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Linguists discover new language spoken by 350 people: Here's how it sounds

Linguists discover new language spoken by 350 people: Here's how it sounds What is known about the new language (photo: Freepik)

Linguists have documented the emergence of a new language that began to develop in the remote village of Ladgman in northern Australia. The settlement is predominantly inhabited by the Warlpiri people, writes IFL Science.

What we know about new language

Light Warlpiri or Warlpiri Rampaku is a language that appeared as a result of blending various elements of Standard Australian English with Warlpiri, an Aboriginal language spoken by several thousand indigenous people in northern Australia, and Kriol, an English creole language developed in the late 19th to early 20th centuries.

The language originated in the 1970s and 1980s. This phenomenon was studied by Australian National University linguistics professor Carmel O'Shannessy, who first reported the new language in 2005.

"For a mixed language to develop you have to have bilinguals or multilinguals, who code-switch a lot, in a very systematic pattern, and who have some kind of social reason to create their own way of speaking," O'Shannessy said.

Over the years, the language system continued to develop naturally and even became the mother tongue of some people in the village of Lajaman. Even traditional Warlpiri is considered endangered, with only 4,000 people speaking it, while "light Warlpiri" is spoken by about 350 people, most of whom are under the age of 40.

The village of Lajaman is located 110 km from the nearest community, and 560 km from the nearest significant town. Scientists believe that has been a factor in the emergence of the new language.

In most languages, it is rare to hear the structures of the verb system and the noun system from different, distant languages. However, in light Warlpiri the verbs are mostly from English or Creole, while most of the other grammatical components in the sentence originate from Warlpiri.

In this video, you can hear a girl telling a story about a monster in the light Warlpiri language.

Earlier we wrote about the fact that archaeologists found a secret and lost language that existed 3000 years ago .