Major Languages in the World


A language is the linguistic representation of a country, and it is officially recognized by the government and the authorities. There are many languages around the world, but the most widely spoken languages are: Chinese, English, Hindu, and Spanish. Although many linguistic experts agree that the figures are not totally accurate, English is considered to be the fastest growing language in the world. Research presented in some linguistic forums clearly shows that English has become a global language.

The technological dominance of the English-speaking world has contributed to the spread of English as a universal language. Any kind of statement or scientific, publication of relevance is generally made public in English, and almost all business-related situations are carried out in English. Many of the biggest companies in the world are managed by English-speaking people. It is also worth mentioning that English is the official language of many world bodies such as: the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, and the World Health Organization among others.

Despite the fact that China is the most populated country on the planet, Chinese has not become an international language due to the fact that many people find it difficult to learn. Hindu is a major language because India is highly populated, but it is chiefly use in India and has not gained major acceptance in other countries. Spanish is among the major languages in the world, because it is the official language in many countries. Spanish is spoken in most of South and Central America and in Spain. The growing Spanish-speaking population in the United States has made this language one of the most important foreign languages in the USA. Spanish is spoken in big urban areas such as New York, Los Angeles, Miami, and other areas with large concentrations of Spanish-speaking people.

People from different English-speaking countries can generally understand each other despite their differing accents. Accents can seem a little bit peculiar. They can mild or slight, strong, thick, or heavy, but a person form let’s say New Zealand who speaks English with a strong New Zealand accent, can usually communicate with an American, a Briton, a Canadian or a person from any other country where English is spoken.

Vocabulary and Expressions

Common = wide spread; general; ordinary; of frequent occurencd; usual; familiar.
Officially recognized = recognized by an authority.
Although = conj. Regardless the fact that (or though).
Experts = people who know a great deal about something.
Figures = numbers (quantity).
Totally = adv. Similar to “completely.”
Forums = public meetings or presentation involving discussion among experts.
Worldwide = throughout the world.
Deny = to refuse to recognize or acknowledge; to state that something is not true.
Statement = word similar to “declaration.”
Scientific = involved with science.
Technological dominance = to dominate in the field of technology.
Carried out = past participle of carry out similar to “done.”
Highly populated = populated by a lot of people.
To total = to equal a total of; amount to.
Foreign = from other country.
Accents = different ways that people speak.

Conversation Activities

1. Why do you think there are many languages in the world?
2. How would you define a language?
3. Do you think that the world will ever speak just one language?
4. Do animals have a way to communicate among themselves?
5. Why do people want to learn different languages?
6. What language do you think should be spoken throughout the world?
7. Do you think that in order to learn a language it is important to learn the culture of the targeted language? Give reason for this.