Linguistic diversity of the Americas can be reconciled with a recent colonization.

  title={Linguistic diversity of the Americas can be reconciled with a recent colonization.},
  author={Daniel Nettle},
  journal={Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America},
  volume={96 6},
  • D. Nettle
  • Published 16 March 1999
  • Economics
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
The Americas harbor a very great diversity of indigenous language stocks, many more than are found in any other continent. J. Nichols [(1990) Language 66, 475-521] has argued that this diversity indicates a great time depth of in situ evolution. She thus infers that the colonization of the Americas must have begun around 35,000 years ago. This estimate is much earlier than the date for which there is strong archaeological support, which does not much exceed 12,000 years. Nichols' assumption is… 

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