What is Esperanto?

by | Jan 29, 2018


A prior IFOD discussed the amazing fact that about 7,000 languages are currently spoken on earth – read more about that here: IFOD – How Many Languages Spoken

One such language is in a league of its own: Esperanto.

Esperanto was created in the 19th century by Ludwik Lejzer Zamenhof, a Polish Ophthalmologist, with the goal of it being a universal second language. The language has largely European/romance language roots and was designed to be easy to learn. The goal is not for Esperanto to be a primary language, but rather a second language that people would learn so that everyone could communicate with everyone else regardless of primary language or culture.  Great idea. Esperanto is supposedly easier to learn than most languages due to its phonetic spelling, gender-free nouns and a mere sixteen grammatical rules that are exception-free (unlike English which is notoriously hard to learn given its sporadic silent letters and slippery grammatical rules).

Currently, there are about 2 million speakers of Esperanto spanning about 100 countries, making it it is the most widely spoken constructed language in the world. Of the 2 million speakers, about 1,000 grew up speaking Esperanto in their home and the other 1.99 million intentionally learned Esperanto. Notably, billionaire George Soros is one of the 1,000 native Esperanto speakers.

More on Esperanto: esperanto.org

Examples of Esperanto words:






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