Geometric representations of language taxonomies

Ph Blanchard, F. Petroni, M. Serva, D. Volchenkov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


A Markov chain analysis of a network generated by the matrix of lexical distances allows for representing complex relationships between different languages in a language family geometrically, in terms of distances and angles. The fully automated method for construction of language taxonomy is tested on a sample of fifty languages of the Indo-European language group and applied to a sample of fifty languages of the Austronesian language group. The Anatolian and Kurgan hypotheses of the Indo-European origin and the 'express train' model of the Polynesian origin are thoroughly discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)679-699
Number of pages21
JournalComputer Speech and Language
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 2011


  • Indo-European and Polynesian origins
  • Language taxonomy
  • Lexicostatistic data analysis


Dive into the research topics of 'Geometric representations of language taxonomies'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this