Vote 2020 graphic
Everything you need to know about and expect during
the most important election of our lifetimes

Two Linguists Have Discovered a Completely Unique, Reality-Shifting Language in India

Illustration for article titled Two Linguists Have Discovered a Completely Unique, Reality-Shifting Language in India

Every two weeks, the last person capable of fluently speaking one of humankind's over 6,000 languages dies. Let that sink in. Then, consider that two linguists have discovered a new one—unlike any other ever encountered in history.

Advertisement

The language, called Koro, was found within a tiny community of around 800 inhabitants of the Himalayan foothills—nestled in a region where 120 other dialects are already in use. The discovery of Koro is of enormous importance to linguists for reasons beyond its novelty. Koro sounds and is structured like no other language on earth, giving scientists an opportunity to interact with a population whose conception of the world is, because of the words they use, fundamentally different from the rest of us. Koro speakers "uniquely code knowledge of the natural world in ways that cannot be translated into a major language," explains Dr. Gregory Anderson, one of the linguists behind the breakthrough. [WSJ]

Advertisement

Photo by rajkumar1220

Share This Story

Get our newsletter

DISCUSSION

"Every two weeks, the last person capable of fluently speaking one of humankind's over 6,000 languages dies".

Good. If we all spoke one language, the benefits in terms of peace, understanding, communication, and economic growth would be tremendous. The sooner we're down to one, the better.