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also To·khar·i·an  (tō-kâr′ē-ən, -kär′-)
1. A member of a people living in Chinese Turkistan until about the tenth century.
2. Either of the two Indo-European languages of this people, called Tocharian A and Tocharian B, recorded from the seventh to the ninth century.
3. A branch of the Indo-European language family consisting of the two Tocharian languages.

[From Latin Tocharī, a people of ancient Central Asia (originally identified with the Tocharians by modern scholars after the first discovery of Tocharian texts), from Greek Tokharoi.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(tɒˈkɑːrɪən) or


1. (Historical Terms) a member of an Asian people with a complex material culture, sometimes thought to be of European origin, who lived in the Tarim Basin until overcome by the Uighurs around 800 ad
2. (Languages) the language of this people, known from records in a N Indian script of the 7th and 8th centuries ad. It belongs to the Indo-European family, is regarded as forming an independent branch, and shows closer affinities with the W or European group than with the E or Indo-Iranian group. The language is recorded in two dialects, known as Tocharian A and Tocharian B
[C20: ultimately from Greek Tokharoi, name of uncertain origin]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(toʊˈkɛər i ən, -ˈkɑr-)

1. an extinct Indo-European language spoken in the NE Tarim Basin of W China c500–800 a.d., having an eastern dialect (Tocharian A) and a western dialect (Tocharian B).
2. a speaker of Tocharian.
3. of or pertaining to Tocharian or its speakers.
[1925–30; < Greek Tóchar(oi) a Central Asian people + -ian]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Tocharian - a branch of the Indo-European language family that originated in central Asia during the first millennium A.D.
Indo-European language, Indo-Hittite, Indo-European - the family of languages that by 1000 BC were spoken throughout Europe and in parts of southwestern and southern Asia
East Tocharian, Turfan, Turfan dialect - a dialect of Tocharian
Kuchean, Kuchean dialect, West Tocharian - a dialect of Tocharian
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
That this book, a collection of writings related to Tocharian by Emil Sieg (1866-1951), should appear more than sixty years after his death underscores the continuing value of his work.
Fragments of the Tocharian A Maitreyasamiti-Nataka of the Xinjiang Museum, China, Transliterated, Translated and Annotated.
The Yuezhi/Tocharians--The Kushans were descended from a tribal confederation known as the Yuezhi to the Chinese, and as the Tocharians to a number of others, because they probably spoke the Indo-European language of Tocharian.
It is interesting to note, in fact, that the practice of writing can be ascribed to the common period (as uncontroversially documented by the pan-dialectal diffusion of the root pei-k/pei-g ("to write, to paint, to decorate") in Indo-Iranian, Tocharian, Balto-Slavic, Greek, Latin, and Germanic languages.
Historical Indo-European linguists explore language and meter in diachrony and synchrony from such perspectives as phonological evidence for pada cohesion in Rigvedic versification; aede, ea and the form of the Homeric word for goddess; Indo-European origins of the Greek hexameter; from proto-Indo-European to Italic meter; the Homeric formulary template and a linguistic innovation in the epics, a comparison of the Tocharian A and B metrical traditions.
The manuscripts, hailing from various sites around Khotan on the southern branch of the Silk Road and around Kucha on the northern branch, were primarily written in Brahmi script and in the Sanskrit, Khotanese, Tumshuqese, and Tocharian languages.
The 10 academic essays consider such topics as three additions to the Tocharian B aviary, Tocharian AB kwar- to grow old, silk in ancient Kucha and the Tocharian B word kaum* found in the documents of the Tang period, Tocharian B nouns with an oblique singular in -a, Tocharian Vinaya fragments in the London and Paris collections, and vowel lengthening before distinctively voiced consonants in Tocharian.
The assumption by Laut, that an account of the foundation of the order of nuns can be found in the Maitrisimit, an assumption followed by Pinault for a Tocharian counterpart, cf.
*[TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII.] after him) and of the Vogul word (*sat) on the other hand, separately: *[TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII.] being of Aryan or Proto-Tocharian origin and *sat reflecting early Tocharian B *[TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII.] (Blazek 1999 : 94).
This second volume covers Italic, Germanic, Armenian, Celtic, and Tocharian. The pages are numbered continuously across the volumes, and though the third volume is not yet published, it presumably will contain the index for the entire Handbook.