Definition of protolinguistics in US English:

protolinguistics

noun

  • The branch of linguistics that deals with the development of language from non-verbal communication; the study of proto-languages. Also (occasionally): an early form of linguistics.

Origin

1970s; earliest use found in Language. From proto- + linguistic, after protolinguistic.

Pronunciation

protolinguistics

/ˌprəʊtə(ʊ)lɪŋˈɡwɪstɪks/