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Studies show that some of the basic words in our vocabularies share important characteristics, no matter the language being spoken

September 14, 2016
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EarthIn English we say “nose”, the French say “nez” and Germans pronounce it “nase.” The words that different cultures use to describe the same objects or concepts might be more similar than we realize.

That’s the conclusion of a statistical analysis of thousands of languages, which concluded that some of the most basic words in our vocabularies share important characteristics, no matter the language being spoken.

The findings contradict a basic assumption in linguistics: that the origin of our words is largely arbitrary. There are exceptions to this rule of course, but by and large, it is commonly held that the meaning of a word has no bearing on the sounds which form it.

Read more of this article by Nathaniel Scharping at http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/d-brief/2016/09/13/sounds-and-meaning-link-world-langauges/#.V9i5q_krLZ5

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