Hispano-Celtic languages

Hispano-Celtic is a hypernym to include all varieties of Celtic that were spoken in the Iberian Peninsula before the arrival of the Romans (in c. 218 BC, during the Second Punic War):

  • a northeastern inland language attested at a relatively late date in the extensive corpus of Celtiberian. This variety, which Jordán Cólera proposed to name northeastern Hispano-Celtic, has long been synonymous with the term Hispano-Celtic and is universally accepted as a Celtic language.
  • a language in the northwestern corner of the peninsula, with a northern and western boundary marked by the Atlantic Ocean, a southern boundary along the river Douro, and an eastern boundary marked by Oviedo, which Jordán Cólera has proposed to call northwestern Hispano-Celtic, where there is a corpus of Latin inscriptions containing isolated words and sentences that are clearly Celtic.

    Western Hispano-Celtic is a term that has been proposed for a language continuum of dlalects, ranging from Celtic Gallaecian, Tartessian (according to Koch and others) to Lusitanian, which has sometimes been labelled "para-Celtic", located in the Iberian peninsula west of an imaginary line running north–south linking Oviedo and Mérida. According to Koch, the Western Celtic varieties of the Iberian Peninsula share with Celtiberian a sufficient core of distinctive features to justify Hispano-Celtic as a term for a linguistic subfamily, as opposed to a purely-geographical classification. In Naturalis Historia 3.13 (written 77–79 CE), Pliny the Elder stated that the Celtici of Baetica (now western Andalusia) descended from the Celtiberians of Lusitania since they shared common religions, languages and names for their fortified settlements.

    As part of the effort to prove the existence of a western Iberian Hispano-Celtic dialect continuum, there have been attempts to differentiate the Vettonian dialect from the neighbouring Lusitanian language using the personal names of the Vettones to describe the following sound changes (Proto-Indo-European to Proto-Celtic):
  • *ō > ā occurs in Enimarus.
  • *ō > ū in final syllables, as indicated by the suffix of Abrunus, Caurunius.
  • *ē > ī is attested in the genitive singular Riuei.
  • *n̥ > an appears in Argantonius.
  • *m̥ > am in names with Amb-.
  • *gʷ > b is attested in names such as Bouius, derived from *gʷow- 'cow'.
  • *kʷ in PIE *perkʷ-u- 'oak' appears in a lenited form in the name Erguena.
  • *p > ɸ > 0 is attested in: # *perkʷ-u- > ergʷ- in Erguena (see above). # *plab- > lab- in Laboina. # *uper- > ur- in Uralus and Urocius.
  • However, *p is preserved in Cupiena, a Vettonian name not attested in Lusitania; also in names like Pinara, while *-pl- probably developed into -bl- in names like Ableca.