what do these symbols mean in this reconstructed proto-Indo-European root?

There is a lowercase h in the exponent of the b, there is a subscript of 2 on the h at the end.  Sometimes you also see an uppercase H in the middle or the end of a root.  Do these things tell you anything about the approximate pronunciation?  Or are they there for some other reason that a person who isn't studying linguistics wouldn't understand? 

In case you're wondering why I care, I am bored and would like to create my own language based on PIE.   

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1 Answer

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    h1, h2, h3 represent consonants whose actual pronunciation is not known with certainty, although they may have been different versions of the "ch" or "kh" sound as in German "ach!" or Scottish "loch". After these sounds themselves disappeared, their former presence was reflected in the different effects they had on adjacent vowels.

    The superscript "h" above a consonant means that it's aspirated. The same consonant without the "h" is unaspirated.

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