Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Once Again, The Caveman Speaks

Neanderthals and human evolution are becoming frequent topics on my blog, particularly because I've been keeping up with a couple of science websites, watching for news in paleontology. This latest article is very interesting to me, though probably an absurd waste of time to others.

A professor at Florida Atlantic University used fossils to recreate the vocal tract of Neanderthals. Given these parameters, he recreated what Neanderthal speech may have sounded like. Below is an audio clip of the vowel 'e.' (BTW, they sound like leprechauns! Happy St. Patrick's Day!) Because of differences in the anatomy of the vocal tract, Neanderthals did not have the full range of modern human speech. Neanderthals were limited to fewer speech sounds, so they likely did not have the linguistic capacity Cro-Magnons did.

Still, they likely spoke.


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