Sebastian Shaumyan

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Sebastian Konstantinovich Shaumyan (1916-02-27 – 2007-01-21) was a Soviet and later American linguist who developed the theory of Applicational Grammar.


Shaumyan was born in Tbilisi, where he studied philology before going to Moscow to study linguistics. There he became a strong advocate of the structural linguistics initiated by de Saussure and developed by the Prague School. His research in this area culminated in 1965 with the publication of Shaumyan 1965. In the same year he founded the Section of Structural Linguistics at the Institute of Russian Language in Moscow. In 1975, Shaumyan joined the Linguistics Department of Yale University. He remained active in the field after his retirement. He died in London.


Shaumyan was best known for the theory of Applicational Grammar, developed in Shaumyan 1975 and 1987.


  • 1965. Structural linguistics.
  • 1975. Applicational Grammar as a Semiotic Theory of Natural Language
  • 1987. A Semiotic Theory of Language
  • 2006. Signs, Mind and Reality