October 29, 2017

A Song of Sheep and Horses


A Song of Sheep and Horses
Book Three
A Storm of Words
vetera verba,
priscae linguae

Reconstructed Indo-European and Uralic proto-languages and their contacts

Version: 1.2 (3 June 2019)

 A Storm of Words: vetera verba, priscae linguae is the third volume, but nevertheless main book of the series A Song of Sheep and Horses: eurafrasia nostratica, eurasia indouralica. The series also includes archaeological and genetic information in volumes 1 and 2, A Game of Clans & A Clash of Chiefs, and supplementary maps and graphics in volume 4, A Feat of Crowds.

This volume, as it can be inferred from the relative relevance of each section, is centered on North-West Indo-European and its reconstruction. The whole text deals with that matter and, as a consequence, with other Proto-Indo-European stages and dialects, as well as neighbouring languages, including especially Uralic and its dialects.

It is the continuation of our North-West Indo-European monograph (see below), an evolving collection of papers relevant to the reconstruction of the language of a close community of speakers, demonstrated by recent genetic studies to be related to the peoples that expanded with the Yamna culture into central Europe, its transformation into the East Bell Beaker culture, and its subsequent expansion into central, west and northern Europe.

What was initially described by Krahe as an Old European community based on studies of European hydronymy, and what was described through comparative grammar as a North-West Indo-European group of dialects – sharing common lexical and grammatical traits –, is now more clearly defined as an ancient Indo-European proto-language that expanded at least twice from two small regions during the third millennium: from the North Pontic steppe to the Carpathian basin in the first half, and from the Danube to the rest of Europe in the second half.

Its definition and reconstruction is important not only for the reconstruction and classification of European languages that derive from this parent language, but for a better definition of Graeco-Aryan proto-languages, and of the parent Late Proto-Indo-European language.

The book is also an experiment on how far back linguistic reconstruction can offer a glimpse of how our ancestors might have spoken thousands of years ago.


PLEASE NOTE: A correction to the multiple Uralic ~ Indo-European layers has started (NOV 2020) with the draft on Palaeolinguistics & the Proto-Uralic homeland.

Read online or download



Included with the original monograph was a recording of Schleicher’s fable in North-West Indo-European. While there are certain issues with the reconstruction (some of them commented in the monograph), this rendition is a fairly good example of how the proto-language must have sounded like. You have the video with subtitles in many different languages in Youtube and in Facebook, and as audio at SoundCloud.

(Select your preferred subtitles from the right bottom corner of this viewer)

Latest Revisions

You can share comments and corrections of any kind in form (spelling, expressions, sources) or content directly with the author at cq[email protected], or you can share them publicly in the appropriate forum thread for discussion. Changes will be made as soon as possible after notification:

  • 3 JUN 2019 :: (v. 1.2) PRINTED EDITION. Changes to Uralic nomenclature and texts, to make them compatible with Häkkinen (2009). Other minor changes.
  • 9 MAR 2019 :: (v. 1.16) Minor additions to NWIE section (two more words).
  • 6 MAR 2019 :: (v. 1.15) Additions especially to the Old European section; also minor additions to Palaeo-Balkan.
  • 7 FEB 2019 :: (v. 1.1) Minor additions to Old European hydronymy (recent references), Indo-Uralic and Eurasian.
  • 23 JAN 2019 :: (v. 1.09) Eliminated *he from CIE version of the fable; removed repeated sentence in Armenian section.
  • 20 JAN 2019 :: (v. 1.08) Minor formal corrections.
  • 18 JAN 2019 :: (v. 1.07) Minor formal corrections.
  • 18 JAN 2019 :: (v. 1.06) Correction of notation in Sanskrit words; minor addition to Fennic borrowings.
  • 17 JAN 2019 :: (v. 1.05) Minor formal corrections to Late Uralic and Armenian section.
  • 3 JAN 2019 :: (v. 1.04) Minor format errors.
  • 3 JAN 2019 :: (v. 1.03) Added references for Uralic mythology.
  • 2 JAN 2019 :: (v. 1.02) Renaming of sections: avoiding the use of “Proto-” in the titles, to standardize nomenclature.
  • 1 JAN 2019 :: (v. 1.01) Minor errors in the section on Proto-Italic.

Older versions

This work is based on the monograph on North-West Indo-European: