List of most widely spoken languages (by number of countries)

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This is a list of the most widely spoken languages in the world sorted by the number of countries in which the language is spoken. A language has been deemed to be spoken in a country if it is the official language of that country or is spoken traditionally or/and natively as a first language by a majority of that country's inhabitants. The definition of a single language is to some extent arbitrary, and there is no universal agreement on the number of countries in the world, since a number of states have disputed sovereignty status and because the definition of country also to some extent is arbitrary. That means that this list should be seen as tentative. For example, in San Andrés, Colombia, the inhabitants do not only speak English, but also French and other languages, too.

Rank Language Number of countries Countries
1
English
67
American Samoa (United States), Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda (United Kingdom), Botswana, Cameroon, Canada, Cook Islands (New Zealand), Curaçao (Netherlands), Dominica, Eritrea, Fiji, Gambia, Ghana, Grenada, Guam (United States), Guyana, Hong Kong (China), India, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, Kiribati, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Malaysia, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Federated States of Micronesia, Namibia, Nauru, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Andrés y Providencia (Colombia), Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Sint Maarten (Netherlands), Solomon Islands, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States, U.S. Virgin Islands (United States), Vanuatu, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
2
French
34
Algeria, Belgium, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Canada, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, France, Gabon, Guinea, Haiti, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritius, Monaco, Morocco, New Caledonia (France), Niger, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, Switzerland, Togo, Tunisia, Vanuatu.
3
Arabic
25
Algeria, Bahrain, Chad, Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Palestine, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, Yemen.
4
Spanish
21
Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico (United States), Spain, Uruguay, Venezuela.
5
Portuguese
11
Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Macau, Mozambique, Portugal, São Tomé and Príncipe, Timor-Leste, Goa (India).
5
Russian
11
Abkhazia, Belarus, Estonia, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Russia, South Ossetia, Transnistria, Ukraine
6
Persian
9
Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Iraq, Kuwait, Bahrain, Russia, Azerbaijan
7
Italian
8
Italy, Croatia,[1] Malta,[2] Monaco,[3] San Marino, Slovenia, Switzerland, Vatican City
8
German
7
Austria, Belgium, Germany, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Italy
9
Chinese
6
China, Hong Kong (in the form of Cantonese), Macau (in the form of Cantonese), Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan
10
Indonesian
5
Indonesia (known as Indonesian, and Malay is a separate regional language), Brunei, Malaysia, Singapore, East Timor (in the form of Indonesian, as working language)
10
Kiswahili
5
Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Eastern Congo (DRC), Southern Coasts of Somalia and Northern Coasts Mozambique

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Languages of Croatia. Ethnologue.com
  2. ^ A view of the linguistic situation in Malta. Ignasi Badia i Capdevila
  3. ^ Society in Monaco. monaco-iq.com