Navigation Links
Did Neandertals have language?
Date:7/9/2013

Fast-accumulating data seem to indicate that our close cousins, the Neandertals, were much more similar to us than imagined even a decade ago. But did they have anything like modern speech and language? And if so, what are the implications for understanding present-day linguistic diversity? The MPI for Psycholinguistics researchers Dan Dediu and Stephen C. Levinson argue in their paper in Frontiers in Language Sciences that modern language and speech can be traced back to the last common ancestor we shared with the Neandertals roughly half a million years ago.

The Neandertals have fascinated both the academic world and the general public ever since their discovery almost 200 years ago. Initially thought to be subhuman brutes incapable of anything but the most primitive of grunts, they were a successful form of humanity inhabiting vast swathes of western Eurasia for several hundreds of thousands of years, during harsh ages and milder interglacial periods. We knew that they were our closest cousins, sharing a common ancestor with us around half a million years ago (probably Homo heidelbergensis), but it was unclear what their cognitive capacities were like, or why modern humans succeeded in replacing them after thousands of years of cohabitation. Recently, due to new palaeoanthropological and archaeological discoveries and the reassessment of older data, but especially to the availability of ancient DNA, we have started to realise that their fate was much more intertwined with ours and that, far from being slow brutes, their cognitive capacities and culture were comparable to ours.

Dediu and Levinson review all these strands of literature and argue that essentially modern language and speech are an ancient feature of our lineage dating back at least to the most recent ancestor we shared with the Neandertals and the Denisovans (another form of humanity known mostly from their genome). Their interpretation of the intrinsically ambig
'/>"/>

Contact: Dan Dediu
Dan.Dediu@mpi.nl
31-243-521-188
Max-Planck-Gesellschaft
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:8/27/2014)... may not be getting effective doses of the HIV ... The initial dosing studies, completed before the drug was ... a protein that is key to removing maraviroc from ... maximum levels of the protein including nearly half ... their bodies compared to those who lack the protein ...
(Date:8/27/2014)... found in forests has created a thriving habitat for ... new University of Georgia study has found. , Japanese ... the early 1900s, is one of the most pervasive ... dozen states in the past century, particularly in the ... can survive in widely diverse ecosystems and has been ...
(Date:8/27/2014)... entering what is described by the Volunteer Wildfire Services ... Eastern Cape provincial government warned residents in certain parts ... and veld fires. A high veld fire danger ... the coast in the Great Kei and Mnquma area. ... during thunderstorms. The thunderstorms bring lightning strikes and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Dosage of HIV drug may be ineffective for half of African-Americans 2More wolf spiders feasting on American toads due to invasive grass, UGA study shows 2More wolf spiders feasting on American toads due to invasive grass, UGA study shows 3
... reporting dramatic new real-world evidence supporting the idea that ... It appears in a new study showing a connection ... stored drinking water, and health in households in a ... Environmental Science & Technology , a semi-monthly journal. ...
... , Menlo Park, Calif. The U.S. Department of ... of the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS), the world,s ... laser at the laboratory. The LCLS, which began operation ... laser light which are already providing new insights into ...
... project of the European Union has, in addition to the ... of stakeholders interested in making healthier cereal foods as part ... continue the activities and work of the HEALTHGRAIN project which ... Sweden. The HEALTHGRAIN Forum will be the future platform ...
Cached Biology News:First X-ray laser's early success brings approval for next-phase facility 2The HEALTHGRAIN Forum will work for cereal foods and health 2
(Date:8/28/2014)... 2014 A new market research ... is available from Strategic Consulting, Inc., the leading ... Microbiology Market Review, Fourth Edition: Global Review of ... tracks and compares microbiology test volumes, market values ... and Asia, and forecasts future volumes and market ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... PrimeSource Building Products, Inc., a ... SoundConnect to support their communication needs with ... web conferencing platform GlobalMeet powered by SoundConnect. The ... SoundConnect delivers award winning “results driven” business ... will be utilizing GlobalMeet powered by SoundConnect ...
(Date:8/28/2014)... August 28, 2014 Whitehouse Laboratories is ... term partnership with PTI Inspection Systems that ... state of the art leak testing method development and ... instruments currently available. As part of this agreement, Whitehouse ... Voltage Leak Detection Instrument developed and manufactured by ...
(Date:8/27/2014)... Green & Grow Inc. (GGI) has ... and secured Otter Capital as a significant new partner. ... of GGI’s Agriplier™ technology, building on recent compelling field ... our first meeting, we have been impressed with Otter ... said Alan Sobba, President and CEO of GGI. “We ...
Breaking Biology Technology:2 Billion Industrial Microbiology Tests Conducted for Product Quality and Safety Worldwide 22 Billion Industrial Microbiology Tests Conducted for Product Quality and Safety Worldwide 3PrimeSource Chooses SoundConnect as Collaboration Provider 2Whitehouse Labs Renews Partnership with PTI Inspection Systems 2Whitehouse Labs Renews Partnership with PTI Inspection Systems 3Green & Grow Inc. Secures $6M Series B Funding from Otter Capital 2Green & Grow Inc. Secures $6M Series B Funding from Otter Capital 3
... Calif., June 5 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ - BioMarin Pharmaceutical,Inc. (Nasdaq ... its third,enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) for the treatment ... BioMarin plans to initiate a Phase,1/2 clinical trial ... two MPS drugs on the market, we plan ...
... ) notes that FDA has published a notice of a ... to,be held on July 23, 2008. The Committee will address ... " ... presentations from the Office of Generic Drugs (OGD) ... treat gastrointestinal (GI) conditions ... " For over ...
... Will be Presented at the American Society for Mass ... 56th ASMS Conference in Denver, June ... Inc.,(Nasdaq: BNVI ) today announced that it has ... platform that allows for the rapid, specific, sensitive,automated quantification ...
Cached Biology Technology:BioMarin Announces Program for ERT for Treatment of MPS IVA - Morquio A Syndrome 2BioMarin Announces Program for ERT for Treatment of MPS IVA - Morquio A Syndrome 3BioMarin Announces Program for ERT for Treatment of MPS IVA - Morquio A Syndrome 4Viropharma Comments On Upcoming FDA Advisory Committee Meeting 2Viropharma Comments On Upcoming FDA Advisory Committee Meeting 3Bionovo Develops a High Throughput LC-MS/MS Method for Simultaneous Quantification of Multiple Bioactive Compounds 2Bionovo Develops a High Throughput LC-MS/MS Method for Simultaneous Quantification of Multiple Bioactive Compounds 3
Metamine is an autonomous data mining tool that extends the capabilities of conventional research teams. It is a proactive agent that searches for significant results buried within the GeNet data rep...
Compound(s) tested through a broad panel of 38 ligand binding and enzyme assays targeting the Central Nervous System. Used to determine selecitivty and potential CNS-Side Effect liabilities of compo...
... Endogens Screening Sets contain the ... develop five colorimetric sandwich ELISA plates ... in 100 l/well of cell culture ... and Detection Antibodies, Recombinant Standard (5 ...
... organic acid analysis standard is ... organic salts; molecular weights range ... standard is provided for use ... and the organic acid analysis ...
Biology Products: