Learning a foreign language is synonymous with exploring a foreign culture, it is opening doors to the study of the origins and roots of a foreign civilization. Learning a language can enrich you as a human being, since it also brings along knowledge of new traditions and customs. Hence, bringing a fresh perspective to life itself.
Different Languages of the World
Here is a list of some of the languages spoken around the world. In case you are still contemplating the thought of learning a foreign language, then this information might help you to make up your mind.
Well, if you thought English was the most widely spoken native language in this world, then here is a reality check - Chinese Mandarin is the most widely spoken native language in the world. Well, let aside the debate about which language is the most popular, the important thing to know is that every language is intricate and unique.
Mandarin, which literally means simplified Chinese or Traditional Chinese, is a category of Chinese dialect and is one of the most widely spoken native languages in the world.
Mandarin is a stress-timed language, which means that the syllables in this language may last different amounts of time, but there is a fairly constant amount of time between consecutive stressed syllables. The writing system for Mandarin is based on a set of written symbols like all the forms of Chinese languages.
English is a language that belongs to the branch of West Germanic languages, and has its origins in England. English is the first language for people in the United Kingdom, the United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, and the Caribbean. It is used as the official language in commonwealth countries and many international organizations as well.
French belongs to a branch of the Indo-European language family, known as the Romance languages, which are nothing but all languages descending from Latin. French is spoken around the world by around 118 million people as a native language, and by 180 to 260 million people as a second or third language.
French is spoken in 54 countries, including its country of origin - France. Many native speakers of French live in Canada, Switzerland, Belgium, Francophone Africa, Luxembourg, Monaco, and even in the United States.
Japanese is a language, related to the Ryukyuan languages and is spoken by over 130 million people in Japan and in the Japanese emigrant communities. It is the official language of Japan, Palau, and the island of Angaur. It is written with a combination of three different types of scripts: which are - kanji, and two syllabic scripts hiragana and katakana.
Hindi is an Indo-Aryan language, which is spoken in northern and central India and as defined by the Indian Constitution, it is one of the two official languages of communication, English being the second one. Almost 41% of India's population accounts for native Hindi speakers. The Urdu language is one its Persianized versions.
The German language, also known as Deutsch, is a West Germanic language which is related to and classified alongside English and Dutch. German, being one of the major languages of the world, is spoken by around 100 million native speakers and 80 million non-native speakers.
A majority of the German vocabulary is derived from the Germanic branch of the Indo-European language family. Some of the German words are also derived from Latin, Greek, and a small amount of words from French.
Hebrew is a Semitic language of the Afro-Asiatic language family and is spoken by more than seven million people in Israel. Hebrew is used for prayers in Jewish communities around the world. Hebrew is the mother tongue for the Samaritans.
Swahili is the first language of the Swahili people who inhabit numerous large stretches of the Indian Ocean coastline from Kenya to northern Mozambique, also including the Comoros Islands. Around 5-10 million people speak Swahili as their native language.
Swahili is also spoken in East Africa and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Swahili is the only language of African origin among the official working languages of the African Union.
Greek is an Indo-European language, spoken by 15 to 22 million people. The majority of the Greek-speaking population is in Greece and Cyprus. Like most Indo-European languages, Greek is also highly inflected; it is conventionally divided into five different periods - Mycenaean Greek, Classical Greek, Hellenistic Greek, Medieval Greek, and Modern Greek.
Polish is a West Slavic language, which is the official language of Poland. It is spoken in a uniform manner through most of Poland, and it has a regular orthography. The Polish vowel system is relatively simple, since it has only six oral and two nasal vowels.
Spanish, also known as español, is an Indo-European Romance language (language derived from Latin) that originated in northern Spain. This language gradually spread in the Kingdom of Castile and then evolved as the principal language of governance and trade.
With the expansion of the Spanish empire, it was taken to Africa, America, and Asia-Pacific. Today, around 322 to 400 million people speak Spanish as a native language.
Irish is a Goidelic language of the Indo-European language family, which is the national and first official language of Ireland. The Irish language has its origin in Ireland. However today, there exists a small minority of native Irish speakers in the Irish population. Irish is an official language of the European Union as well.
Korean is the official language of North Korea and South Korea. It is also one of the two official languages in the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture in China. There are about 78 million Korean speakers, with large groups in Australia, Japan, Brazil, Canada, China, and the United States.
Its classification is debated since some linguists classify it under the Altaic language family, while others consider it to be an isolate language.
The Hawaiian language is an Austronesian language, which is named after Hawaii, where it was developed. Hawaiian, along with English, is an official language of the State of Hawaii in the USA. There are also many Native American languages like the Cherokee language, Shawnee language, the Guarani language, or the Sioux language.
Portuguese is a Romance language, which originated in Spain and northern Portugal. Today, it is the official language of Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Portugal, São Tomé and Príncipe, and Mozambique. It is also one of the official languages of Equatorial Guinea, the Chinese special administrative region of Macau, and East Timor.
In addition to these languages, there exist many more languages that might be spoken around the globe. So try learning a new language and broaden the expanse of your knowledge!