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Re: Morse Code, Silbo and Whistled languages

From:Glenn Alexander <glenalec@...>
Date:Friday, January 7, 2005, 3:01
On Fri, 7 Jan 2005 03:30, Gary Shannon wrote:
> All this led me to wonder about a language (from some > alien civilization, obviously) devised by a > civilization that had no vocal chords, but carried > around little two-tone or three-tone penny whistles to > talk with.
An interesting point would be how did a species that cannot 'talk' develop the brain parts for linguistics. Of course, they could have evolved language using something entirely different, such as drumming on part of their bodies (like Triffids) and then switched to whistles later as more effective. Or their language was initaly hissing or flatulating(?), which could well lead to use of wind instruments providing a much broader range of phonemes. Possibly the whistles could have started off as musical instruments before their use as a general linguistic tool developed. As for conculture: I imagine the term (and act of) "Throwing away/down one's whistle" might be significant. As could "swallowing the whistle", "biting the whistle" and "speaking through someone else's whistle". Possibly also a reference to an "excretory oriface whistle" depending on their biology and general attitude to gaseous bodily waste. -------------------------------------------------------- Glenn Alexander (B.Teach, B.Ed Major IT Education, University of Wollongong Australia) Home site: Jabber: glenalec @ I use GNU/Linux: / from Debian: -------------------------------------------------------- Fight software piracy. Use GNU! [ ] --------------------------------------------------------