HUFS Professor Rhee Seong-Ha and Ph.D. Ahn Kyu-Dong of English Linguistics & Language Technology (ELLT) are included in the author list of a scientific paper published in Nature, the world’s leading science journal. They participated in the Archaeolinguistic Research Group led by Professor Martine Robbeets of the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History. After a large-scale multidisciplinary research on the dispersal of Transeurasian languages, the research group published a research paper entitled “Triangulation Supports Agricultural Spread of Transeurasian languages” in Nature with their names listed as co-authors.
Transeurasian languages belong to a vast language family that contains the Korean, Japanese, Tungusic, Mongolian, and Turkic languages. These languages are spoken across a wide region of Eurasia from Korea and Japan in eastern Asia to Siberia and Turkey in the West. Until now, their origins and spread were subject to great debate because there was not clear evidence to conclude the correlations between population movements and the spread of crops and the spread of languages. This research is particularly meaningful in that it used a methodological triangulation that combines archaeology, archaeological genetics, and historical linguistics, proving that the spread of the languages was spurred by the spread of crops.
Professor Rhee said of the key achievement of this research, “It is immensely significant in that it discovered the origins, dates, and speakers of Transeurasian languages.” He added, “It is all the more meaningful because I, as a member of the HUFS community, have made it to this achievement that brings joy to all HUFS members and also because this is what I have accomplished in close collaboration with my fellow researcher Ph.D. Ahn Kyu-Dong of our ELLT department.”
He went on to say, “This research is a great milestone in the history of linguistics, and I, as a linguist, feel rewarded and fulfilled about being a member of this landmark research. I also feel a great sense of pride that this research has highlighted the linguistic expertise of HUFS, highly recognized at home and abroad for its outstanding linguistic research and education, once again on the global stage.”