The curious reason humans could not say the word ‘farming’ before it even existed

The curious reason humans could not say the word 'farming' before it even existed

Arguments over the diets of our paleolithic ancestors have raged for decades, but one thing is now certain, if any were vegetarian, they couldn’t have said so.

New research into the biting and phonetic ability of stone age humans has found that until the birth of farming some 10,000-years-ago, people could not pronounce the letters ‘v’ or ‘f’ – making the word ‘farming’ also a linguistic impossibility before the advent of agriculture. 

And when things went wrong for our prehistoric forebears they definitely could not have used ‘the f-word.’

The sounds, known as fricatives and labiodentals, can only be produced when the lower lip pushes against the upper teeth to form a slight hissing sound.

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