My field is the study of Europe's linguistic past through the history of the Indo-European languages. Since the dawn of history Europe has been covered by mainly Indo-European languages such as Greek, Latin, Baltic, Slavic and Germanic. These linguistic groups all split off from a hypothetical parent language spoken roughly five thousand years ago. My research focuses on the reconstruction of this language, the question where it was originally spoken, how and why its speakers spread across the continent, and in what way it evolved into the modern language of Europe.
I finished my dissertation in 2009 and am otherwise known for being the author of the Etymological Dictionary of Proto-Germanic (Brill, 2013), which appeared in the Leiden Etymological Dictionary Series edited by Prof. Alexander Lubotsky. Between 2017 and 2022 I will be leading the ERC Starting Grant project "The Linguistic Roots of Europe's Agricultural Transition", which aims at mapping the evidence for perhistoric language contact between Indo-European dialects and local European languages that later went extinct. In the same period I will be studying the linguistic impact of the Bell Beaker culture (2900 – 1800 BCE) at the project "Towards a New European Prehistory" led by archaeologist Kristian Kristiansen at Gothenburg University.
No relevant ancillary activities