Languages have been coming and going for thousands of years, but in recent times there has been less coming and a lot more going. When the world was still populated by hunter-gatherers，small，tightly knit(联系)groups developed their own patterns of speech independent of each other. Some language experts believe that 10,000 years ago, when the world had just five to ten million people, they spoke perhaps 12, 000 languages between them.
Soon afterwards, many of those people started settling down to become farmers, and their languages too became more settled and fewer in number. In recent centuries, trade, industrialisation, the development of the nation-state and the spread of universal compulsory education, especially globalisation and better communications in the past few decades, all have caused many languages to disappear, and dominant languages such as English，Spanish and Chinese are increasingly taking over.
At present, the world has about 6, 800 languages. The distribution of these languages is hugely uneven. The general rule is that mild zones have relatively few languages, often spoken by many people, while hot wet zones have lots, often spoken by small numbers. Europe has only around 200 languages; the Americas about 1, 000; Africa 2, 400; and Asia and the Pacific perhaps 3,200, of which Papua New Guinea alone accounts for well over 800.The median number(中位数) of speakers is mere 6,000, which that half the world's languages are spoken by fewer people than that.
Already well over 400 of the total of 6, 800 languages are close to extinction (消亡), with only a few elderly speakers left. Pick, at random, Busuu in Cameroon （eight remaining speakers), Chiapaneco in Mexico (150), Lipan Apache in the United States (two or three) or Wadjigu in Australia (one, with a question-mark): none of these seems to have much chance of survival.
28. What can we infer about languages in hunter-gatherer times?
A. They developed very fast
B. They were large in number
C. They had similar patterns
D. They were closely connected
29. Which of the following best explains "dominant" underlined in paragraph 2？
30. How many languages are spoken by less than 6,000 people at present？
A. About 6,800
B. About 3,400
C. About 2,400
D. About 1,200
31. What is the main idea of the text？
A. New languages will be created.
B. People's lifestyles are reflected in languages.
C. Human development results in fewer languages.
D. Geography determines language evolution.
1，B．本题属于推理判断题。根据题干信息languages in hunter-gatherer times，定位到第一段 When the world was still populated by hunter－ gatherers， small， tightly knit（联系） groups developed their own patterns of speech independent of each other处，其句意为：在狩猎的时代，狩猎团队各自形成了自己的语言模式，这会导致大量不同的语言，语言种类的的数量是巨大的，这B项They were large in number语义一致。.
2．C．本题属于词义猜测题．根据“词不离句，句不离段”，定位到 and dominant languages such as English， Spanish and Chinese are increasingly taking over处，such as English， Spanish and Chinese are increasingly taking over就是对dominant languages的例证，再结合常识可知，现在占据统治地位的语言有英语、西班牙语和汉语。 dominant意为应该为”统治的，强大的”，故选C.
ages are spoken by less than 6,000 people at present定位到 At present， the world has about6，800 languages及 The median number（中位数） of speakers is a mere6，000，Which means that half the world＇ s languages are spoken by fewer people than that处，其句意为：世界上的仅仅不到6000人却说的语言占到一半的世界语言，世界所有的语言大约有6800种。而6800的二分之一为3400，故选B.
目前，世界上大约有6，800种语言。这些语言的分布非常不均衡。一般的规则是，温和的地区通常由许多人讲的语言相对较少。 而湿热区经常少数人讲大多数语言。欧洲只有大约200种语言；美洲大约有1，000种；非洲有2，400种；亚洲和太平洋也许有3，200种语言，其中包括巴布亚新几内亚。 仅几内亚一国就有超过800年的人口，而说话人的中的人数仅为6，000人，这意味着世界上有一半的语言是由比这更少的人说的。