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Spanish - 4th Most Spoken Language in the World - Discover the others...
Thursday, December 2, 2021 @ 1:00 PM

What are the most widely spoken languages ​​on planet Earth? The initial ranking is fairly easy to guess. English and Chinese win, with their 1.1 billion speakers for each group. Following is Hindi, 615 million thanks to being one of the most populous countries in the world. Spanish is close behind with 534 million, French remains stagnant at 279, standard Arabic with 273, and so on and so on...

But almost more interesting than this is to be able to contemplate, with a single glance, the list of scopes, ramifications and genealogies of the languages ​​of the first positions. This evolutionary diagram has been created by Wordtips, developers of language-related tools for when you need to expand vocabulary or improve your Scrabble game. The legend of this map is comprised of the eleven main families and their subsequent branches (only Indo-European has up to 59) until reaching each language; the sum of native and total speakers of each language and the final ranking of the number of speakers.

Here are some initial and surprising observations: while most families end up in a hodgepodge of splits, Hungarian, Japanese and Korean are each their own cultural island. Despite being the language with the most total speakers within the entire Afro-Asian family, Modern Standard Arabic is one of the very few that lacks native speakers, caused by being a vehicular device to maintain a series of common registers in the Arab world (It is the same for the Filipino and the Nigerian Pidgin).

Also, for example, you can see how Greek has remained practically involutional for thousands of years, while the other classic pillar of Western civilization, Latin, found in romance a way to emerge into a multitude of categories that have been turned into things as varied as French and Romanian.

Despite the details of the graph, it does not reflect even one-hundredth of all the languages ​​spoken on the planet: it is estimated that there are around 7,097 different languages, although 90% of them are spoken by communities of less than 100,000 inhabitants.

 



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4 Comments


Gordon said:
Saturday, December 4, 2021 @ 8:45 AM

Very interesting.....


Scott Morris said:
Saturday, December 4, 2021 @ 6:56 PM

You alternate between "Most SPOKEN languages" and "Most WIDELY SPOKEN languages"!
I suspect Chinese is not very widely spoken, yet appears almost equal to THE most widely spoken language, English! The same applies to Hindi! Outside of India, Hindi probably barely makes an impact. So I suggest Spanish is the second most WIDELY-SPOKEN language, followed by French.



Tony Davison said:
Saturday, December 4, 2021 @ 8:37 PM

French is not even in the top ten. It is widely spoken because of France's colonial past, as is also the case with English. However, there are far more people speaking Portuguese than French and there are Portuguese speaking countries in South America, Africa and Asia.


Claudio said:
Sunday, December 5, 2021 @ 12:04 AM

Very interesting, thank you. Do you have an idea about the basque language, euskara? Where is that at the chart?


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