Chimpanzeesign language follows the same rules as human speech, scientists find
Experts made the discovery after studying videos of wild chimps living in Uganda’s Budongo Forest Reserve.
Like other great apes, chimpanzees lack the ability to speak but make use of meaningful gestures, much like deaf people signing to each other.
The study found that chimp gestures are underpinned by mathematical patterns, or linguistic laws, similar to those seen in human language.
The team from the University of Roehampton focused on two particular rules known to apply across the board of human languages.
One was Zipf’s law of abbreviation, which predicts that more commonly used words tend to be shorter.