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Much of the work that is labeled 'descriptive' within linguistics comprises two activities, i.e. the collection of primary data and a (low-level) analysis of these data. These are indeed two separate activities as shown by the fact that the methods employed in each activity differ substantially. To date, the field concerned with the first activity -called 'documentary linguistics' here -has received very little attention from linguists. It is proposed that documentary linguistics be conceiveddoi:10.1515/ling.19220.127.116.11 fatcat:d3w37pydyfawpov6ka2766u65e