The reconstruction of Proto-Huastecan.
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Arts
The broad objective of this investigation is a phonological and lexical reconstruction of ProtoHuastecan, the proto-language from which the Huastecan languages, Chicomuceltec and Huaslee, are descended. The thesis outlines the probable sound changes that took place in the language's evolution, from its beginnings in Proto-Mayan to its split into the two daughter languages. The methodology employed to reconstruct Proto-Huastecan is the Comparative Method, the established method of historical linguistic reconstruction. Because Chicomueeltee is extinct, and is recorded only in sources which do not accurately represent its phonology, this study also encompasses the philological interpretation of the Chicomucehec transcriptions. To place the reconstruction with in the broader context of Huaslecun linguistic prehistory, an overview of scholarship pertaining to Huastecan's placement in Mayan sub-grouping, and of the diversification of Chicomuceltec and Huastec is also presented.