What Are The Top 5 Languages Spoken Throughout The World?

African Languages Italian
Asian Languages Latin
Bilingual Education/ESL Russian
French Spanish

No. 5 - Russian

There is an estimate of 277 million speakers of the Russian Language. Russian is actually part of the East Slavic group of languages. These type of language also includes the Ukranian and Belarusian ones among others. Much of the Russian speakers reside of course in Russia, wherein Russian is considered as the national language. Some other countries which house many Russian-speaking citizens include Ukraine as well as Kazakhstan. Some of the noted Russian speakers include world leaders such as Mikhail Gorbachev and Boris Yeltsin. An example of a conversational Russian word is "Zdravstvuite" (pronounced as ZDRAST-vet-yah meaning hello).

No. 4 Spanish

Spanish is part of the West Iberian group of Romance languages. The Spanish language also has a close resemblance to Portuguese. It is one of the most highly distributed languages all across the globe. Spanish is the known national language of more than twenty countries. It is also considered the official language in almost each of the states in Latin America except perhaps in Brazil and Belize. In addition, some large groups of native Spanish speakers have immigrated to America so that it has become one of the most widely used language in the Southwest area of the United States. There is a particular interest in the language because some English words are even borrowed from Spanish, such as "bonanza," "taco" and "enchilada" among others.

Spanish is also known as one of the 6 official languages laid down by the UN. Some of the conversational Spanish words is the widely known "hola" which means hello in English; it also includes "Que pase un buen dia" which means have a good day and Como te llamas which translates to what is your name.

No. 3 Hindustani

There is an estimated 497 million speakers of the Hindustani language. This language is actually part of the Indo-Aryan family of languages. Hindustani is considered a pluricentric language. It has 2 standard forms namely, Standard Hindi as well as Standard Urdu. The 2 forms are however almost indistinguishable. Hindi is the national language of India while Urdu is the national language of Pakistan. Some European and North American parts have also adapted the language because of immigrants from Hindsutani speaking countries.

No. 2 English

English is included in the West Germanic branch of languages. The origin of English is the Anglo-Saxon language which had its roots in both French & Latin languages. This is because there was a time when the Normans conquered England. Although the Language is developed in Britain, most of the English speakers are in the United States. In this country, there is an estimated 309 million English speakers. English is also the known official language of fifty three countries such as Canada and New Zealand among others. There are also a lot of English speaking populations in many parts of Africa and Oceania. Several of the most powerful organizations such as the EU,UN and NATO have also adapted English as their official language.

No.1 Mandarin

The Mandarin language has more than 1 billion speakers. It is the language spoken in the country with the largest population which is China. It beats English as the number one language spoken. It does not mean though that it is an easy language to master since more than a billion people speak it. Mandarin can be a tough language to learn because one word can have 4 pronunciations which makes it hard for a beginner to tell 1 tone from the other.

Many of those who are non-speakers of the language call Mandarin as Chinese. However, it is actually just one of the different Chinese languages that include Cantonese & Xiang among others.

Subject Matter Websites for World Language Learning

  1. Basic English/Spanish Translation Games
  2. Foreign Languages for Travelers
  3. LinguaWeb
  4. The Language Teaching Network
  5. Word 2 Word