Title: Gaulish language
Source document: Sborník prací Filozofické fakulty brněnské univerzity. N, Řada klasická. 2008, vol. 57, iss. N13, pp. -65
License: Not specified license
In this article the state-of-the-art of research in the field of the Gaul i sh language is summarized, compared and evaluated. The article begins with Caesar's information about the borders of Gaul, and its etymology. A brief survey of four epigraphic traditions recording the varieties of Gaulish follows. The largest space is devoted to illustrative examples of various Gaulish texts from Northern Italy and Gaul. Three special monuments are analyzed separately, the Calendar of Coligny, Medici compendium of Marcellus of Bordeaux, and Endlicher's or Viennese Glossary. In the case of the famous Calendar the month-names and other terms, usually in abbreviations, are etymologized according to various scholars. In the following part the lexical data from the ancient glosses and Gaulish loans in Latin and Gallo-Romance languages are summarized. In the second half of the present study the fragments of Gaulish grammar are sketched. The phonetic correspondences are mapped on the Goidelic & Brittonic vs. Gaulish material. The nominal declension is illustrated by the paradigms of the o-, a-, i-, u-, r-, n- and consonant stems. The case endings are compared wi th their counterparts in Lepontic, Celtiberian and Old Irish, plus Goidelic and late Indo-European reconstructions. The personal pronouns and demonstratives are illustrated by concrete examples from texts. Here a new etymology is proposed: a hypothetical continuant of lE *ego "I" in regu-c cambion from the inscription from Chamalieres which is derivable from *rego eg(o) kmbiom "I" straighten the bent one". Thanks to the inscription from La Graufesenque and the Calendar of Coligny, almost all Gaulish numerals of the first decade are known. On the other hand, it is difficult to reconstruct even one complete paradigm of the verbal conjugation. And so only isolated examples can be analyzed. Finally, the position of Gaulish within Celtic from the point of view of "recalibrated" glottochronology is discussed.