How Languages Evolved

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Morenike Adebayo

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3702 How Languages Evolved
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Bonjour! Namastē! Hyālō! However you say “hello,” it might surprise you to learn that over 400 Indo-European languages may have come from one single language spoken mainly in ancient Anatolia, which is now modern-day Turkey. Indo-European languages are a specific language group of over 400 languages, including Spanish, German, Hindi, Portuguese and Urdu.

Created by the Business Insider Science team, the video animation below shows how languages could have spread from modern-day Turkey to Europe and Asia via the growth of farming, eventually evolving and becoming the languages we hear today.


A 2012 study published in Science, led by evolutionary biologist Quentin Atkinson from University of Auckland, New Zealand, was the basis of the animated map. Using the same computational methods that geneticists use to trace viral outbreaks, Atkinson mapped the possible root of today’s modern Indo-European languages and detailed how this could have spread and advanced through the world.

Check out the animation in the video below to see how we could all be essentially speaking the same language.



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