Definition of comparative linguistics in US English:

comparative linguistics

plural noun

  • treated as singular The study of similarities and differences between languages, in particular the comparison of related languages with a view to reconstructing forms in their lost parent languages.

    • ‘Is this not another example of the pitfalls of comparative linguistics?’
    • ‘Such sound shifts in comparative linguistics parallel, almost uncannily, the slow march of genetic mutations as offspring populations gradually separate from a parent stock.’
    • ‘These historical and philosophical puzzles cannot be solved by turning to current scholarship in comparative linguistics or cognitive science, because those literatures are also in some disarray.’


comparative linguistics

/kəmˈpɛrədɪv lɪŋˈɡwɪstɪks/