A Sinologist's Handlist of Sino-Tibetan Lexical Comparisons

The objective of the work of W. South Coblin has been to collect various materials on Chinese and Tibeto-Burman languages into a single list and to arrange this list in a clear and convenient form, with indexes which make the information easily accessible.

The author presents the view that Chinese and the Tibeto-Burman languages must have descended from a common proto-language. He reconstructs Sino-Tibetan proto-forms from which Chinese and Tibeto-Burman reflexes can be derived by regular rules. The importance of the reconstructive exercise lies not in the detail of this or any other reconstructed system but in the fact that the exercise can be successfully carried out, regardless of theoretical convictions or orientations.


"The title of the book needs a little correction: it is not only 'a Sinologist’s handbook'; the scope of the book is much wider. ... The book will be surely found interesting, even fascinating, by anyone interested in the reconstructive exercise of protolanguages in general."

O. Švarný in Archív Orientální



I. Introduction

II. The Sound System of Sino-Tibetan

     ST Initials

     Initial Clusters




     Final Consonants

     Final Clusters


III. Sino-Tibetan Lexical Comparisons (with Addenda)

IV. Indexes
Index to Tibetan Forms in the Data

      Index to Chinese Forms in the Data




Monumenta Serica
Monograph Series XVIII

ISBN 3-87787-208-5
ISSN 0179-261X