James Hurford

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James R. Hurford is the author of several books on linguistics and evolutionary linguistics.

He is General Editor of Oxford Studies in the Evolution of Language,[1] he is also a member of the Research Unit in Language Evolution and Computation at the University of Edinburgh where he is an emeritus professor.

He also helps organize the series of International Conferences on the Evolution of Language[2]

Hurford was elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 2015.[3]


  • 2014 The Origins of Language: A Slim Guide
  • 2011 The Origins of Grammar: Language in the Light of Evolution
  • 2007 The Origins of Meaning: Language in the Light of Evolution[5]
  • 1994 Grammar: a Student's Guide
  • 1987 Language and Number: the emergence of a cognitive system
  • 1983 Semantics: a Coursebook
  • 1975 The Linguistic Theory of Numerals

As Editor:

  • 2000 The Evolutionary Emergence of Language: Social function and the origins of linguistic form, edited by Chris Knight, Michael Studdert-Kennedy and James R Hurford
  • 1998 Approaches to the Evolution of Language: social and cognitive bases, edited by James R Hurford, Michael Studdert-Kennedy and Chris Knight.