Monday, December 21, 2009

things to consider when thinking about the next world language

According to The language revolution by David Crystal, Spanish is the world's fastest-growing mother tongue.

Here are the top 11 Most Widely Spoken Languages (1996)
    Rank,Countries2Population3
    language(in millions)
     1. Chinese, MandarinBrunei, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mongolia, Philippines, Singapore, S. Africa, Taiwan, Thailand1120
     2. EnglishAustralia, Belize, Botswana, Brunei, Cameroon, Canada, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, The Gambia, Ghana, Guyana, India, Ireland, Israel, Lesotho, Liberia, Malaysia, Micronesia, Namibia, Nauru, New Zealand, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Samoa, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Solomon Islands, Somalia, S. Africa, Suriname, Swaziland, Tonga, U.K., U.S., Vanuatu, Zimbabwe, many Caribbean states, Zambia.480
     3. SpanishAlgeria, Andorra, Argentina, Belize, Benin, Bolivia, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Rep., Ecuador, El Salvador, Eq. Guinea, Guatemala, Honduras, Ivory Coast, Madagascar, Mali, Mexico, Morocco, Nicaragua, Niger, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Spain, Togo, Tunisia, United States, Uruguay, Venezuela.332
     4. ArabicEgypt, Sudan, ALgeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Lybia, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Jordan, Yemen, UAE, Oman, Iraq, Lebanon235
     5. BengaliBangladesh, India, Singapore189
     6. HindiIndia, Nepal, Singapore, S. Africa, Uganda182
     7. RussianBelarus, China, Estonia, Georgia, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Mongolia, Russia, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, U.S., Uzbekistan180
     8. PortugueseAngola, Brazil, Cape Verde, France, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Portugal, São Tomé and Príncipe170
     9. JapaneseJapan, Singapore, Taiwan125
     10. GermanAustria, Belgium, Bolivia, Czech Rep., Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Kazakhstan, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Paraguay, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Switzerland98
    11. Chinese, WuChina77.2

2 comments:

  1. Interesting that the two major Iberian Romance languages, together, have more speakers than English.

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  2. True. Now that English is a world language, linguists are beginning to talk about Englishes, and some say we should also talk about Latins--Spanish, French, etc.

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