World language

global languageWorld Languagesinternational languageinternational languagesglobal languagesmajor languages of the worldgenuine spoken languageleading languagemajor languagesmore than one country
A world language is one that is spoken internationally and learned and spoken by numerous people as a second language.wikipedia
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Spanish language

SpanishSpanish-languageCastilian
On similar grounds, French and Spanish are also commonly categorized as world languages.
It is a global language and the world's second-most spoken native language, after Mandarin Chinese.

English language

EnglishEnglish-languageen
The most widely spoken (and likely the fastest spreading) world language today is English, with over 1.1 billion native and second-language users worldwide.
Through all types of printed and electronic media of these countries, English has become the leading language of international discourse and the lingua franca in many regions and professional contexts such as science, navigation and law.

Lingua franca

trade languagecommon languagelingua francas
Historically, Egyptian, Ancient Greek, Latin, Classical Chinese, Persian, Sanskrit and Classical Arabic have also functioned as world languages due to their previous standings as lingua francas over large parts of the world.
A world language – a language spoken internationally and by many people – is a language that may function as a global lingua franca.

German language

GermanGerman-languageGerman-speaking
German served as a lingua franca in large portions of Europe for centuries, mainly the Holy Roman Empire and later the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
One of the major languages of the world, German is a native language to almost 100 million people worldwide and the most widely spoken native language in the European Union.

French language

FrenchfrancophoneFrench-language
On similar grounds, French and Spanish are also commonly categorized as world languages.
His criteria were the numbers of native speakers, the number of secondary speakers (especially high for French among fellow world languages), the number of countries using the language and their respective populations, the economic power of the countries using the language, the number of major areas in which the language is used, and the linguistic prestige associated with the mastery of the language (Werber highlighted that French in particular enjoys considerable linguistic prestige).

Latin

Latin languageLat.la
Historically, Egyptian, Ancient Greek, Latin, Classical Chinese, Persian, Sanskrit and Classical Arabic have also functioned as world languages due to their previous standings as lingua francas over large parts of the world.
Latin was used as the language of international communication, scholarship and science until well into the 18th century, when it began to be supplanted by vernaculars (including the Romance languages).

Official languages of the United Nations

six official languagesofficial language of the United Nationsco-official language of the United Nations
Russian is the largest native language in Europe, the most geographically widespread language in Eurasia, one of the six official languages of the United Nations, and one of two official languages aboard the International Space Station.
Most of the proposed languages are World Languages that are lingua francas or are either Supra-regional or Supercentral in nature according to the Global Language System Theory.

English as a second or foreign language

English as a second languageESLlanguage background other than English
The most widely spoken (and likely the fastest spreading) world language today is English, with over 1.1 billion native and second-language users worldwide.

List of languages by number of native speakers

numbermost spoken languages20 languages with the largest numbers of native speakers
As an example, the native speaking population of Bengali vastly outnumber those who speak French as a first language, and it is one of the most spoken languages (ranking fifth or sixth ) in the world with nearly 230 million total speakers, and is known for its long and rich literary tradition.

International auxiliary language

auxiliary languageinternational languageauxiliary languages
A number of international auxiliary languages have been introduced as prospective world languages, the most successful of them being Esperanto, but none were learned by as many people as the world languages were.
The Academy was set up to conserve and perfect the auxiliary language Volapük, but soon conflicts arose between conservative Volapükists and those who wanted to reform Volapük to make it a more naturalistic language based on the grammar and vocabulary of major world languages.

Linguistic imperialism

dominant languagedominantlinguistic nationalism
Just as all the living world languages owe their status to linguistic imperialism, the suggestion of a given language as a world language or "universal language" has strong political implications.

Pluricentric language

pluricentricPluricentric Serbo-Croatian languagepolycentric standard language

Global language system

Global Language System Theory
Michael Morris argued that while it is clear that there is language hierarchy from the "ongoing interstate competition and power politics", there is little evidence provided that shows that the "global language interaction is so intense and systematic that it constitutes a global language system, and that the entire system is held together by one global language, English".

Translanguaging

In this conception of English language, it should be treated as a heterogeneous global language wherein standard varieties of English such as Indian English, Nigerian English, and Trinidadian English would still have the same status as the orthodox varieties of British and American English.

World Englishes

New EnglishesWorld EnglishEnglishes
Two scenarios have been advanced about English's future status as the major world language: it will ultimately fragment into a large number of mutually unintelligible varieties (in effect, languages), or it will converge so that differences across groups of speakers are largely eliminated.

List of languages by total number of speakers

largest language by number of speakers3rd most spoken language in the world3rd-most spoken language in the world

Second language

L2 speakersL2second-language
A world language is one that is spoken internationally and learned and spoken by numerous people as a second language.

International organization

international organizationsinternational organisationinternational organisations
A world language is characterized not only by the total number of speakers (native and second language speakers), but also by geographical distribution and its use in international organizations and diplomatic relations.

Diplomacy

diplomatic relationsdiplomatdiplomatic
A world language is characterized not only by the total number of speakers (native and second language speakers), but also by geographical distribution and its use in international organizations and diplomatic relations.

Arabic

Arabic languageArabic-languageArab
Other possible world languages include Arabic, Mandarin Chinese, Russian and Portuguese.

Mandarin Chinese

MandarinChineseMandarin dialects
Other possible world languages include Arabic, Mandarin Chinese, Russian and Portuguese.

Russian language

RussianRussian-languageRussian:
Russian is the largest native language in Europe, the most geographically widespread language in Eurasia, one of the six official languages of the United Nations, and one of two official languages aboard the International Space Station. Other possible world languages include Arabic, Mandarin Chinese, Russian and Portuguese.

Portuguese language

PortuguesePortuguese-languageBrazilian Portuguese
Other possible world languages include Arabic, Mandarin Chinese, Russian and Portuguese.

Egyptian language

EgyptianAncient EgyptianMiddle Egyptian
Historically, Egyptian, Ancient Greek, Latin, Classical Chinese, Persian, Sanskrit and Classical Arabic have also functioned as world languages due to their previous standings as lingua francas over large parts of the world.

Ancient Greek

GreekClassical GreekGr.
Historically, Egyptian, Ancient Greek, Latin, Classical Chinese, Persian, Sanskrit and Classical Arabic have also functioned as world languages due to their previous standings as lingua francas over large parts of the world.