Note: This is the second edition of a previously published work.
Faithful to the spirit of Trask’s original text but updated to cover recent
developments, this book is an introduction to historical linguistics – the
study of language changes over time. Written in an engaging style and
illustrated with examples from a wide range of languages, the book covers
the fundamental concepts of language change, methods for historical
linguistics, linguistic reconstruction, sociolinguistic aspects of language
change, language contact, the birth and death of languages, language and
prehistory and the issue of very remote relations. A minimal knowledge of
linguistic concepts is needed and the book is suitable for undergraduate
students approaching the subject for the first time. The exercises will be
particularly useful to teachers and students alike.