The First Language

The Egyptians used to believe that they were the oldest race of mankind.  However, one of their pharoahs, Psammetichus, was of an experimental bent, and decided to test this theory in the following way.  He took two newborn children, and placed them under the care of a goatherd, who was ordered to care for the children, and bring them food and milk as they needed, but was in no way to speak around them.

Whichever language the children first spoke naturally, without being taught, would be the ancestral, intrinsic language of mankind, and that race that oldest race of man.

The goatherd did as he was commanded for two years, until one day he entered the hut where he raised the children.  They came to him crying “Bekos!  Bekos!”  The goatherd waiting until he was certain that they had said the word intentionally and with meaning and purpose, and when he was sure, he returned to the pharoah and told him what he had heard.

Psammetichus than inquired to which language the word “bekos” belonged, and it was found to be the Phyrgian word for bread.  From then on, the Egyptians considered the Phrygians, inhabitants of modern-day Turkey, to be the oldest race of mankind.

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