Volume 1, Issue 2
  • ISSN 0302-5160
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9781
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The author puts forward the claim that The Indian Grammar Begun (1666) of John Eliot of Massachusetts (1604-90) constitutes the first published account of an 'exotic' language that can rightfully be called scientific (0.). The first portion of the argument treats Eliot's English-based orthography and the problems it poses in the description of a language completely different from English (1.). Eliot's use of a 'morphophonemic' transcription is presented (2.). Eliot's The Logick Primer (1672) is suggested as a source of particular insights into the Puritan understanding and use of logic (3.). Having speculated about the impact that Jesus College, Cambridge, may have had on Eliot's linguistic accomplishments in his analysis of an Amerindian language (4.), the author concludes that Eliot derserves to be called the true founder of American linguistics, in particular since he anticipated modern use of levels of representation by more than a century (5.).


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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