The Queen of Languages: Why English is the Most Widely Spoken Language in the World
Every year, more and more people are learning English, and while it may seem like it’s only spoken in the U.S., that’s actually not the case at all! In fact, over 1 billion people speak English worldwide, and there are many reasons why it’s become the most widely spoken language in the world today. Here are a few of them.
Reasons why English is the most widely spoken language
A global leader, it is spoken by around 3 billion people worldwide and understood by billions more. It has its origins in West Germanic dialects brought to Britain by Germanic settlers from northwestern Germany and today boasts countless dialects and sub-varieties.
Do other countries teach their native language as a second language?
Learning a second language isn’t just helpful for your career—it also gives you a deeper appreciation for different cultures. If you want to learn another language, it might be tempting to go out and find classes right away. However, knowing another culture’s native tongue can also help you understand how they see things differently.
For example, some languages use gender-specific pronouns when referring to people (e.g., he or she), while others don’t (e.g., Spanish). As such, it may be easier for someone who speaks Spanish as their first language to empathize with someone who identifies as transgender than someone who only speaks English as their first language.
Secrets of how the British created it.
To start, they took a language that was already thriving—Latin—and changed it by adding words from other languages. In fact, it’s been suggested that English has up to three times as many foreign loanwords as French or German!
What do other countries think about us Americans knowing their language?
When Americans have a conversation with someone from another country, they will often try to speak their language. This can be endearing, but it’s not necessary. A lot of people on foreign soil are impressed when Americans try to speak their language and some even feel honored, as if you want to learn about them and learn their culture. If you ask me I think that’s pretty cool, so don’t be afraid to give it a shot.
Where does Spanish fit into this?
There are several other languages that come close to rivaling English as a global language. For example, Spanish and Chinese are spoken by over 400 million people each. But what sets English apart from these other two is its ability to seamlessly switch between countries and ethnicities.
How many people speak Chinese around the world?
The world’s most spoken language, Mandarin Chinese, has nearly 1.2 billion native speakers. Put another way, roughly 16% of all people on Earth can converse fluently in Mandarin Chinese. That’s a lot. It’s almost twice as many as Spanish (at 700 million), and four times more than English (at 360 million). French comes next at around 220 million speakers worldwide and there are roughly 100 million native German speakers out there too.
How many people speak Hindi?
Hindi, spoken by approximately 50 million people, is India’s national language. It’s also one of India’s 22 official languages, but it isn’t used much outside its native borders. Just how many people speak Hindi worldwide? According to estimates based on historical records, approximately 100 million people speak some amount of Hindi. However, these numbers are rapidly rising as more and more international communities and countries begin integrating Hindi into their education systems.