> Sounds like the legend of the Tower of Babel and
> the other Biblical ideas about the origins of
> language might not be all that far off from the
> truth, at least metaphorically.
Again, I think this is offtopic for this forum.
There is a Nostratic forum for this topic that you
may wish to join, although I sadly no longer feel
that I can recommend it to anyone since the debates
have become plagued with nonsensical pseudoscience
as seems to be too often the case with Nostratic.
Actually, Nostratic is *not* meant to be the ancestor
of all language groups around the world. Only a very
tiny subset of them. Chinese, for example, is spoken
by millions of people but it is not considered to
be Nostratic. Neither are Swahili and related Bantu
languages. Linking Nostratic to the Tower of Babel
legend is way off the mark.
As Patrick has said, Allan Bomhard is one of the
foremost authors in the Nostratic field so far,
however I think he is also the most sensible so far
because he undoes some of the flaws inherent in
the earlier works by Illich-Svitych and others.
Being one who grew up in a religious household with
man antiquated ideas about language origins, I urge
people to be cautious about assuming direct links
because it has been a source of confusion in the past.
In my opinion, the origin of communication goes back
to the Big Bang, 12 billion years ago :) The origin
of gestural communication goes back millions of
years. The origin of _vocal_ communication complete
with a standardized grammatical system goes back
about hundreds of thousands of years. The origin
of the common language (aka "Proto-World") that begat
all known modern languages probably occured only
circa 80,000 BCE. Nostratic is merely dated to 15,000
BCE and IE is only 4000 BCE. That's the timescale
that I understand.
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