Re: Did man originally speak a single language?

Karen G. Jensen (
Wed, 4 Nov 1998 09:46:24 -0600

>At 02:04 PM 11/1/98 -0600, Karen G. Jensen wrote:

>>>Glenn R. Morton wrote:
>>>> The Bible says that there was an original language that all men spoke.
>>Yes. But I'd expect _today's_ language families to be profoundly different,
>>in light of Genesis 11:7.
>>With some cognates by (post-Babel) contact.
>But the problem we have is that linguists are on the verge of connecting
>the world's languages via this type of analysis. Like it or not, we are
>going to have to deal with the results of research even if we don't like
>its effect on our theology.

As I read it, the results of this research are showing similarities in a
small number of words such as who, what, two, water, digit, arm, knee,
hair, and a few others including mama which is a natural first sound for an
infant's mouth.

These may be interpreted as

- vestiges of an original language

- link-words that might be expected in cross-cultural communications

- a combination of communications, coincidence, natural sounds, etc.

- evidence that, on the whole, the language families are not related

- support for one or more other linguistic theories

This is very interesting research! Right now there is excitement about
that first option, even though the vast majority of words do not match. We
will see what future research shows.

Who knows which interpretation accords with the real truth?