How many languages are spoken in the world?

by | Mar 9, 2017


There about 7,000 languages spoken on Earth!  Here are some crazy interesting facts about languages:

  • Half the world’s population speaks one of ten languages.  These most spoken languages, in order of number of speakers are:

-Chinese (1.2 Billion)
-Spanish (400 Million)
-English (360 Million)
-Hindi (300 Million)
-Arabic (250 Million)
-Portuguese (210 Million)
-Bengali (170 Million)
-Russian (170 Million)
-Japanese (130 Million)
-Punjabi (100 Million)

  • Only 230 Languages are spoken in Europe as compared with nearly 2,200 in Asia.
  • The highest concentration of languages is in Papua New Guinea where 832 languages are spoken among its 3.9 Million inhabitants.
  • Linguists theorize that thousands of years ago there were substantially fewer languages, but as humans migrated new languages arose.  More recently, the number of languages has been decreasing.
  • English is spoken in the greatest number of countries – 101.  Spanish and French are also spoken in many countries, reflecting the imperial nature of the mother country of those languages. English is an official language of 35 countries – including Belize!
  • English is the most studied foreign language in the world (meaning it is the most common second language learned). Around 1.5 Billion people  are/have learned English.



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