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Paperback. Pub Date :2006-09-18 Pages: 688 Language: English Publisher: HarperPerennial An unusual and authoritative natural history of languages ??that narrates the ways in which one language has superseded or outlasted another at different times in history.The story of the world in the last five thousand years is above all the story of its languages. Some shared language is what binds any community together. and makes possible both the living of a common history and the telling of it.Yet the history of the worlds great languages . has rarely been examined Empires of the Word is the first to bring together the tales in all their glorious variety: the amazing innovations - in education. culture and diplomacy - devised by speakers in the Middle East; the uncanny resilience of Chinese throughout twenty centuries of invasions; the progress of Sanskrit from north India to Java a...