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Geolinguistic Continuities in the Celto-Atlantic Area and in Western Europe

Daniel Le Bris 1 
1 CRBC Brest - Centre de recherche bretonne et celtique
UBO - Université de Brest, IBSHS - Institut Brestois des Sciences de l'Homme et de la Société
Abstract : Referring to the traditional “Kurgan theory”, the archaeological discoveries of the last thirty years show at an overwhelming majority that there is no evidence of an Indo-European invasion during the 4th Millennium BC at the European level1. Reconsidering the origin of European languages in that new perspective, it appears that the Celts would not have migrated from a territory situated between Austria and southern Germany, as has been generally accepted since the nineteenth century. They could have settled since the end of Upper Palaeolithic and the Mesolithic as groups of fishermen and seafarers along the Atlantic shores from the Iberian Peninsula to the British Isles through ancient Gaul. On the basis of dialectal and geolinguistic data, the present approach tries to better understand this hypothesis. Studying geolinguistic variations, it considers the Celto-Atlantic area and the exchanges that may have been established in the long term with the neighbouring linguistic Germanic and Romance areas. New lexical borrowings from Celtic to Romance and Germanic (and vice versa) open research perspectives and raise real questions about the continuity of language and population areas in the Atlantic zone of Europe.
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Daniel Le Bris. Geolinguistic Continuities in the Celto-Atlantic Area and in Western Europe. Philology, 2017, 3 (1), pp.117-134. ⟨10.3726/PHIL012017.5⟩. ⟨hal-02955581⟩



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