Despite being complex, languages are incredibly fascinating and continue to open doors for those who learn them. Let us tell you the 20 most surprising facts about languages.

The most widely spoken mother tongue

  1. French was the official language of England for over 300 years
  2. Italian is the fifth most widely taught language, after English, French, Spanish and German.
  3. German is the most widely spoken mother tongue in Europe
  4. English speakers will be able to recognise more than 3,000 words in Spanish
  5. Portuguese has 178 million native speakers
  6. Romanian is thought to be the first of the Romance languages to break away from Latin
  7. It is estimated that English is spoken by 1.8 billion people
  8. Dutch has contributed many words to English, such as yacht, easel, cookie and freight.
  9. There are two official forms of written Norwegian: Bokmål (book language) and Nynorsk (New Norwegian).
  10. It took until the 20th century to achieve a standardised national language for all Swedes
  11. Danish is spoken in Denmark, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Germany.
  12. Latvian is the mother tongue of only 60% of the country’s population
  13. Lithuanian is similar to Sanskrit
  14. Greek has existed since around the 14th century BC
  15. Persian has not changed significantly since the 10th century
  16. Arabic is the official language of 22 countries.
  17. Hebrew is the language in which God first spoke to Adam
  18. Mandarin is the language with the most native speakers, 845 million of them
  19. Cantonese is the language most used for business in Southeast Asia
  20. In Japanese there is no way to indicate if a word is singular or plural
Rocío González

Author Rocío González

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