Timeline Story

Animal Vocabulary: Thousands of Words (The Great Apes)

Animal Vocabulary: Thousands of Words (The Great Apes)

From Year 0 (BCE/CE): -15000000
Post Date: 07/06/0000 4:07 PM

Since before the orangutan branched about 12 million years ago, all the great ape species had a vocabulary—signals, gestures, grunts, and screams—in various contexts, potentially ranging into the thousands. These early apes communicated with not only a wide variety of sounds and gestures but also different levels or gradations of these signals. For instance, one type of scream might indicate danger from above, while another might signal danger on the ground. Depending on the situation, the scream could represent danger at a distance, an immediate personal threat, approaching danger, or imminent danger. Similarly, the same sound could have variations to signal that an attack is in progress or that one just occurred.

Imagined Image: Found in Europe, Rudapithecus hungaricus likely lived from about 12 to 10 million years ago but was not likely our direct-line ancestor. It likely had a vocabulary similar to orangutans today, ranging into the thousands of gestures, grunts, and screams in various contexts

Weekly Wisdom Builder
This week’s 4-minute brain boost…
July 7, 2024 Edition
Time Left: 

Email Notification
Subscribe to our Weekly Wisdom BuilderIt’s Free! No ads! No catches! One email each Monday, use it as your weekly to-do checklist! Delete it after you’ve pondered your weekly 4 minute brain boost.

Exactly what the world needs RIGHT NOW!

Wisdom at the crossroads of knowledge.

Wisdom emerges from the consistent exploration of the intersections of philosophy, science, critical thinking, and history.

Get the full story…

These timeline stories are part of my Visual Insights page, where our best ideas come alive. Dive into these timelines to gain a broader perspective, as found in the Stoic practice of the “view from above.” For a deeper exploration of our best ideas beyond learning by meme, check out my new book…

Coming December 2024: Immerse yourself in knowledge, not snippets.

30 Philosophers: A New Look at Timeless Ideas

Placeholder image.

by Mike Prestwood (Author)
Dive deeper than headlines and memes and explore the minds of the greatest thinkers. Nothing compares to the depth and insight gained from the immersive experience of a book.
Beyond the Buzz: Uncover lasting knowledge!
  • Discover how 30 influential philosophers shaped our understanding of the world.
  • Explore the concepts that continue to influence science, art, and culture today.
  • Get your copy now and start thinking like the greatest minds in history!

Uncover the Timeless Wisdom of 30 Philosophers!

divider-red-swirls1.png

Scroll to Top