Languages

Proto-Germanic, Eastern

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Introduction

Proto-Germanic is the hypothetical common ancestor (proto-language) of all the Germanic languages such as modern English, Dutch, Afrikaans, German, Danish, Norwegian, Icelandic, Faroese, and Swedish. The Proto-Germanic language is not directly attested by any surviving texts but has been reconstructed using the comparative method. However, a few surviving inscriptions in a runic script from Scandinavia dated to c. 200 are thought to represent a stage of Proto-Norse or Late Common Germanic immediately following the "Proto-Germanic" stage.

Proto-Germanic evolved into following languages by the 4th century:

Proto-Germanic is itself descended from Proto-Indo-European.

The Proto-Germanic verb

  • Two voices: Active and Passive
  • Three moods: Indicative, Subjunctive, and Imperative
  • 3 numbers: Singular, Dual, and Plural
  • 3 persons

Sample verb: beran

  • Present participle: berand
  • Past participle: boren
ACTIVE PASSIVE
Indicative Imperative Subjunctive Indicative Subjunctive
Present Past Present Past Present Present
Sg.1 bera berɔ̄ - bar bērī berad̵e berɛ̄d̵u
Sg.2 beriz berɛ̄z ber bart bērīz beraze berɛ̄zu
Sg.3 berid̵ berɛ̄ berōd̵au bar bērī berad̵e berɛ̄d̵u
Du.1 berōz berɛ̄we - bēru bērīwe - -
Du.2 berad̵z berɛ̄d̵z - bērts bērīd̵z - -
Pl.1 berumz berɛ̄me - bērm bērīme berande berɛ̄ndu
Pl.2 bered̵ berɛ̄d̵ - bērɵ bērīd̵
Pl.3 berand berɛ̄n berandōu bērun bērīd̵

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