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see Anatolian languagesAnatolian languages
, subfamily of the Indo-European family of languages (see The Indo-European Family of Languages, table); the term "Anatolian languages" is also used to refer to all languages, Indo-European and non-Indo-European, that were spoken in Anatolia in ancient times.
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the language of the Hittites. Hittite is a Hittite-Luwian language. The language is attested primarily by texts from the Boğazköy archive, although some texts have been found at such sites as Ugarit and Amarna. Hittite is divided into three periods of development: Old Hittite (18th to 16th centuries B.C.), Middle Hittite (15th and early 14th centuries B.C.), and New Hittite (14th to early 12th centuries B.C.). New discoveries of Old Hittite texts are making it possible to establish a more precise chronology.

Hittite is the most fully documented and studied of the Hittite-Luwian languages. Its linguistic investigation began in 1915 when the Czech scholar B. Hrozný deciphered the cuneiform inscriptions and showed Hittite to be an Indo-European language (seeINDO-EUROPEAN LANGUAGE). Hittite data have proved extremely important to Indo-European linguistics and to research on general questions in Indo-European studies.

A unique archaic feature of Hittite is its retention of a laryngeal. The noun has two genders. Verbs have two sets of endings, corresponding to the Indo-European active and medium and/or perfect voice. The syntax of Hittite is extremely archaic. The language does show, however, certain innovations. The theory of some scholars that the Hittite lexicon is not Indo-European fails to explain why the numerous borrowings from such languages as Hattic and Hurrian primarily affect only the marginal areas of the lexicon; moreover, the reading of many words has been obscured by Sumarian and Akkadian ideograms. Research has been greatly hampered by the deficiencies of cuneiform writing, which was ill-suited to Hittite phonology; in particular, many questions remain unanswered regarding consonant shift and the vowel system.


Ivanov, V. V. Khettskii iazyk. Moscow, 1963.
Ivanov, V. V. Obshcheindoevropeiskaia, praslavianskaia i anatoliiskaia iazykovye sistemy. Moscow, 1965.
Friedrich, J. Kratkaia grammatika khettskogo iazyka. Moscow, 1952. (Translated from German.)
Kammenhuber, A. “Zur Stellung des Hethitisch-Luvischen innerhalb der indogermanischen Gemeinsprache.” Zeitschrift für vergleichende Sprachforschung, 1961, vol. 77.
Gusmani, R. II lessico ittito. Naples, 1971.


References in periodicals archive ?
Most, however, remain true to the collection's title and concentrate on the history, language, and culture of the Hittite empire and of the "Neo-Hittite" successor states of the early Iron Age.
Returning to the Late Bronze Age, the final book to be considered in this review is Theo van den Hout's Elements of Hittite, which is a publication of the Hittite language course as taught by the author at the University of Chicago over the last 20 years.
The Hittites lived in what is now modern Turkey and Northern Syria, and their empire - which flourished from 1600 to 1200BC - was the chief power and cultural force in Western Asia.
Sarah Stamper in a nomad's tent The bombed-out Hittite Gallery at Liverpool City Museum, May, 1941 Sarah Stamper, from the University of Liverpool, examines a black and white photograph of Professor John Garstang''s actual dig in Turkey, which forms part of the Lost World of The Hittite Empire, recreated at the Victoria Gallery and Museum Picture: JAMES MALONEY/ jm260511lostworld-4
Mouton divides Hittite dreams into two categories: dream messages and bad dreams.
The transaction may undervalue Hittite, which has $492 million in net cash.
Tin, which was found inside earth jars during the excavations, was discovered in the same place as the two Hittite figures.
examines the use of blood to purge the effects of sin and impurity in Hittite and biblical ritual.
However, the Hittites were almost completely forgotten until the work of John Garstang.
A on Sunday that they found two skulls from Hittite period, and seals from Neolithic period in Yumuktepe tumulus which was one of the oldest settlement areas of Anatolia.
Based largely on the Hittite literature but some of the archaeological evidence too, Life and society covers royalty, law, skills, marriage, gods, the dead, festivals and rites, myths, and Hattusa, with a final chapter on 'Links' to the Greeks.
LIKE the nomadic tribe of the Bible which provided their name, golfing Hittites from Merseyside are off on a major journey.