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unitednw.gif (9169 bytes) Languages

When we talk about languages, of course we are talking about human languages, also called natural or ordinary languages.  We are a travel and language website and nothing pleases us more than to be able to provide information that makes it easy, and sometimes painless, to learn to speak at least a few words of another language. It is a wonderful gesture of friendship and respect. Whether you are a tourist, traveler or adventurer, being able to speak a little of the language of the people you meet will make your trip more enjoyable both for you and for the people you meet. My the smiles of pleasant surprise you will see when you say
hello to children in a village in their own language somewhere in the world!

There are a variety of products and services to help people learn to speak another language. All the way from flash cards, web-based learning aids, and software to books, audio tapes, videos and language schools.  The links we include here are to comprehensive sources of language information. Some provide background information and some offer language material or have extensive links to other language sites that do.  

If you are a tourist or traveler and want some advice on learning a language, and you do not want to spend the time to take a language course, see our Language Primer for some practical advice based on someone who has traveled widely and has had the pleasure of learning a few words in other languages along the way. 

If you want to see what languages are spoken in a country, or to jump to sites for a specific language, click here to go to our handy World Links section. We want to make it as easy as possible for people to quickly learn a few words and phrases of other languages. Our country, city and language pages are cross-linked to each other.

Click on the first letter of a language>>>> A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

Language Topics on this page

Language Overview

You can easily display web pages in other languages.

How Many Languages In The World? More than you think! Between 6,000 to 7,000 depending on the source.

Most Widely Spoken Languages

A new way to look at it!  Includes number of speakers for each.

Type Fonts for Foreign Languages

You can easily display web pages in other languages, as well as, download fonts for use with your word processor or desktop publishing software.

Web Site & Web Page Automatic Translation Wonderful automatic translation of web pages to other languages.

Language Product Reviews

Websites that have reviews of language products.

Language Topics on our website

World Languages

We have over 300 language pages to help you learn another language.

Language Software We have links to language software companies and directories.

Language Stores

Some of the best on the web.

Languages for Kids

Resources for children to learn a language.

Language Resources Well-known language companies and other interesting language sites.
Language Schools Links to language schools worldwide.
Language Primer Practical advice for learning a few words of another language.
On-Line Dictionaries Some wonderful sites with directories of on-line dictionaries.


Both software and human translation services.

 Language Overview
  • Wikipedia- Foreign Language.  A brief article about foreign languages and some related links.
  • Wikipedia- Natural Language.  An extensive article about human languages.
  • Summer Institute of Linguistics.  A brief article about what foreign languages and a good set of related links.
  • Mercator - Linguistic Rights and Legislation. Mercator is a network of three research and documentation centers that deal with the minority languages of the European Union, including languages spoken in overseas territories of European Union countries. If you want to know detailed information on the languages spoken by these minorities including a language's legal status, this is the place to come. They call their information page on a minority language, a dossier, so that should tell you something!
  • Language Museum. They have sample text in over 2,000 languages. Each sample consists of (1) a sample of text in the language displayed as an image so you don't have to worry about having the type font on your computer, (2) an English translation, (3) the countries and populations that speak it, and(4) its language family and branch.
 How Many Languages Are There in the World?

There are anywhere from 6,000 to 7,000 languages spoken in the world today depending on the information source although about 90% of the world's population (that's 6 billion people) speak one or several of just 15 languages. There are estimated to be another 5,000 dialects in existence but again that depends on your source.  Pretty awesome for such a small planet!  Languages can both unite and divide a country. 
It would be a good thing if everyone on the planet spoke two languages, their native language that they learned growing up and a common language shared by everyone. The ability of anyone to be able to talk directly to anyone else would be a powerful force for world peace. 

Language statistics are not exact and vary depending on the source of information and other factors.  For example, there is no universal agreement on what is a dialect so several definitions are in use. Also, because we live on the Planet Earth, politics plays a role in what is considered a distinct language or dialect. 
Most Widely Spoken Languages

Well, like almost everything else on this planet, there is no simple answer as it depends on how you look at it.  There is also the matter of the most influential languages which are based not merely on the number of speakers but also on other factors.  The best website we have found is actually an American High School in Cleveland, Ohio. They received a Golden Web Award for their language topic
The World's Most Widely Spoken Languages and they certainly deserve it. The information is presented in a clear and interesting way.  Even if you are not interested in learning about languages, we think you will find it fascinating to read.  The various lists cover 9 to 13 languages depending on what is represented by each list.  It is just a single page so it is a quick read.  They also have some nice Languages of the World charts and graphs.  

Thank you, Mr. Turner for being the force behind this project.


List of All The Languages of the World

Summer Institute of Linguistics  This is the mother of all websites for languages and has the best list. Great job!

Country - Language Guides

  • Almost all travel guides include a list of the languages spoken for the places they cover.

  • World Links. Our website, Travel Science, is the only travel site we know of that cross-links their country and city pages that contain tourist information to language pages that have links to websites where you can learn the languages spoken, often online and for free.  All our language pages also have links to our country pages where the language is spoken.  Country and city pages are cross-linked as well.  We want to make it easy for tourists and travelers to quickly learn a few words in the language of the places they will be visiting.  Start your travel and language adventure by visiting our World Links section.

  • Summer Institute of Linguistics  Languages of the World.  This is the best place on the web to find out detailed information on the languages of the world.  This link will take you to their world map and lists of all the languages of the world organized by continent. You can click on the map or select a continent by name and then select from a list of countries for that continent.

 Type Fonts for Foreign Languages

We cover how to find a type font you need to be able to view a website whose language uses a different set of characters than the Latin-based alphabets used by western countries.  We also cover sources of downloading fonts for use in your word processors and desktop publishing systems where you need to enter text in another language that does not use a Latin-based alphabet.  Remember, if you are entering characters in another language, they will need to be mapped to your standard QWERTY keyboard and in some cases there is also special software required to allow you to type in another language, such as when the language is written right to left instead of left to right. (Microsoft provides a Windows Character Map tool you can bring up that displays your keyboard in a separate window with the keys configured for a foreign font.

If you need to view a website that is not in the English language, in many cases your browser will automatically display the text correctly due to the inclusion of foreign type fonts with the browser and the information embedded in the webpage that tells your browser what language type fonts the text is in. Also see the article below on free tools to automatically translate web pages.

If you encounter a case where the page does not display correctly in the original language, there are several options available. The common option is to install the necessary type fonts used by the language on your computer. If you are using Microsoft's Internet Explorer, it has many options for getting the fonts. Check the IE Help Menu for information by searching for "foreign language support."  Almost all foreign fonts are available for free or as shareware from various sources. Microsoft has made available just about every foreign font you would need. You can even download, for free, their CJK language Pac for Chinese, Japanese and Korean. Apple Computer also has language kits available. Netscape and other browsers can also show you how to get foreign fonts for their browsers.  
Some websites that use foreign fonts let you download fonts free to view their pages. Check a browser's help, online help and knowledge base for information on foreign fonts. 

Foreign Font Resources
To search the web, enter the name of the language you want a font for or the name of the written form of the language which may differ from the name of the language itself. Include the term "type fonts" and if you are looking for free or shareware, enter those words as well.

 Web Site and Web Page Automatic Translation
Oh, the marvels of the 21st century and some of them are even free!

When you encounter a website in another language and would like to see it translated into your own language, don't despair.  Free automatic translation tools are available and will usually do a pretty good job. But not all tools have the same lists of languages they can translate between so you may have to search around.

To Search the web:  if you want to search the web for a translation tool to translate between two languages, enter the two language names and the word automatic translation. If you are looking for a free or shareware tools, include those words as well.

Example:  English German free automatic translation,   French Russian free translation
Humanitas International.  This is the best place we have found for free automatic translations of text or websites.  These wonderful people have built a page that has all the major free automatic translation website input forms on it.  In addition they have two free Identify Language tools where you can paste in sample text of an unknown language and get it identified.
Google Language Tools. Thank you Google for giving the world this wonderful automatic translation tool. You can get a pretty good automatic translation by using their translation tool. Just scroll down to the Translate a web page box and see if they have an automatic translation between the two languages you need. If they do, select it and then paste the URL web address of the web page into the http:// box. The great thing about this is that if you click on a link on the translated page to go to another page on the same website, it gets automatically translated as well!  Truly amazing!
Babel Fish Translation. This is AltaVista's fine automatic translation tool.
Reverso Free Trial Translation Service. They allow you to translate parts of web pages and text for free but it is not as complete as Google and some of the others as they offer a commercial product as well.
 Language Product Reviews

Here are some websites that have reviewed language products (books, software, CD-ROM, and audio or video learning aids).

To search the web: Enter:  Learn <language name> product reviews >>    Learn French product reviews

1.  TopTenReviews.com- Software Reviews.  They have an excellent review of some foreign language software products. Click on the product you are interested in under the Foreign Languages category.

2.  About.com - Language Product Reviews - This will take you to the search results on their website for Language Product Reviews.  They have rated about half a dozen language products the last time we checked. 

3.  ZDNet - Foreign Language Reviews.  They have a few reviews of language software products.

4.  Translation-Guide.com has a language software review section.

5.  Language-Learning-Advisor - Product Reviews  This is their Product Reviews section. They also have information and links for learning major languages.

6.  Amazon.com  All their products include customer reviews and ratings. Here are some direct links.  Once on the page, enter the language you are interested in, in the search box or select the language if it is shown in a list of languages on the page.


Amazon.com Resources


If you are a tourist or traveler and just want to take along a phrasebook or dictionary, this link will take you to their Travel Book section. Just enter the name of the language + language in the search box and click Go. (if you want a specific type of language book or publisher, include that as well.)

Example:  German Language, Lonely Planet German Language, Swedish phrasebook, Dutch-English dictionary.
Add the language name to the search box to get all products available for the language (e.g., books, DVD, audio cassette, software, etc.) and click Go.

Example:  Language learning German

Or if you are interested in a type of language product, include the term:

Example:  German Phrasebook
This is their foreign language book section. Select a language from the left-hand column or enter the language name in the search box and click Go. If you are looking for a specific publisher or type of book (e.g., Berlitz, phrasebook, dictionary, Berlitz) include that term as well. 

Example:  Thai, Thai phrasebook, Berlitz Thai phrasebook, Thai-English dictionary


We drop you off at the Software section with search results for Language software. Just add the name of the language to the search box to find software for that language and click Go.

Example:  Language software French
Add the language name to the search box to get audio courses available for that language and click Go.

Example:  Language audio courses Italian
Add the language name to the search box to get video courses available for that language and click Go.

Example:  Language video courses Japanese
This is their Electronics section. Add the language name to the search box to get electronic translators available between two languages and click Go.

Example:  Foreign language translators English Russian

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