Comparative historical linguistics is a branch of linguistics that involves comparing the historical development of languages in order to understand how they are related and to reconstruct the prehistoric stages of their evolution. It is based on the idea that languages change over time and that they share a common ancestry, and it seeks to identify and analyze these changes and relationships.
To conduct comparative historical linguistic analysis, linguists often rely on a variety of methods, including the comparison of word forms and meanings, the examination of grammatical structures and sound changes, and the analysis of texts and other language-related materials. They may also use techniques such as the reconstruction of proto-languages, which are hypothetical ancestor languages that are postulated to have given rise to a group of related languages.
One of the main goals of comparative historical linguistics is to trace the history and evolution of language families, which are groups of languages that are believed to have descended from a common ancestor. By comparing the languages within a language family and reconstructing their shared history, linguists can gain insights into the social, cultural, and historical contexts in which these languages have developed.