Baboons make five vowel-like sounds just like humans: Discovery could mean the origin of speech is much older than first thought
Human speech is thought to have come about relatively recently, within the last 70,000 to 100,000 years.
Because of this, there has been little research into the links between the sounds made by non-human primates and the way we speak.
But a new study has shown baboons can make five of the vowel noises thought unique to humans, meaning the origin of language could stretch back much older than we thought - to 25 million years ago.
ORIGINS OF SPEECH The results showed baboons produce five sounds that have important similarities with the vowels of human speech.
This goes against a prevalent... read more
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