Ultraconserved words point to deep language ancestry across Eurasia

@article{Pagel2013UltraconservedWP,
  title={Ultraconserved words point to deep language ancestry across Eurasia},
  author={M. Pagel and Q. Atkinson and Andreea S Calude and A. Meade},
  journal={Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences},
  year={2013},
  volume={110},
  pages={8471 - 8476}
}
The search for ever deeper relationships among the World’s languages is bedeviled by the fact that most words evolve too rapidly to preserve evidence of their ancestry beyond 5,000 to 9,000 y. On the other hand, quantitative modeling indicates that some “ultraconserved” words exist that might be used to find evidence for deep linguistic relationships beyond that time barrier. Here we use a statistical model, which takes into account the frequency with which words are used in common everyday… Expand

Figures, Tables, and Topics from this paper

Short, frequent words are more likely to appear genetically related by chance
Support for linguistic macrofamilies from weighted sequence alignment
  • G. Jäger
  • Computer Science, Medicine
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
  • 2015
Tracing the roots of syntax with Bayesian phylogenetics
Human population history revealed by a supertree approach
...
1
2
3
4
5
...

References

SHOWING 1-10 OF 42 REFERENCES
Frequency of word-use predicts rates of lexical evolution throughout Indo-European history
Phylogenetic Methods and the Prehistory of Languages
Language in the Americas
Human language as a culturally transmitted replicator
  • M. Pagel
  • Biology, Medicine
  • Nature Reviews Genetics
  • 2009
How do we use language? Shared patterns in the frequency of word use across 17 world languages
Reconstructing Indian Population History
On the Origin of Language
Language Classification: History and Method
...
1
2
3
4
5
...