areal linguistics

noun

variants or less commonly area linguistics
: a school of historical and comparative linguistics that denies the existence of phonetic laws without exceptions, questions the value of attempts to trace individual languages back to a common ancestral language, and chiefly emphasizes the study of the transmission through space of linguistic innovations which is considered as taking place quite readily even between languages that are not of common origin

called also neolinguistics

Word History

First Known Use

1967, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of areal linguistics was in 1967

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Cite this Entry

“Areal linguistics.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/areal%20linguistics. Accessed 23 Apr. 2024.

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