Meeting a person who can fluently speak more than two languages is always impressive. However, it is mind-blowing khổng lồ meet someone who can speak more than 12 languages. People have learned many languages over the years, which raises a question - how many languages can a person learn?

How vì chưng you Label People who Speak Many Languages?

A person who is fluent in one language is referred to lớn as a monolingual. Forty percent of the population falls in this category. Those who can speak two languages are bilingual, & they ảo diệu 43 percent of the people. Thirteen percent are trilingual, và they can speak three languages fluently. Multilingual is fluent in more than four languages, and they are only 3% of the entire population.

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Some people can speak more than five languages, và they are known as polyglots. They are less than one percent of the population. Hyperpolyglots are fluent in more than 12 languages, và they are sporadic khổng lồ find. It means that there are people who speak more than 12 languages in the world.

One Person Can Speak Many Languages

Currently, there is only one living human being who speaks 59 languages. Ziad Fazah is the person who knows the most languages in the world. He was born in Liberia but later moved to lớn Lebanon. His record of 59 languages still stands, although some polyglots in the past might have surpassed his record.

How Many Languages Does the Average Person Speak?

An average person can speak two khổng lồ four languages in a lifetime. However, human brains work differently, and an average person"s brain can handle a maximum of four languages. It takes one year to learn the basics of a language for an average person. However, it requires persistence & frequent interaction with the language to lớn master it.

How Many Languages Can a Person Learn?

Since an average person can learn four languages, what about polyglots and hyperpolyglots? Unfortunately, there is no definite answer to lớn this question because the desire and motivation lớn learn different languages differ. However, with the right motivation, a person can learn as many languages as possible.

Sir John Bowring, a Hong Kong governor in the 19th century, was said khổng lồ know more than 200 languages. He was also fluent in 100 languages. In history, he is the polyglot who knows most languages. It is an example that shows human beings are not limited khổng lồ the number of languages they can learn.

What Is the Key to lớn Learning Many Languages?

As mentioned earlier, the motivation and purpose of learning create successful polyglots. Some people learn to fit in various careers, and some learn to travel the world. Inspiration & purpose can drive you to be a master of diverse languages.

The most successful career that relates to being a polyglot is translation services. Due lớn globalization, the demand for language translation services is high. A person who knows more than six languages can handle different clients conveniently. Those who are conversant with more than 12 languages have an added advantage in the industry.

Can you Get Confused by Different Languages?

It depends on the ability and motivation of a person. Some individuals can learn many languages without getting confused. However, learning similar languages can also create confusion. For instance, Spanish, French, & Italian are almost identical in some aspects. They may confuse you! The mix-up is, however, lost after getting deep into the languages.

Tips for Learning Many Languages

If you want to lớn learn many languages, get the purpose và motivations right. It is also advisable to learn two or three languages at the same time. It saves your time, and it also broadens your vocabulary. You should also choose your preferred method of learning và do not rush the learning process.

Benefits of Learning Multiple Languages at the Same Time

Learning multiple languages at the same time helps you understand the similarity & differences between languages. It also enables you khổng lồ avoid getting bored. Learning more than one language is so much more exciting! The process of learning becomes more enjoyable, and anyway, being multilingual has many cognitive benefits. Learning multiple languages at the same time also increases brain size, và it contributes to lớn brain growth.

Do you Have a Limit?

The answer is yes. You should not learn more than four languages at the same time. Learning five languages creates overload & confusion. It is also advisable to lớn learn similar languages at the same time.

Methods you Can Use to Learn Different Languages

You have many ways to learn foreign languages. Some people use clip and audiotapes; others use films, music, books, newspapers, & magazines. Regardless of the method, translation services can guide you. Document translation services help you translate a document in a resourceful way.

Challenges When Learning Many Languages

Time management is the main challenge. People bởi vì not find time lớn learn different languages. Lack of consistency is also a severe encounter. People get bored on the way, especially if the languages taken are complex. Lack of proper goals makes it hard khổng lồ learn many languages.

How to lớn Overcome the Challenges

It would be best if you created a learning schedule that runs throughout the learning session. For example, if you want lớn learn a language in 12 weeks, you should create a plan for the 12 weeks. You should start with simple and related languages and finalize with the challenging ones. Your routine should also be in line with your personal life to create balance.

It is also essential to always stay focused on your goals. Your goals usually force you lớn continue learning when it gets complicated. For instance, if you want to lớn feature in language translation services, the desire should keep you going. It would help if you also made the language learning process fun khổng lồ avoid tediousness.

If you want lớn learn many languages, start today. There are many certified translation services out there, so you vày not have a reason khổng lồ give up. Translation services ensure that you understand your preferred language in the most convenient way possible.

I’m often asked, how many languages vày you speak? I think many polyglots are asked this question và it’s a difficult question to answer because we can have varying degrees of knowledge of languages. Some languages we can just speak right away. If you ask me to say something in my stronger languages I can just start speaking. Not a problem. But then I have other languages where I have a fair amount of knowledge, but I can’t just turn them on. So let me go through I would say the first dozen languages where I can speak now. Obviously, English, French and I’m going to go in a declining order of proficiency, so English and then French.

When I say speak, typically the languages that I can speak the best and the most confidently are the languages that I have spoken the most. Even though I’m a great proponent of input-based learning to build up your capability in a language, in order to speak it well you have to have lots of opportunity for real, meaningful conversations. So, obviously, I have had that in French, I have had it in Japanese, I have had it in Mandarin Chinese, I have had it in Spanish, but less. Most of my practice using the language was when I used khổng lồ hitchhike in Spain in the mid sixties, hours & hours & hours sitting with truck drivers & other people who picked me up. Recently, I have had far less opportunity lớn speak Spanish.


Then probably comes Swedish because I did a lot of traveling in Sweden doing business và German, but both of those languages are languages that I speak less well than the first group, simply because I don’t have as big a vocabulary. I haven’t done as much reading và listening in them và I make more mistakes. I can converse comfortably, but with more mistakes.

Then comes probably Italian. I have traveled lớn Italy và so I can speak that language. Then probably Cantonese và then comes Portuguese, which is very similar lớn Spanish. It’s almost lượt thích Spanish spoken with a few different words and different pronunciation. I’ve had less opportunity to lớn speak it, some while in Brazil, some while in Portugal, but really not that much. So with my Portuguese I don’t feel as confident. It ends up being a conscious effort khổng lồ convert my Spanish into Portuguese & I don’t feel so comfortable speaking it.

Next comes Russian where I have had a lot of input, lots of listening & reading, some opportunity khổng lồ speak. I was in Russia briefly, for a week or 12 day, back seven or eight years ago. More recently I was in Ukraine, particularly in Kiev & Eastern Ukraine, and I was speaking Russian most of the time. I can turn it on. With mistakes, but I can turn it on.

It’s the same with Ukrainian now, which I learned after Russian. I was, in fact, on television in Ukraine in Kiev, prime-time television speaking both Russian and Ukrainian. I understand the languages well. I speak Russian. I understand Russian much better, but I understand them both comfortably and I can speak albeit with mistakes.

So that takes me, I believe, unless I’ve forgotten a language in there, up to about 12 that I can say I speak comfortably. These are the languages that I speak. Next comes a group of languages where I have hardly had any practice speaking, but I have a fair degree of understanding. These are languages that I would say I know, but I don’t speak.

Korean is say next, right? According to lớn Ling
Q, I have 40,000 words that I know in Korean. When I was in Seoul và I gathered with a group of people there we had dinner & I was speaking Korean, but I haven’t spoken much Korean. I’ve had a few isolated online conversations. I’ve worked at it quite a bit, but I don’t feel comfortable in saying that I speak it. Although superficially it can sound as if I speak it, it wouldn’t take me more than a couple of khổng lồ get, I believe, in a Korean environment to lớn get my Korean up to the level where I could comfortably say I speak it.

Then I’d go Czech, Polish and Slovak that are related languages. Here again, I understand them, a lot of them anyway. Given an opportunity to lớn be in that environment, I could elevate them to the level of languages that I speak, but I don’t lượt thích to say I speak them. I like to say I know them. I know of them. I’m acquainted with them, but I can’t say that I comfortably speak them.

So the first 12 are the ones that I speak. The next four are ones that I think I could, I’m close to lớn being able lớn say I speak, but I’m not quite there yet because I haven’t had enough speaking experiences. Then come the languages that I have been working on more recently.

First of all, Romanian và Greek that I put a fair amount of concentrated effort into for a few months before going khổng lồ those countries. Of course, Romanian is much easier than Greek because so much vocabulary is similar khổng lồ Italian. Some of it is similar to lớn Slavic languages, about 20% of it. It’s written in the Latin alphabet. I’ve found that even after two months of a lot of input-based learning & some online tutoring, I was able lớn communicate in Romania. Greek, I spent eight months at it. It’s a different writing system, there are fewer sort of freebie vocabulary items, but I was able to lớn communicate comfortably while I was on the Island of Crete.

In both those languages, if confronted today by someone speaking Romanian or Greek, I wouldn’t be able khổng lồ say much, if anything at all. So those are certainly not languages that I speak, but those are languages that I have invested in. If I were to lớn go back lớn them, go back khổng lồ some of the material I’ve been using to lớn learn and start speaking I could, again, raise the level, but they’re certainly not languages that I can claim lớn speak.

Now come my last three languages, Arabic, Persian và Turkish. There my màn chơi is that they are no longer unfamiliar lớn me, I know how they work. I have in Persian 2,500 words, in Arabic 8,000 words, in Turkish 6,000 words. In some ways Persian is the easiest of the three because the structure is so similar to lớn European languages, but of course the writing system is a bit of an obstacle.

Those are languages that I will be working on, all three of them, over the next year or so to gradually improve my level. Will they ever reach the cấp độ of the first 12? I don’t think so, unless I spend a lot of time in Turkey, in Iran or in an Arabic-speaking country. The problem with Arabic again is that I’m studying traditional Arabic và there’s no country where that’s the national language. Who knows? Maybe I’ll spend some time in Lebanon & learn Levantine Arabic or in Jordan or somewhere.

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So there you have it. It’s a summary of the 12 languages that I can say that I speak, four languages that I could elevate khổng lồ the level of languages that I speak but I just consider them languages that I know, two languages that I learned over a short period of time which are at a lower level of development & then the final three. So the total is 21, but only 12 of them can I genuinely say that I speak.