Dana Nutter wrote: > And there is much more diversity in the languages of Asia and > Africa. You have many completely different language families > represented where Europe is mostly just the three big braches > (Romance, Germanic and Slavic) of IE. Note that geographically Europe is also much smaller than Asia and Africa. It's only about 1/4 of Asia and 1/3 of Africa. > The other thing is in some of these places, they don't really > have "languages" so much as a continuum of dialects that range > in their levels of mutal intelligibility. Basically that's the situation in Europe too, but there are certain privileged standard varieties that ensure mutual intelligibility through literature and mass media.