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The 20 Most Spoken languages - Peter Sheil [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Peter Sheil

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The 20 Most Spoken languages [Jul. 18th, 2002|12:27 pm]
Peter Sheil
OK, I'll tell you all what I think. My data comes from the book "The Power of Babel" by John McWhorter.

The majority of the discussion was on livejournal_uk journal, so look there if you want to see it.

Several of you got very close or all corect on the top 5 and Stephen Booth got all 20 of them all correct - must have read my mind ;)

1. Chinese
There are just so many of them that they win hands down. I am presuming that the different Chinese dialects are all grouped together.
2. English
Including American, Australian and other dialects.
3. Spanish
The language of the future? With their higher birth rates the Spanish speakers are already more common in some areas of the USA and may predoninate one day. Scary thought for some Americans I'm sure.
4. Hindi
Surprised me, but there are several of the languages of the Indian sub-continent on the list.
5. Arabic
Another surprise for me.
6. Bengali
7. Russian
Just so many of them I guess :)
8. Portugese
This high because of their colonies in Africa and S America.
9. Japanese
There is a rumour that it is this high only because of the number of people who learnt it to try and understand the instructions on consumer electronics gadgets :))
10. German
I expected this to be higher - I am euro-centric I guess.
11. French
Same here - with all their colonies (and Canada) I thought they'd be higher.
12. Punjabi
13. Javanese
A surprise - you don't think they are including JavaScript in this do you?
14. Bihari
15. Italian
16. Korean
17. Telugu
I don't even know where this and the following two languages come from. Just call me ignorant :)
18. Tamil
19. Marathi
20. Vietnamese
A surprise for me.

Well it was interesting seeing other people's views. There is, of course, no "right" answer for this as it is changing day by day and it is very dependant on how you actually do the counting. Maybe we could just randomly dial phone numbers and see what language people reply in? *grins and shudders at ending a sentence preposition with*

Peace
peter
LinkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: mysticprincess
2002-07-18 05:07 am (UTC)
I would have gotten 3 out of the top 5 right.
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: petersheil
2002-07-18 05:25 am (UTC)

Re:

No? I thought the top 3 would be obvious ... even for an American ;)

(hugs)
p
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: mysticprincess
2002-07-18 05:34 am (UTC)

Re:

Duh! That's what I said. I got 3 right! Honestly, you Brits can't even read English ;-p
{{{HUGS}}}
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: petersheil
2002-07-18 06:08 am (UTC)

Re:

Oh yes ... Duh me :) I'm just not used to getting all the responses the thread did in the livejournal_uk community and I got confused.

(if you believe that you'll believe anything)
:)
p
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[User Picture]From: desert_fae
2002-07-18 05:14 am (UTC)
I would have thought Vietnamese would have been closer to the top.... I just tried to stumble my way thur a conversation yesterday with some vietnamese speaking people.. and I regularly speak with spanish speaking people.. I think I have the spanish down alright to stumble thru a conversation but not the vietnamese at all
BTW-I got your message yesterday.. its best to try after 4:30pm on Wed, thursday, and Friday... you called while I was at work (I get there usually about 15 minutes early)
((hugs))
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: petersheil
2002-07-18 05:40 am (UTC)
If I understand what your job is then I'd expect you to have a disproportionately higher number of ethnic minority groups in your calls.

I'll try and call today, otherwise it will be from Canada.

Blessed Be, peace and strength
peter
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: desert_fae
2002-07-18 05:48 pm (UTC)

Re:

huh? you going to canada?
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: petersheil
2002-07-20 10:07 am (UTC)
Yep, in fact I'm here now!
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[User Picture]From: acoolsecretary
2002-07-18 06:34 am (UTC)
Wow! That was interesting. Peter what kind of dancing do they call what you do? Refresh me memory...
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: petersheil
2002-07-18 07:01 am (UTC)

Re:

Morris - specifically Border Morris, a style based upon dances done in the Welsh / English border region.

:) *does a quick one, hop, two, hop much to the amasement of evryone in the open plan office*
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[User Picture]From: acoolsecretary
2002-07-18 08:25 am (UTC)

Re:

...cool! I am doing myself (ego booster) a birthday thingey (you will see tomorrow) and I threw you in there but wanted to get me facts straight...thanks for the info...more so, thanks for the visual...nice little gig you do there...hee hee!
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