Many second language learners notice similarities between their spoken language and learner language. This often makes language learning easier, for instance if you speak English, you will find it easier to pick up Italian than you might Mandarin. The reason behind this is that many languages belong to a language group; Indo-European languages.Indo-European Languages are spoken globally by over three billion people, just under one thousand languages make up this group. There are ten major sub categories of languages that fall under this heading. The earliest is Sanskrit, with documented use of language dating from the third millennium BC. Other major categories include Germanic languages including English, Italic languages including Latin and Italian and the Indo-Iranian languages.
Similarities between Indian and European languages were first documented by missionaries in the 16th century who noticed the similarity between Indian with Greek and Latin. By the 17th century a theory evolved among scholars that a primitive universal language was spoken hundreds of years ago, from which modern languages are derived.
Linguists have devised what is known as a tree model. This is where the evolution of a language is traced back to its original, known as a proto-language, which is placed at the top of the tree. From here, languages which are derived from the proto-language are known as daughter languages. At one time, all languages from the indo-European group would likely have evolved form one common proto-language. Some of these daughter languages are also identified as proto-languages for further daughter languages.
Linguists have made many attempts over the last hundred years to reconstruct the proto-indo-european language, which is known within linguistics as PIE. Although there are many reconstructions, linguists have not reached a consensus over what such a language might look and sound like; opinions on this matter are diverse within the field. Some linguists have gone as far as to reconstruct stories and fables in PIE, you can find these easily on the internet. The King and The God is one such attempt.
It is proposed that native speakers of Indo-European languages have a genetic link, that is a common ancestor somewhere along the line from whence these languages started developing.
Of the twenty most spoken languages in the world, twelve of these belong to the Indo-European Languages. They include; Spanish, English, Hindi, Portugese, Bengali, Russian, German, Marathi, French, Italian, Punjabi and Urdu.