How many languages are there in the world? The language includes the set of symbols, verbal or non-verbal, used by a community or nation to communicate, each country, tribe, region or people has its own language. It is said that when the last member of the social group who speaks a language dies, the language disappears. The disappearance of a language takes with it a lot of irretrievable information and knowledge. However, there are languages that have been revived throughout history, an example of this is Hebrew.
It is estimated that there are about 7,000 languages in the world. Many think that it is almost impossible to calculate the exact number of languages in the world, therefore this figure is only an estimate. An exact figure will probably never be forthcoming as every two weeks a language dies and others fight to have their dialects recognized as languages.
It is also interesting to note that the geographical distribution of languages is not homogeneous, for example in Cameroon its 12 million inhabitants have 270 languages. And the most diverse country in linguistic terms is Papua New Guinea, which has a population of approximately 8 million inhabitants and more than 800 different languages are spoken.
In some countries there is a great amount of linguistic diversity as there are many aboriginal groups that defend their native languages. On the other hand, in other countries the languages of the majority of native inhabitants have been disappearing since the dominant language prevailed over the others.
It is estimated that 43% of existing languages are in danger of extinction and it is likely that by the end of the century half of the nearly 7,000 current languages will have disappeared. Among the endangered languages is Chemehuevi, spoken fluently by very few people in Arizona. Also Taushiro, which is one of the indigenous languages of Peru, currently has a single fluent speaker named Amadeo García García. Just like these, there are a large number of languages on the verge of being lost and that is why governments must continue fighting to document what remains of these.