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All species of hominid were/are capable of vocalization, so the important distinction here is between spoken language and simple noises. Archaic Homo sapiens are considered to be one of the first hominids to use language extensively. While it is likely that other species had common sounds specific to certain tasks, actions, or objects, there is little evidence that any earlier species used language to any great extent. Evidence points to archaic Homo sapiens being one of the first hominids to live in groups larger than fifty individuals; this, according to anthropologist Robin Dunbar, is an important size because it requires more communicative language and organizational skills. Without a common language, and the means to speak and teach it, the groups would quickly dissolve. Archaic Homo sapiens are functionally very similar to the modern strain, Homo sapiens sapiens, and even had similar brain size, so it is very possible that their speech was organized around root words and common language concepts.
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