"Finding the Mother Tongue..." Topic
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| Parzival ||07 May 2013 2:29 p.m. PST|
Interesting news from the world of linguistic science— tracking back to humanity's common language, circa 13,000 BC.
Of course, the above article is just an overview. I may have to hunt down something more in-depth.
| etotheipi ||08 May 2013 4:45 a.m. PST|
|Grinning Norm ||12 May 2013 4:30 a.m. PST|
They've reconstructed the origins of a few words which have spread to a great many languages. If modern day humans would happen to travel back in time and find that particular region these words originated, they would probably have much less trouble making themselves understood with gestures than by the approximations of what these few words should have sounded like back then in that place.
Everywhere else people would have spoken other languages, which in turn have evolved and been replaced by these more successful ones, exchanging features, influencing each other. Traveling speed and communication between groups of people was a tad slower back then than in the information age, so there would have been much more room for isolated language communities.
13000BC also sounds quite optimistic. Typically reconstructing language to a time depth of half or even just one third of that is already pushing the limits of comparative historical linguistics.
So while these reconstructions may be valid, the implication of this being the language 'everyone' spoke is plain misleading and wrong.