
summarize events in Eastern Fennoscandia (8050 2400 BP /
7000 500 CalBC). It would appear that the Volga-Oka area
eventually became a sort of cultural boiling pot, which
presumably also carried linguistic and genetic influence.
Of the 7 cultural horizons, the Lyalovo or Pitted Ware was
highlighted, as it seems to be the culture that, evolving
to Combed Ware 2, expanded to a significantly large area,
encompassing Sweden, the Gulf of Bothnia, the White Sea and
extending eastward to the Urals. Of course, there were
several cultures that appear to have intersected with it,
putting their own unique stamp on things. The article
contains short sections on Craniometry and Genetics as well
as Languages. The latter would appear to be a more
speculative take on Uralic roots. The author doesn't
appear to propose a specific geographical locale for the
Uralic origins, but rather proposes only that the language
has started from the Eastern Block settlers. It would
appear unlikely that Ahrensbergian influence in western
Russia at the end of the Paleolithic would have sparked
Uralic development, although it may have left substrate

Christian Carpelan and Asko Parpola continue the linguistic
line of reasoning with "Emergence, Contacts and Dispersal
of PIE, PU, and PA in Archaeological Perspective." "When
and where were Proto-Indo-European (PIE), Proto-Uralic
(PU), and Proto-Aryan (PA) spoken? And when and where did
they split into their main branches?" While archeological
findings can be mapped and dated, as no written remains
exist, any correlation with definite languages is
problematic. The article begins by discussing problems in
distribution with radiocarbon dating when Europe (south of
54 degrees) as compared to the Volga-Oka confluence up to
the Urals do not contain a proportionate amount of
published dates, which appears to make checking either
extremely laborious or practically impossible. The
dispersal of late PIE is discussed. As all Indo-European
languages possess inherited vocabulary related to wheeled
transport and the PIE daughter languages have not borrowed
them from one another after the dispersal, one can assume
that PIE speakers knew and used wheeled vehicles. As
wheeled transport was first invented sometime during the
second quarter or middle of the fourth millennium BC, and
dispersed over the next two centuries or so, then the
dispersal of PIE cannot have taken place much earlier than
3500 calBC. The article also discusses PIE in relation to
the following branches: Tocharian, Anatolian, and Proto-
Northwest-Indo-European. The Pit Grave culture is
considered as a central group for late PIE, while the
Khvalynsk culture is considered to possibly possess the
language that was the immediate predecessor of early PIE.

Early Indo-European Loanwords in Uralic languages are also
considered, and some existing theories are disputed. Of
notable mention here is Juha Janhunen's reluctance to
accept PIE loanwords into PU because of his placement of
the PU homeland in central Siberia. Because this idea has
no basis in the archaeological record, the authors dispute
it. Also considered here are the Uralic language family
and its main branches. When discussing the disintegration
of PU, the authors concede that all Finno-Ugric languages
"appear to have been originally spoken in the forest area
west of the Ural mountains. Thus the homeland of the
Finno-Ugric protolanguage has been considered to be in one
of three more or less adjacent or overlapping regions: 1)
The area of the mid Volga; 2) The area between the Volga,
Kama, Pechora and the Urals, and 3) The entire region
between the Baltic sea and the Urals. Curiously, the
Volga-Oka interfluve is again cited here as a region that
"continuously created both cultural and demographic
surplus" and the pottery styles produced here eventually
appear to have made their way to Fennoscandia. But
temporally speaking, the Lyalovo culture represented by
Pitted Ware (c. 5000-3650 calBC) is seen as a better
candidate for PU. The Lyalovo culture sprung from the
upper Volga region and spread to the Onega region of
Russian Karelia. Their Pitted Ware influence was felt all
the way down south to the forest steppe between the Dnepr
and Don. Lyalovo culture seems to have extended barely as
far the Kama basin but not into it. As such, there seems
to be no possibility of Samoyedic splitting off to Siberia,
but there is ample evidence that this happened later. The
article also discusses the corded ware cultures as a basis
for northwest Indo-European loanwords. The Balanovo and
Fat'yanovo cultures expanded eastward into the Volga-Oka
interfluve. It is reasoned that the oldest Baltic-
loanwords in Proto-Finnic came with the late Neolithic
Kiukainen culture (c. 2300-1600 calBC).

The interesting high-water mark of this article appears in
the chapter called "The early Aryan Loanwords for 'Honey'
and 'Bee'" In it, the authors assert that it is
"generally accepted that Proto-Finno-Ugric (PFU) *mete
'honey' (distributed in Finnic, Saami, Mordvin, Udmurt,
Komi, and Hungarian) is borrowed from PIE=Pre-Proto-Aryan
(PA) *medhu- (which became *madhu- in Proto-Aryan)." It is
also probable that "'bee' as a compound meaning 'honey-
collector' was borrowed into PFU before the PA sound
change *e > a took place." Beeswax is discussed in a
following section as "A new Indo-Aryan Etymology for a
Volga-Permic word." Early Indo-European and Aryan
Loanwords are also found in Proto-Samoyedic (PS), for
example, Northern Samoyedic *jäe 'meal, flour' is related
PA *yeva < PIE *yewo. Finally, the authors present a
summary of their article.

H. P. Francfort's "The Archeology of Protohistoric Central
Asia and the Problems of Identifying Indo-European and
Uralic-Speaking populations" addresses the archaeological
identification of linguistic groups in Central Asia in the
Bronze Age. The author presents two cases that represent
the problems of
1. tagging linguistic groups by using available archeological
data; and
2. the lack of any material representing non-Indo-European
speaking populations.

The civilizations studied are the Oxus Civilization and the
Afanasevo/Okunevo sequence. The Oxus Civilization existed
between ca 2500 and 1500 b.c. in the area that included
present-day Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, southern Uzbekistan,
Tajikistan and Eastern Iran. The Indian, Iranian and steppe
connections are considered, along with other ethnolinguistic
attributes. Finally, iconography and symbolic systems are
considered as some evidence that points to Non-Indo-European

The Afans'evo-Okunevo Complex/Sequence is considered in the
context of its territory and chronological sequence. The
Afanas'evo culture, dating from 3rd millennium, "was
widespread in western Mongolia, northern Xingjian, southern
Siberia, eastern and central Kazakhstan, with connections
or extensions in Tajikistan and the Aral area." They were
herdsmen and hunter-gatherers, they buried their dead in
conic or rectangular enclosures, typically in a supine
position, not unlike their Yamnaya counterparts in the
European steppes. As with the Oxus Civilization, the
article considers time-space location. Also discussed are
iconography and symbolic systems, again pointing to non-
Indo-European worlds, possibly either Uralic or Altaic.
The article contains several interesting drawings: In one:
an Okunevo masked figure is shown; others show tomb slabs;
yet others depict Okunevo/Afanas'evo masks, monsters and

Kaisa Hakkinen's paper "Prehistoric Finno-Ugric Culture in
the Light of Historical Lexicography" examines vocabulary
elements representative of "the oldest lexical stratum
common to the Uralic languages, whether originally
indigenous or borrowed." Apparently much data is derived
from hunting cultures, for example terms for hunting and
fishing equipment and game animals. Much less derived from
terms relating to agriculture, which apparently have a
fairly narrow geographical distribution.

Firstly, the article defines the age of available lexical
material. Oldest Finno-Ugric written documentation dates
only from the middle ages, so a comparative lexicological
study of related languages is necessary. Once can assume a
word to be of early origin and indigenous if the words are
restricted to Finno-Ugric languages yet have a wide
distribution. Likewise, if a word appears in other
languages, it may be, in fact a loan. Lastly, words
restricted to Finno-Ugric languages, but with a narrow
distribution, can be assumed to be fairly new.

Next, the article considers the oldest common lexical
stratum of the Uralic languages. Otto Donner's 1882 study
of the common cultural stock of Finns and Mordvinians is
considered the pioneering work here. Also mentioned here
is Björn Collinder's 'Fenno-Ugric Vocabulary', from 1955,
as a source of study of the oldest common Uralic lexicon.
In the following section, the lexical domains of the oldest
common vocabulary are discussed. These include time,
sensations, flora and fauna, trade and transport, quality
notions, nature, hunting and fishing, processes and states,
building and construction, nourishment, body parts, speech
and thought, family, space and time relations, pronouns,
and other miscellaneous items. The items are quantified,
first in total; secondly in Uralic, thirdly in Finno-Ugric,
and lastly in Finnish itself. Interestingly enough, Uralic
languages dominate in pronominals and family relationship
terms; while Finno-Ugric seems to record more words overall
than Uralic. Lastly, before an appendix, the article
evaluates distribution, and thus, certainty of etymology of
the word items.

In his article, Eugene Helimski outlines "Early Indo-Uralic
Linguistic Relationships: Real Kinship and Imagined
Contacts". He begins with the following premise: "there
may be many riddles but no wonders in linguistic
prehistory." Or, in other words, "all too often, the
early prehistory of languages is viewed as a terra
incognita with its own unknown rules (which are therefore
invented by some scholars freely and with vivid
imagination). While on one hand stating that early
linguistic relationships can be studied with the same
relevance and methodology that historical linguistic treats
more recent events, linguists can only be used in the same
way in this context if
1. Human language underwent no fundamental changes since
Upper Paleolithic/Mesolithic times;
2. Language prior to these eras possessed structural types
which lay within the same typological limits as in the
contemporary world;
3. Language, prior to these eras, evolved similarly as those
attested in the contemporary world.

That said, the author begins by outlining some of the types
of language kinship. The first discussed (and most common
type) is direct kinship determined by divergent evolution.
In this scenario, one uniform language spoken on a small
territory spreads (due to historical circumstances) "far
beyond the original territory". Over time, the distributed
languages become dialectically and sociolectically
distinguished, until distinct states are formed.
Eventually each regional variant undergoes its own distinct
and independent evolution. The most obvious example of
this is the pre-classical Latin of Latium (which evolved to
French, Italian, Romanian, Portuguese etc.). Other
language families are mentioned here, too (Slavic => Common
Slavic, Aver/Slavic, eventual rise of Polish, Russian,
Bulgarian), also Mongolic, Permic, Germanic, Indo-Aryan,
Bantu, Samoyedic, Turkic, Polynesian, etc. In all of the
above cases, while accompanying circumstances (e.g.
substratum, koine, secondary interaction) are dissimilar
between each case, "they do not introduce any major changes
into the picture of kinship".

Another type of language kinship is lateral kinship,
characterized by relexification and typical of "mixed"
languages. This is generally a sociolinguistic phenomenon
where speakers of a source need or want to speak a target
language, but "being adults grown up with another language"
are unable to handle the target grammar. So instead, they
simply repopulate their source grammatical system with the
target language's words. Some cases are Anglo-Romany, Ma'a
or Mbugu. A more complex form does all of the above plus
adds some simpler grammatical elements from the target as
well (Copper Island Aleut). Another form of lateral
kinship happens when the lexicon of the target is
superimposed on a synthetic, simplified version of the
source language grammar (like with most pidgins and
creoles). These processes "produce only new languages in
which grammar and vocabulary are of different origin".
They also produce only one "mixed" language (as opposed to
a new language family). Most, importantly, these languages
typically do not evolve and are short lived. I would also
add (feel free to prove me wrong) that these languages are
typically also spoken in situations where interaction
between speakers of the target and source languages are
necessary; they are not "native" languages (or mother
tongues) as such.

So by applying simple inductive reasoning, it is common
enough to reach the conclusion that PIE and PU share direct
kinship. For example, Kaisa Häkkinen's paper demonstrates
"the direct relationship between the stability of words
(stems) and their occurrence in the common vocabulary of
several Eurasian language families." One group of 18
items demonstrated "100% etymological certainty", while a
second group of 23 items demonstrated 90% etymological
certainty,. meaning that "their counterparts were missing
or dubious" in only 10% of the sampled languages.

Thus, the author considers a lateral kinship between PIE
and PU unlikely. First, there are broad and frequent
occurrence of both vocabulary cognates and grammatical
structures across all the languages. Second, "nothing in
the linguistic structures of PIE or PU implies a 'mixed'
past. Lastly, the author considers the statistical
rarities of a lateral kinship. The author neither accepts
or dismisses the Indo-Uralic (Nostratic) kinship in this
article. There is a subjective need for a proof at some
level, but simply a lack of comparable data. The rest of
article is devoted to rejecting alternative treatments of
PIE/PU kinship.

In "Indo-Uralic and Ural-Altaic: on the Diachronic
Implications of Areal Typology", Juha Janhunen
attempts to locate the prehistorical homeland of Uralic,
Indo-European, and Altaic by studying typological
relationships among regional languages. In the first
section, he reviews the Indo-Uralic typological
discrepancy. The most obvious difference between the two
is phonology. PIE, for example, may have had from 1-5
vowel sounds, and close to 30 consonants, while PU seems to
have many more vowel sounds (around 8) while much fewer
consonants (probably less than 17). Morphologically, the
languages actually seem to share a number of similarities,
but differences include the fact the PIE employed
affixation and flexion (including Ablaut), while Uralic
used only a sort of mechanical suffixation (no prefixation
or infixation). Syntactically, the data available would
seem to remain relatively inconclusive, with SOV word order
prominent in both PU and PIE, while PIE also seems to show
some use of SVO.

The Ural-Altaic Typological Parallelism is also discussed.
A reference is made to the Nostratic framework in which
this work is carried out. The Altaic languages are divided
into two groups (both of which appear typologically similar
to Uralic). Again, phonology, morphology, and syntax are

Uralic is then viewed in the Eurasian context. The
available data from Indo-European, Semitic, and Caucasian
parallels seems to suggest that PIE originates from an area
which includes Anatolia, Mesopotamia, and the Caucasus.
However, archaeology puts it in a slightly different area,
the Pontic steppes, north of the Black sea. It is more
difficult to locate the original geographic center of the
Ural-Altaic complex. The author suggests that around 2000
BP, all "currently known Altaic entities were located in
the northern part of the Far East" that is, the region
encompassing what is now Mongolia, Manchuria, and Korea.
However there were already, by this time branches including
those in the Yenisei-Baikal region going all the west to
the Baltic Sea (Finnic and Saami). Lastly, the author
proposes a framework for future study.

In his article, Petri Kallio raises the question:
"Phonetic Uralisms in Indo-European?" He deals with those
features in IE languages which may attest to Uralic
influence. The languages considered here are Proto-Balto-
Slavic (PBS), Proto-Germanic(PG), Proto-Indo-Iranian (PII)
and Proto-Tocharian (PT). The author begins with the idea
of tracing phonetic Uralisms to another language, e.g. as a
Finn speaks English, and extends the analogy that indeed,
"it may be possible to hear pronunciation errors made by
ancient Uralians thousands of years ago."

The article contains a number of tables. The first of such
shows phoneme substitutions in late PIE loanwords in
PU/PFU/PFP. It is easy to note from this that sound
shifting between IE and Uralic was, in itself, quite
minimal, but taken as a whole, could add up to significant
differences between source and loanwords. Also, it's noted
that "Late PIE stops had three manners of articulations and
5 places of articulation; where as PU stops had one manner
of articulation and three places of articulation." This
seems to support Janhunen's assertion about number of
consonants in PIE as opposed to PU, but an exact
mathematical correlation cannot be determined from this.

The second table lists PIE and Uralic/Finno Ugric Phonemes.
One can easily see from this that PIE simply does contain
many more consonants and fewer vowels than PU. The third
table lists Tocharian and PU phonemes. One interesting
point mentioned here is the fact that places of
articulation of affricates are identical between PII and
PFU. The author follows with an in-depth discussion of the
four languages mentioned earlier.

Earliest Indo-European Loanwords in Uralic/Finno-Ugric are
on the docket in Jorma Koivulehto's "The Earliest Contacts
between Indo-European and Uralic Speakers in the Light of
Lexical Loans." In the first section, the author asserts
1. IE loanwords in Uralic are distributed across a wide area;
2. Reconstruction suggests that the words were borrowed
into Uralic at a proto-stage for both languages;
3. "in most cases the reflexes of the PU counterpart in
later Uralic daughter languages do not show any internal
irregularities which would point to borrowings transmitted
from one secondary Uralic dialect/language to another".

Thus, it is probable that earliest loan words into Uralic
may have been adopted when the speech area of Uralic did
not exceed an area of 1,000,000 square kilometers. The
author then continues with examples of the actual
loanwords. Interestingly, one word, which is listed, is
'vesi', or 'water' in Finnish, which may or may not have
been borrowed. It would seem to have been asserted either
way, although the author's etymology of the word is pretty

The subsequent sections are titled: "Indo-European
Loanwords in westerly Finno-Ugric"; "Early Contacts with
Pre-Aryan and Early Proto Aryan"; and "A Proto-Iranian
Feature: Reflex of an Early Depalatalization of the
Common-Aryan Palatal Affricates." The article concludes by
making several assertions about the cultures and
chronologies where the borrowings and interactions
occurred. The author refers to several colleagues'
articles, which also appear in the volume.

In "The Neolithic Period of North-Western Siberia: The
Question of Southern Connections", L. L. Kosinskaya
investigates the age-old question of southern connections
to North-Western Siberia, evident, for example, in the
similarities of regional pottery styles from more or less
the same time periods. Data is compared, mostly
archeological, and the locations of some of the early
cultures in this area are pinpointed. Lastly,
ethnolinguistic implications are considered.

In her article, E. E. Kuz'mina elaborates on these ideas,
with focus on mythological as well as archeological data.
"Contacts between Finno-Ugric and Indo-Iranian speakers in
the light of archeological, linguistic, and mythological
data" begins with a discussion of Finno-Ugric languages and
known branches. Secondly, linguistics and archeology are
discussed in the light of Indo-Iranian borrowings (not
surprisingly related to economic production, social
relations and religious beliefs). Finally, some
mythological comparisons are drawn between Indo-Aryan/Indo-
Iranian and some Finno-Ugric beliefs. Of notable mention
are the "horse-breeding together with mythical ideas and
rituals comparable to the Indian asvamedha" adopted by many
Uralic peoples.

Alexander Lubotsky's article is titled "The Indo-Iranian
Substratum," and in it, he discusses the study of loanwords
as a means of "determining prehistoric cultural contacts
and migrations", particularly as they apply to loanwords of
Proto-Indo-Iranian, "before it split into two branches."
Apparently PII maintained basically one dialect, up to the
time the Indo-Aryans crossed the mountains and lost contact
with their roots. Mayrhofer's EWA corpus is used as a base
for the study. In the second to last section parallels
are drawn between the loanword evidence and archeological
evidence. This places the Indo-Iranians as having moved
from the Eurasian steppes (Pit-Grave culture 3500-2500
BCE), first to the lower Volga (Pottapovo culture 2500-1900
BCE) and finally to central Asia (Andronovo culture, after
2200 BCE). Lastly, one section discusses the contact
between Uralic and Indo-Iranian speakers. An appendix at
the end of the article lists Indo-Iranian isolates.

In the most controversial and adversarial paper in the
whole collection, Janos Makkay addresses the problem of
"The Earliest Proto-Indo-European-Proto-Uralic Contacts:
An Upper Paleolithic Model". He starts out by examining
the problem of surplus scientific production, and the
asyncronicity between available archaeological vs.
linguistic research and methodology. Fortunately, with the
passing of time, the problem appears to be getting better,
or at least more, treatment. The author is able to find
much contradicting and inconsistent evidence in the other
author's work in the volume. He also historically surveys
different prevailing theories. Based on these, he is able
to provide evidence for quite a variation of early Uralic
homelands, each of which he discredits in turn. One
solution he seems to be content with is the Paleolithic
model of the late Miklos Gabori presented at the nice
congress in 1976. In this theory, the idea that the first
Eastern Baltic population was PU/PFU speaking runs into
problems, because there were already presumably PIE
speakers residing there as early as Paleolithic times.
"According to this model, the separation of Indo-Iranian
from the parental stock began already during Upper
Paleolithic times." Thus any PU/PIA contact must have
occurred after this separation, given the loanword stock.

"Uralics and Indo-Europeans: Problems of Time and Space"
is J. P. Mallory's article. Presumably, we are much more
able to determine Uralic homelands than Proto-Indo-European
for a number of reasons, which Mallory points out. He
outlines 5 assessment principles for determining a solution
to a linguistic homeland problem: Temporal-spatial
plausibility; Exclusion principle; Relationship principle;
Total distribution principle; and Archaeological

Temporal-Spatial plausibility presupposes the idea that
"Time and place in homeland research are dependent
variables, i.e., there is no meaningful concept of one
without the other." This sheds some light on the sort of
different ideas people have about the Uralic homeland:
either there seems to be "Deep time depth with broad
territory" or there is "Shallow time depth with confined
territory." A comparison is then drawn between Uralic
and Northern Athapaskan and Algonquian languages, and their
distributions are collectively superimposed on a map of
North America.

In subsequent sections, the author considers
glottochronology (and dismisses it); Estimation (a time
estimation for earliest differentiation among Uralic
languages); and external contact dating (as it applies to
loanwords in Uralic). The linguistic cultural date of
Uralic is considered in the context of Corded Ware
(Fat'yanovo) cultural distribution. In this light, it is
more easy to see where Uralic contact to IE may have
occurred, and also, which loanwords could have been
borrowed. The Total Distribution Principle requires that,
as far as the Uralic homeland problem is concerned "all the
pieces of the puzzle fit together with no exceptions. "
The total distribution principle is forfeit whenever one
argues that one can fix a segment of the protolanguage if
one can anchor that segment to a fixed, given area. In
what could lead to the next section, Milton Nunez (1987) is
quoted: "It seems logical to assume that major migrations
should be reflected in the archaeological material. But
there is no evidence for a major migration that could have
brought a Finnic language to Finland other than that
connected with the Mesolithic colonization of the country.
" Archaeological plausibility is the idea that the
archaeological record acts as a proxy to the linguistic
one, in the absence of the latter.

Vladimir Napol'skih's article "Tocharisch-Uralische
Berührungen: Sprache und Archäologie" focuses on Uralic
borrowings from the Tocharian language branch. There is
some discussion in the article about the Uralic languages
that had already diverged by the time of borrowing:
(Proto-Permic; Proto-Samoyedic; Proto-Ugric; and Finno-
Volgaic). There is also some discussion about the cultural
and technological contexts in which the Tocharian
borrowings fit (metallurgy and horse breeding). The
Afanas'evo culture seems to represent the target language
for many of the borrowings. In this light, a number of
etymologies (many for current words) are discussed.

Tapani Salminen's article is titled: "The rise of the
Finno-Ugric Language Family." In it, he acknowledges that
there are radically different ideas about the source of
Finno-Ugric languages. As such, there are a number of
problems which need to be addressed by scholars attempting
to study and classify the languages:
1. How are Finno-Ugric Languages related to each other,
and how are they classified?
2. What is the oldest center of expansion of the Finno-Ugric
3. When did the first contacts between Finno-Ugric and IE
take place?
4. What are the possibilities for a distant relationship
between Finno-Ugric and IE?

The sections in the article would seem to correspond to the
various problems and the way that Salminen addresses them.
The "Classification" deals with, firstly, the traditional
binary classification of the Uralic family. Firstly, of
course, came Proto-Uralic, which would seem to have
diverged into Proto-Saami, Proto-Finnic, Proto-Mordvin,
Proto-Mari, Proto-Permian, Proto-Hungarian, Proto-Mansi,
Proto-Khanty, and Proto-Samoyed, but with several overlaps
(e.g. Ugro-Samoyed, Finno-Volgaic) which may be a real
genetic units instead of actual transitional languages.
The fulcrum here seems to be that "whatever the value of
the proposed innovations is, the crucial thing is that they
are very few; so few that even their cumulative effect is
not sufficient to make a lowest level intermediate
protolanguage (e.g. Proto-Finno-Saami(PFS)) different from
a higher-level one (i.e. PU)." There is some subsequent
discussion about which sort of model is actually best for
classifying languages taxonomically, a circle, wave or tree
model. (It would have been useful at this point to see some
examples, rather than a reference to another work).

In subsequent sections, the concept of Urheimat is
discussed in the context of shared lexicon; as Finno-Ugric
languages are distributed across chain-like across a single
ecological zone, one can assume that the proto-languages
began somewhere close to the center of this zone (where
Mari, Udmurt, and Mordvin are spoken). The section "Indo-
European Contacts" considers the idea that "it does not
matter much if the primeval Finno-Ugric and Indo-European
centers of expansion are thought to have been located next
to each other or not, because even at the time of a
relatively late first contact, the dialects within the
protolanguage continuums had not differentiated much."
This means, among other things, that some early language
(e.g. Proto-Samoyedic) had split from the proto-language at
a point before many (if not all) of the earliest contacts
with PIE. Also, the Saami word for water has a cognate
only in Khanty; this give more weight to the idea that the
so-called Uralic word for water is borrowed.

In the next article, Pekka Sammalahti discusses Indo-
European Loanwords in Saami. He examines the implications
of early IE sources and distributions. Surprisingly, "the
concept of IE loanwords in Saami is fairly new" dating
from the 60's or so. The article contains etymologies of
18 items. Following this, the discussion turns to those
loanwords borrowed from IE idioms with PIE phonetic traits.
There is an indexed table of PIE loanwords in Saami which
demonstrates a variety of attributes concerning the
substratum, including distribution and source. Another
table charts the distribution of the oldest indigenous
words in Saami, which is divided by Uralic indigenous;
Finno-Ugric indigenous; and Finno-Permic indigenous.
content words in Saami. Lastly, the relevant implications
of the distributions are discussed.

In the very last article, Peter Schrijver discusses "Lost
Languages in Northern Europe. By this, he's referring to
"the nature and origin of words of non-Indo-European stock
in northern Indo-European languages (Germanic, Celtic)
which have cognates in Lappish or Finnish." As it happens,
there has been some progress in recent years regarding the
identification of non-IE substratum languages. The article
acknowledges three such substratums: 1.) The "Old European
Hydronomy" language; 2.)the "language of bird names" as he
calls it; and 3.)The "language of geminates" which the
author seems the most concerned with. Apparently this
substratum appears in Germanic, Celtic and Balto-Slavic.
This language would appear to have been localized in
Northern Europe. As I understand this article, neither FU
nor Uralic would appear to be the source of this language
of geminates. However, there is apparently some limited
evidence for Finno-Ugric loanwords in Indo-European.

The book also contains a number of abstracts. "Ancient
Metallurgy in Northern Eurasia: On the problem of Contacts
between the Indo-European and Uralic-Speaking peoples"
discusses some of the archeological and regional
implications of this problem. "Chronology of the Volga-Oka
Valley; Neolithic and the Lyalovo Migrations" looks at
current evidence to ascertain "information on ethnic
history and migration in the Neolithic period."
"Migrations, Diffusion and Uninterrupted Development in the
Stone Age of the Forest Zone of Eastern Europe: Some
remarks" considers these ideas in the context of post-
glacial northeast Europe. Lastly, "The Problem of
Interaction of Cultural Traditions in the Bronze Age in
Central Russia (Volga-Oka Basin)" examines "an analysis of
the ethno cultural situation in central Russia in the
Bronze Age."

In my opinion the book without a doubt illustrates the
range of ideas and methodologies available to the modern
scholar in this area. While this book could never be read
as even anything resembling a popular introduction to the
subject, it sheds a clear and resonant light on just how
divided the camps are when considering such topics as the
overlap between archaeological and linguistic evidence.
While I was able, in this review, to highlight in summary,
some articles containing points in the discussion I
personally found interesting, writing this review was
extremely difficult in the sense that it wasn't always so
easy to summarize some of the articles, as some of the main
points in them were not always so clear.

Regardless of these shortcomings, I'd strongly recommend
this book to any scholar who is considering a pursuit in
these areas.

ABOUT THE REVIEWER John Hammink holds a B.Sc. in Linguistics from Eastern Michigan University. He has been working for the last six years in the areas of data-security software validation. His work focus has ranged from test automation and document inspections which apply corpus-linguistic methodologies. Most recently, he has developed and taught seminars to address the problem of linguistic ambiguity in software requirements and the downstream cost effects these have. His other interests include linguistic evolution and the Uralic Language family.

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