The English language is spoken widely around the world, and it is now considered a global language. Approximately 360 million people speak the English language as a first language, and about one billion people in the world speak English as a second language. The language is the most taught in the world as a foreign language, and it is the official language of many international organizations like the United Nations. Publications like books and magazines written in English can be found in many countries all over the world. Of all the books published in the world, English literature accounts for about 28% of them.
English Speakers By Country
The United States has the most significant number of English speakers in the world with 283,160,411 speakers. English is an essential language in the United States with 32 states having it as their official language. Many jobs and businesses in the United States require knowledge of the English language. The English language is taught at all levels of schooling and is compulsory in all colleges and universities since it is a requirement for bachelor’s and associate’s degrees.
There are 125,344,736 English speakers in India, making India the country with the second largest number of English speakers. However, about 220,000 people speak English as the first language while the rest take it as a second language. The English language in India is a sure way to get white-collar jobs. Fluent English speakers in India are treated with respect since the language is mostly spoken in higher education platforms, the national media, and upper judiciary and corporate businesses. The majority of Indians speak what the older generation refer to as Baju English which is some broken English that may not be comprehensible to most native English speakers in countries like the United States and the United Kingdom.
Pakistan has the third largest number of English speakers in the world at 108,036,049 speakers. The English spoken in Pakistan is a variation of the language and is called Pakistani English or Paklish. About 27% of the Pakistani population speaks English as a first language while 58% speak English as a second language. The Pakistani government uses policies that were set by the British of making English a language of the elite. The English language is a language of power in Pakistan as it is used in civil service, higher judiciary, universities, and prestigious radios and newspapers. English is taught at all levels of schooling in Pakistan.
Classification of the English language
The English language is classified as a Germanic language since it descends from the same origin as other languages in this group such as German and Swedish. These languages descend from Proto-Germanic, which is a set of dialects from North Sea Germanic. The modern English language first evolved from Proto-Germanic into Old English, which became middle English from around the 8th to the 12th century. The language then evolved from 1500 to 1700 to become early modern English, and by the 18th century, the British Empire promoted the spread of the English language around the world through its colonies.