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The Germanic Sound Shift (Grimm’s Law)PIE					GermanicVoiceless stops: p,t,k			Voiceless spirants: f,þ,χVoiced aspirated stops: bh, dh, gh	Voiced spirants: 						(becoming) the voiced unaspirated stops b, d, g					in certain phonetic 					environments in the 					historical daughter 					languages)Voiced unaspirated stops: b, d, g	Voiceless unaspirated					stops: p, t, k
Example: PIE voiceless stops p, t, k became the Proto-Germanic corresponding voiceless spirants f, þ, χ:Latin				Gothicpecu				faíhu “cattle”três				þreis “three”cornû				haúrn “horn” 				(Gothic h equals χ)
Exceptions to the rule: Verner’s LawLatin			Gothicseptem		sibun	“seven”centum		hund	“hundred”dux			(OE heretoga) “duke”As noted by Karl Verner (1875) was the crucial factor of accent in combination with surrounding sounds: On the basis of evidence from PIE languages such as Sanskrit and Greek, Verner was able to show that all the words in PIE *p had changed in Germanic to f either had that *p as the first sound in the word, or >>
Verner’s Law (con’t)>> had the accent on the syllable immediately preceding *p, as in the examples below:IE *pətér  >  Gothic fadar		“father”IE *népôt >  ON nefi		“nefi”On the other hand, those *p’s that eventually became German b where those that had NOT stood in initial position and that had not had the accent on the immediately preceding syllable, as in the example below:IE *sep(t)m >  Gothic sibun	“seven”IE *upéri  >  OHG ubar 		“over”

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Verner´s Law and Grim´s Law

  • 1. The Germanic Sound Shift (Grimm’s Law)PIE GermanicVoiceless stops: p,t,k Voiceless spirants: f,þ,χVoiced aspirated stops: bh, dh, gh Voiced spirants: (becoming) the voiced unaspirated stops b, d, g in certain phonetic environments in the historical daughter languages)Voiced unaspirated stops: b, d, g Voiceless unaspirated stops: p, t, k
  • 2. Example: PIE voiceless stops p, t, k became the Proto-Germanic corresponding voiceless spirants f, þ, χ:Latin Gothicpecu faíhu “cattle”três þreis “three”cornû haúrn “horn” (Gothic h equals χ)
  • 3. Exceptions to the rule: Verner’s LawLatin Gothicseptem sibun “seven”centum hund “hundred”dux (OE heretoga) “duke”As noted by Karl Verner (1875) was the crucial factor of accent in combination with surrounding sounds: On the basis of evidence from PIE languages such as Sanskrit and Greek, Verner was able to show that all the words in PIE *p had changed in Germanic to f either had that *p as the first sound in the word, or >>
  • 4. Verner’s Law (con’t)>> had the accent on the syllable immediately preceding *p, as in the examples below:IE *pətér > Gothic fadar “father”IE *népôt > ON nefi “nefi”On the other hand, those *p’s that eventually became German b where those that had NOT stood in initial position and that had not had the accent on the immediately preceding syllable, as in the example below:IE *sep(t)m > Gothic sibun “seven”IE *upéri > OHG ubar “over”