Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Phoneme Study Pinpoints Origin of Modern Languages


  • 500 languages traced back to Stone Age dialect
  • The further away from Africa a language is spoken, the fewer distinct sounds it has
  • English has around 46 sounds, while the San bushmen of South Africa use a staggering 200
  • Study finds speech evolved 'at least 100,000 years ago'

Every language in the world - from English to Mandarin - evolved from a prehistoric 'mother tongue' first spoken in Africa tens of thousands of years ago, a new study reveals.

After analysing more than 500 languages, Dr Quentin Atkinson found compelling evidence that they can be traced back to a long-forgotten dialect spoken by our Stone Age ancestors.

The findings don't just pinpoint the origin of language to Africa - they also show that speech evolved at least 100,000 years ago, far earlier than previously thought.


Scientists have found that every language can be traced back to a long-forgotten dialect spoken by our Stone Age ancestors in Africa


Scientists have found that every language can be traced back to a long-forgotten dialect spoken by our Stone Age ancestors in Africa. The further away from Africa a language is spoken, the fewer distinct phonemes it has.

Read more here.


Note that the Daily Mail headline places Eve in the area of Africa designated as part of the region of Eden in Genesis 10.

The first major migration of peoples out of Africa took place about 100,000 years ago. Subsequent migrations involved Proto-Saharans, Nilotes and Kushites. The most recent migration took place around 6000 years ago. This is the expansion of Abraham's Horite (ha-biru/Hebrew) people across the Afro-Asiatic Dominion as presented in Genesis 10.

The ancestors of the Chinese came from Africa bout 80,000 years ago.


Related reading: The Afro-Asiatic Dominion; A Scientific Timeline of Genesis; The Nile-Japan Ainu Connection; DNA Evidence of the Kushite Expansion; Is Hebrew an African Language?; Migrations Out of Africa

3 comments:

ofgrace said...

Interesting study. It strikes me as being a bit counterintuitive to much of Evolutionary theory that posits the simple evolving into more complex forms. It seems, at least phonemically, the opposite is the case here.

Alice Linsley said...

Precisely. The opposite is the case in genetics also. The greatest genetic complexity is found in African populations and the farther from Africa the less genetic diversity.

Alice Linsley said...

The first created people appeared on earth suddenly and unheralded about 3 million years ago in East Africa. This is also where the oldest human fossils have been found. This is also the point of origin of the genetic types (molecular genetics) and of modern languages. Genesis tells us that Abraham's ancestors came from this part of Africa (Kush) and that Eden spanned from two rivers in East Africa to the Tigris-Euphrates in Mesopotamia. So is there reason to accept the Biblical account of Adam (Ha-Dam) and Eve (Ha-va) as first parents? Absolutely!