With a new language comes new opportunities, new friends and an increased ability to connect with people from other cultures.
But getting started can be incredibly tasking. And it’s not like you have all the time in the world to do this.
You have other exciting things on your bucket list to attend to as well. We all do.
So, how do you go about this new, exciting feat without spending the next 5 years attending 3-hour long evening classes?
The answer primarily lies in your choice of language. Some languages tend to come naturally easier to people than others, especially those that share the same root with English. In other words, these languages are incredibly easier to learn and master quickly than others.
We’ve compiled a list of the top 10 easiest languages to help you get started. And they are the most popular ones spoken around the world too; talk about killing two birds with a single stone.
Apps are a great way to learn a new language. One of the best is Lingidy which is available to download for free from the App Store 📲
When it comes to the easiest language you can learn, Dutch is the top choice for most people and the reason for this is simple, it bears many similarities with English.
Except for Frisian, which has the closest root ties with English, Dutch is the second language whose words in terms of spellings and pronunciations cognate the most with similar words in English.
If you speak English, chances are you will be able to recognize and understand a large number of Dutch words.
For instance, Dutch (English): baas (boss), kat (cat), straat (street).
This makes this ancient yet still popular language, one of the easiest languages to learn in the world with some committed individuals learning and speaking Dutch in less than 3 months with 2 hours a day of practice.
So, if you are considering a second or third language to learn within a few months, Dutch might be the easiest choice on the menu for you.
Spanish is incredibly popular. With over 534 million speakers scattered around the globe, the odds that you will meet someone who speaks Spanish are great.
So taking up learning Spanish as a new project might not be such a bad idea if you are looking for an easy language to learn.
Spanish is among the easiest languages to learn for a beginner who may never have had any experience with the language before.
This is not surprising as Spanish shares many similarities with English.
Both languages share the same Latin alphabet system. This makes it easy for English learners to pronounce Spanish words.
And a lot of words in Spanish have the same spellings and are pronounced almost the same way as they are in English.
Actor remains actor, civil remains civil, chocolate retains its spellings as well as many other words.
Spanish also follow the same sentence structure (Subject-Verb-Object) as English:
Juan come pizza - Spanish
Juan eats pizza - English
When it comes to sentence structure, you will find speaking Spanish is a lot easier than making sentences in English. This is because Spanish is a lot more forgiving in the arrangement of tenses in a sentence than English.
Hence, making Spanish one of the easiest options for English learners and beginners to learn and master within a few years.
Norwegian belongs to the same family of languages as English. Being in the same family means that both languages share some similarities, especially in terms of vocabulary, sentence structure, and pronunciation.
Although Norwegian is primarily spoken in Norway and with only about 5 million people actively using the language, it can be a great addition to your lingual collection if you are a language enthusiast looking for an easy boost to your portfolio.
After all, Norwegian is among the easiest languages in the world to learn and within a few months, you can be on your way with a brand new language under your belt.
If you are a student planning to study in Norway, you should consider getting yourself acquainted with Norwegian. Norwegian is the primary language spoken in Norway.
Though most Norwegians are incredibly good with English and will speak it fluently with you when the need arises but you might often get left out of the group more often than you’d be comfortable with as they tend to communicate more in their local dialect while together in groups.
Norwegian is among the easiest languages to learn for English speakers and will be incredibly easy for you to pick up with a little commitment.
Although Portuguese is a romance language and not in the same category as English, English learners, however, find it incredibly easy to learn and speak Portuguese with minimal practice and commitment.
Portuguese is spoken by over 200 million people across the globe. It is the native language of Brazil, Portugal, Macau, East Timor, and a few African countries.
As a romance language, Portuguese has Latin roots like Spanish. And like Spanish, Portuguese shares many similarities with English especially in pronunciation, spellings, intonations, and nasal vowels.
If you already know how to speak Spanish, you will find it incredibly easy to learn Portuguese but it can be incredibly challenging to pronounce the words correctly as most Spanish learners tend to pronounce Portuguese words as though they are Spanish due to the similarities of both languages.
Indonesian is among the easiest languages you can start learning and get a hold of in no time.
It is spoken by over 40 million people predominantly in Indonesia and South-East Asian countries.
For starters, it shares many similarities with English and you'll find many English words with few changes to their spellings in Indonesian.
For instance, computer is spelt as komputer, bottle as botol, pear as pir amongst many others.
While Indonesian belongs to the Austronesian language family, Germanic language speakers can still learn it with ease. Thanks to the similarities between Indonesian and English words.
One thing however you will find a little tougher when learning Indonesian is the intonation of words.
The words may have the same spellings as English words, but they are often pronounced a little and sometimes entirely differently.
Frisian is an incredibly easy language to learn and a good choice for English speakers. Though it is no longer as popular as it was in the middle ages, it is still a great option if you are planning a trip to the Netherlands or some parts of Germany where it is still spoken.
If you love Italian and have been searching for the easiest languages to learn then you are in luck. Italian is among the easiest group of languages, English speakers can easily learn to speak fluently.
Italian is an indo-European language spoken by about 60-65 million people globally but with most of the speakers in Italy.
It is the fifth most taught language in schools after English, French, German, and Spanish. Though Italian is not a Germanic language like English, it is still an easy language for native English beginners to learn.
More than a quarter of the words in English come directly or indirectly from Latin, which forms the backbone of the Italian language.
With Italian being the closest to Latin, finding words with the same meanings and spellings in English becomes very common as many vocabularies in English are derived from Latin root words.
This makes learning Italian a lot easier for native English speakers than many other languages. And due to proximity, you can often meet a lot of Italian speakers to converse or practice with often.
Think of the perfect language of love and you wouldn't find anyone better than French.
French is the language of love. With the beautiful cities, amazing wines, beaches, delicious cuisines, and stunning coastlines, who wouldn't be thrilled for a chance to speak French?
Thankfully, French is easy enough for English speakers who might want to learn it as a second language without devoting all the days in a year to learn it.
French is spoken by over 200 million people around the world. It is the official language of 29 countries including France, Belgium, Monaco, Luxemburg, and Switzerland.
Algeria, Cameroon, Chad Benin, Burkina Faso, and a lot of other African countries also have French as their official languages.
According to the Foreign Service Institute, French is one of the easiest languages for English speakers to learn and become proficient in with a maximum of 30 weeks of practice.
Though the maximum length of time for fluency for English learners is a little higher than the time for some languages on this list, French is still no doubt a lot less hard than other languages out there.
Getting started with Swedish can be overwhelming for a beginner. The sheer number of vowels and gender variations in the language makes it harder for beginners to grasp the basics of Swedish easily.
But then again, each language has its unique difficulties which can only be overcome with persistence and practice.
So, while you may find it a little difficult to grasp the concept of gender and vowels easily in Swedish, with time you may find it easier to understand and speak.
This is why Swedish is still rated in category 1 of the FSI charts making it an easy to learn option for English speakers.
Like English, Swedish makes use of the Latin alphabet but with an additional 3 symbols for sounds peculiar to it. The special characters are the regular A and O with little dots and circles drawn on them.
Swedish is the official language of Sweden and is spoken by a vast majority of the over 10 million inhabitants of the country.
A lot of people may not easily agree with this but Romanian is among some of the easiest languages you can learn.
Most people think Romanian is hard to learn because of the way the words are pronounced but paying a little more attention to speakers can easily make you understand why Romanian is among the easiest languages anyone can pick up, especially if they are native English speakers.
And to further convince you, the United State of America foreign service institute ranked Romanian as a category 1 language. This means that Romania is easier to learn than you thought.
The institute estimates that it will take you about 23 weeks of average practice to reach the fluency level in Romanian. It can even take a lot less if you commit more than 2-3 hours per day or engage in fun conversations with another speaker.
Romanian also has a lot of words with the same spellings and meanings as those in English. For instance perfect, similar, contact, monument, ocean etc are all spelt the same way in Romanian as they are in English.
Many other words have almost the same spellings as their counterparts in English with little variations: senator (sentor), victory (victorie), famous (faimos), epilogue (epilog) etc.
The more you study Romanian, the more you become conversant with the way these words are spelt and pronounced and with time, it starts to come naturally to you to learn to differentiate and appreciate the little differences between both languages.
Finally, learning and mastering any language is usually a function of time and your commitment. The more time you commit to the language to study its structures, vocabulary, and interact with other people speaking the language, the better you tend to get.
To put in enough time to master a language requires your devotion and commitment to your goals. As such, while these languages may be among the easiest languages to learn in the world, you might find yourself stuck if you do not put in enough time and effort to achieve your goals.
Also, before choosing any among the easiest languages to pick up and start learning, you might want to set a goal for yourself and get ample reasons why you want to learn the language.
This is because having a reason for learning a language will provide you with the necessary passion to continue in your pursuit of learning it and not giving up easily when things start getting a little fuzzy and confusing.
If you want to learn a language quickly, download Lingidy for free from the App Store and get started on the fastest path to becoming conversational in a language!
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