Spanish Language

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Spanish or Castilian (español or castellano) is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several dialects and languages in the northern fringes of the Iberian Peninsula during the 10th century and gradually spread through the Kingdom of Castile, becoming the foremost language for government and trade in the Spanish Empire.

Latin, the basic foundation of the Spanish language, was introduced to the Iberian Peninsula by Romans during the Second Punic War around 210 BC. During the 5th century, Hispania was invaded by Germanic Vandals, Suevi, Alans, and Visigoths, resulting in numerous dialects of Vulgar Latin. After the Moorish Conquest in the 8th century, Arabic became an influence in the evolution of Iberian languages including Castilian.

Modern Spanish developed with the Readjustment of the Consonants (es: Reajuste de las sibilantes del castellano) that began in 15th century. The language continues to adopt foreign words from a variety of other languages, as well as developing new words. Castilian was taken most notably to the Americas as well as to Africa and Asia Pacific with the expansion of the Spanish Empire between the fifteenth and nineteenth centuries.

As of 2009, 329 million people speak Spanish as a native language. It is the second most spoken language in the world in terms of native speakers, after Mandarin Chinese.[1][2] Mexico contains the largest population of Spanish speakers. Spanish is one of the six official languages of the United Nations.



Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
A page of Cantar de Mio Cid, in medieval Castilian.
A page of Cantar de Mio Cid, in medieval Castilian.

Spanish evolved from Vulgar Latin introduced to the Iberian Peninsula by Romans during the Second Punic War around 210 BC, with some loan words from Arabic during the Andalusian period[3] and other surviving influences from Basque and Celtiberian, as well as Germanic languages via the Visigoths.

Castilian is thought to have evolved in the northern fringes of the Iberian Peninsula during the 10th century along the remote crossroad strips among the Alava, Cantabria, Burgos, Soria and La Rioja provinces of Northern Spain (see Glosas Emilianenses), as a strongly innovative and differing variant from its nearest cousin, Leonese, with a higher degree of Basque influence in these regions (see Iberian Romance languages). Modern Spanish developed in Castile with the Readjustment of the Consonants (es:Reajuste de las sibilantes del castellano) during the 15th century. Typical features of Spanish diachronical phonology include lenition (Latin vita, Spanish vida), palatalization (Latin annum, Spanish año, and Latin anellum, Spanish anillo) and diphthongation (stem-changing) of short e and o from Vulgar Latin (Latin terra, Spanish tierra; Latin novus, Spanish nuevo). Similar phenomena can be found in other Romance languages as well.

This northern dialect from Cantabria was carried south during the Reconquista, and remains a minority language in the northern coastal Morocco.

The first Latin-to-Spanish grammar (Gramática de la lengua castellana) was written in Salamanca, Spain, in 1492, by Elio Antonio de Nebrija. When it was presented to Isabel de Castilla, she asked, "¿Para qué querría yo un trabajo como éste, si ya conozco la lengua?" ("What would I want a work like this for, if I already know the language?"), to which he replied, "Su alteza, la lengua es el instrumento del Imperio" ("Your highness, the language is the instrument of the Empire.")[citation needed]

From the 16th century onwards, the language was taken to the Americas and the Spanish East Indies via Spanish colonisation. Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra influence on the Spanish language from the 17th century has been so great that Spanish is often called la lengua de Cervantes (The language of Cervantes).[4]

In the 20th century, Spanish was introduced to Equatorial Guinea and the Western Sahara, and to areas of the United States that had not been part of the Spanish Empire, such as Spanish Harlem in New York City. For details on borrowed words and other external influences upon Spanish, see Influences on the Spanish language.

Geographic Distribution

Spanish is recognized as one of the official languages of the United Nations, the European Union, the Organization of American States, the Organization of Ibero-American States, the African Union, the Union of South American Nations, the Latin Union, and the Caricom and has legal status in the North American Free Trade Agreement.

See table of Spanish Language in Wikipedia


[[Image:4 800px-Study of spanish.svg.png‎[250px|thumb|left|Active learning of Spanish]] It is estimated that the combined total number of Spanish speakers is between 470 and 500 million, making it the third most spoken language by total number of speakers (after Chinese, and English). Spanish is the second most-widely spoken language in terms of native speakers.[62][63] Global internet usage statistics for 2007 show Spanish as the third most commonly used language on the Internet, after English and Chinese. [64]


Spanish spoken in the European Union
Spanish spoken in the European Union

In Europe, Spanish is an official language of Spain, the country after which it is named and from which it originated. It is also spoken in Gibraltar, though English is the official language.[65] Likewise, it is the most spoken language in Andorra, though Catalan is the official language.[66][67] It is also spoken by small communities in other European countries, such as the United Kingdom, France, and Germany.[68] Spanish is an official language of the European Union. In Switzerland, Spanish is the mother tongue of 1.7% of the population, representing the largest minority after the 4 official languages of the country.[69]


In Spain and in some parts of the Spanish speaking world, but not all, it is rare to use the term español (Spanish) to refer to this language, even when contrasting it with languages such as French and English. Rather, people call it castellano (Castilian), that is, the language of the Castile region, when contrasting it with other languages spoken in Spain such as Galician, Basque, and Catalan. In this manner, the Spanish Constitution of 1978 uses the term castellano to define the official language of the whole Spanish State, as opposed to las demás lenguas españolas (lit. the rest of the Spanish languages). Article III reads as follows:

El castellano es la lengua española oficial del Estado. (…) Las demás lenguas españolas serán también oficiales en las respectivas Comunidades Autónomas…
Castilian is the official Spanish language of the State. (…) The rest of the Spanish languages shall also be official in their respective Autonomous Communities…

However, to some in other linguistic regions, this is considered as demeaning to them and they will therefore use the term castellano exclusively.

The name castellano (Castilian), which refers directly to the origins of the language and the sociopolitical context in which it was introduced in the Americas, is preferred particularly in the Spanish regions where other languages are spoken (Catalonia, Basque Country, Valencian Community, Balearic Islands and Galicia) as well as in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela, instead of español, which is more commonly used to refer to the language as a whole in the rest of Latin America and Spain.

There is some controversy in Spain about the name of the language, which is a part of a greater controversy about Catalan, Basque and Galician nationalisms.


In Africa, Spanish is official in Equatorial Guinea (co-official with French and Portuguese), as well as an official language of the African Union. Today, in Western Sahara, it is a de facto official language and nearly 200,000 refugee Sahrawis are able to read and write in Spanish,[70] and several thousands have received university education in foreign countries as part of aid packages (mainly in Cuba and Spain). In Equatorial Guinea, Spanish is the predominant language when native and non-native speakers (around 500,000 people) are counted, while Fang is the most spoken language by number of native speakers.[71][72] It is also spoken in the Spanish cities in continental North Africa (Ceuta and Melilla) and in the autonomous community of Canary Islands (143,000 and 1,995,833 people, respectively). Within Northern Morocco, a former Franco-Spanish protectorate that is also geographically close to Spain, approximately 20,000 people speak Spanish as a second language.[73] It is spoken by some communities of Angola, because of the Cuban influence from the Cold War, and in Nigeria by the descendants of Afro-Cuban ex-slaves.


During Spanish control, it was an official language of the Philippines, until the change of Constitution in 1973. During most of the colonial period it was the language of government, trade and education, and spoken mainly by Spaniards and mestizos as a first language and more significantly as a second language by more than half of the indigenous population . However, by the mid 19th century a free public school system in Spanish was established throughout the islands, which increased the numbers of Spanish speakers. Following the U.S. occupation and administration of the islands, the strong Spanish influence amongst the Philippine population proved to be a major foe against the imposition of English by the American government, especially after the 1920s. The US authorities' conducted a campaign of solidifying English as the medium of instruction in schools, universities, and public spaces and prohibited the use of Spanish in media and educational institutions which gradually reduced the importance of the language generation after generation. After the country became independent in 1946, Spanish remained an official language along with English and Tagalog-based Filipino. However, the language lost its official status in 1973 during the Ferdinand Marcos administration. Under the Corazón Aquino administration which took office in 1986, the mandatory teaching of Spanish in colleges and universities was also stopped, and thus, younger generations of Filipinos have little or no knowledge of Spanish. The Spanish language retains a large influence in local languages, with many words coming from or being derived from European Spanish and Mexican Spanish, due to the control of the islands by Spain through Mexico City.[74] As of the 1990 Philippine census, only 2,660 people were reported to speak Spanish as a first language, with most speakers residing in Manila.[75] Moreover, close to four million people speak Spanish as a second language to date.

Spanish has made significant contributions to various Philippine languages such as Tagalog, Cebuano and other indigenous dialects and tongues. One of the 170 languages in the Philippines is a Spanish-based creole called Chavacano, spoken in majority by people (ca. 750 000) from the Zamboanga area. Though the indigenous grammatical structure of the national language was retained, over 5000 Spanish loanwords have found their way into the vocabulary of Filipino. Since 2009 Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, a fluent Spanish speaker and current President of the Philippines has ordered the re-establishment of Spanish in the education system plus there is now the daily programme "Filipinas Ahora Mismo" presented by Bon Vivar, produced in Spanish and broadcast on Radio Pilipinas.


Among the countries and territories in Oceania, Spanish is also spoken in Easter Island, a territorial possession of Chile. The U.S. Territories of Guam and Northern Marianas, and the independent states of Palau, Marshall Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia all once had Spanish speakers, since the Marianas and the Caroline Islands were Spanish colonial possessions until the late 19th century (see Spanish-American War), but Spanish has since been forgotten. It now only exists as an influence on the local native languages and is spoken by Hispanic American resident populations.


Latin America

Most Spanish speakers are in Latin America; of all countries with a majority of Spanish speakers, only Spain and Equatorial Guinea are outside the Americas. Mexico has the most native speakers of any country. Nationally, Spanish is the official language—either de facto or de jure—of Argentina, Bolivia (co-official with Quechua and Aymara), Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico , Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas), Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay (co-official with Guaraní[76]), Peru (co-official with Quechua and, in some regions, Aymara), Uruguay, and Venezuela. Spanish is also the official language (co-official with English) in the U.S. commonwealth of Puerto Rico.[77]

Spanish has no official recognition in the former British colony of Belize; however, per the 2000 census, it is spoken by 43% of the population.[78][79] Mainly, it is spoken by the descendants of Hispanics who have been in the region since the 17th century; however, English is the official language.[80]

Spain colonized Trinidad and Tobago first in 1498, introducing the Spanish language to the Carib people. Also the Cocoa Panyols, laborers from Venezuela, took their culture and language with them; they are accredited with the music of "Parang" ("Parranda") on the island. Because of Trinidad's location on the South American coast, the country is greatly influenced by its Spanish-speaking neighbors. A recent census shows that more than 1 500 inhabitants speak Spanish.[81] In 2004, the government launched the Spanish as a First Foreign Language (SAFFL) initiative in March 2005.[82] Government regulations require Spanish to be taught, beginning in primary school, while thirty percent of public employees are to be linguistically competent within five years.[81]

Spanish is important in Brazil because of its proximity to and increased trade with its Spanish-speaking neighbors, and because of its membership in the Mercosur trading bloc.[83] In 2005, the National Congress of Brazil approved a bill, signed into law by the President, making Spanish language teaching mandatory in both public and private secondary schools in Brazil.[84] In many border towns and villages (especially in the Uruguayan-Brazilian and Paraguayan-Brazilian border areas), a mixed language known as Portuñol is spoken.[85]

United States

Spanish spoken in the United States
Spanish spoken in the United States

In the 2006 census, 44.3 million people of the U.S. population were Hispanic or Latino by origin;[86] 34 million people, 12.2 percent, of the population more than five years old speak Spanish at home.[87] Spanish has a long history in the United States because many south-western states and Florida were part of Mexico and Spain, and it recently has been revitalized by Hispanic immigrants. Spanish is the most widely taught language in the country after English. Although the United States has no formally designated "official languages," Spanish is formally recognized at the state level in various states besides English; in the U.S. state of New Mexico for instance, 40% of the population speaks the language. It also has strong influence in metropolitan areas such as Los Angeles, Miami, San Antonio, New York City, and in the last decade, the language has rapidly expanded in Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Detroit, Houston, Phoenix, Richmond, Washington, DC, and other major Sun-Belt cities. Spanish is the dominant spoken language in Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory. With a total of 33,701,181 Spanish (Castilian) speakers, according to US Census Bureau,[88] the U.S. has the world's second-largest Spanish-speaking population.[89] Spanish ranks second, behind English, as the language spoken most widely at home.[90]

Dialectal variation

Countries that feature voseo, in blue. The deeper the blue is, the more predominant voseo is. Countries where voseo is a regionalism are in green; countries without voseo are in red.
Countries that feature voseo, in blue. The deeper the blue is, the more predominant voseo is. Countries where voseo is a regionalism are in green; countries without voseo are in red.
Cervantes Institute Headquarters in Madrid,Spain
Cervantes Institute Headquarters in Madrid,Spain

While all Spanish dialects use the same written standard, there are important variations spoken among the regions of Spain and throughout Spanish-speaking America. One major phonological difference between Castilian, broadly speaking, the dialects spoken in northern Spain, and the dialects of southern Spain and all the Latin American dialects of Spanish, is the absence of a voiceless dental fricative (/θ/ as in English thing) in the latter.[91] In Spain, the Castilian dialect is commonly regarded as the standard variety used on radio and television,[93][94][95], although attitudes towards southern dialects have changed significantly in the last 50 years. In addition to variations in pronunciation, minor lexical and grammatical differences exist. For example, loísmo is the use of slightly different pronouns and differs from the standard.

The variety with the most speakers is Mexican Spanish. It is spoken by more than the twenty percent of the Spanish speakers (107 millions of the total 494 millions, according to the table above). One of its main features is the reduction or loss of the unstressed vowels, mainly when they are in contact with the sound /s/.[96][97] It can be the case that the words: pesos, pesas, and peces are pronounced the same ['pesə̥s].


Spanish has three second-person singular pronouns: tú, usted, and vos. The use of the pronoun vos and/or its verb forms is called voseo.


Vos is the subject form (vos decís) [you say] and object of a preposition (a vos digo) [to you I say], while "os" is the direct object form (os vi) [I saw you (all)] and indirect object without express preposition (os digo) [I say to you (all)].[98]

Since vose is historically the 2nd-person plural, verbs are conjugated as such despite the fact the word now refers to a single person:

«Han luchado, añadió dirigiéndose a Tarradellas, [...] por mantenerse fieles a las instituciones que vos representáis» (GaCandau Madrid-Barça [Esp. 1996]).

The possessive form is vuestro: Admiro vuestra valentía, señora. Adjectives, when used in conjunction with vos, do not agree with the pronoun but instead with the real referents in gender and number: Vos, don Pedro, sois caritativo; Vos, bellas damas, sois ingeniosas.[98]

Two main types of voseo may be distinguished: reverential and American dialectal. In archaic solemn usage, voseo expressed special reverence and could be used to address both the second person singular and the second person plural. In contrast, the more commonly known American form of voseo is always used to address only one speaker and implies closeness and familiarity.[98] Unlike the first type, the second one need not involve vos and may instead be expressed simply in the use of the plural form of the verb (even in combination with the pronoun tú).

The pronominal voseo employs the use of vos as a pronoun to replace tú and de ti, which are second-person singular informal. [98]

  • As a subject vos employs: «Puede que vos tengás razón» (Herrera Casa [Ven. 1985]) instead of «Puede que tú tengas razón»
  • As a vocative: «¿Por qué vos la tenés contra Alvaro Arzú ?» (Prensa [Guat.] 3.4.97) instead of «¿Por qué tú la tienes contra Alvaro Arzú?»
  • As a term of preposition: «Cada vez que sale con vos, se enferma» (Penerini Aventura [Arg. 1999]) instead of «Cada vez que sale contigo, se enferma»
  • And as a term of comparison: «Es por lo menos tan actor como vos» (Cuzzani Cortés [Arg. 1988]) instead of «Es por lo menos tan actor como tú»

However, for the pronombre átono (that which uses the pronominal verbs and its complements without preposition) and for the possessive, they employ the forms of tuteo (te, tu, and tuyo), respectively: «Vos te acostaste con el tuerto» (Gené Ulf [Arg. 1988]); «Lugar que odio [...] como te odio a vos» (Rossi María [C. Rica 1985]); «No cerrés tus ojos» (Flores Siguamonta [Guat. 1993]). In other words, in the previous examples the authors conjugate the pronoun subject vos with the pronominal verbs and its complements of tú.[98]

The verbal voseo consists of the use of the second person plural, more or less modified, for the conjugated forms of the second person singular: vos vivís, vos comés. The verbal paradigm of voseante is characterized by its complexity. On the one hand, it affects, to a distinct extent, each verbal tense. On the other hand, it varies in functions of geographic and social factors and not all the forms are accepted in cultured norms.[98]

Extension in Latin America

Vos is used extensively as the primary spoken form of the second-person singular pronoun, although with wide differences in social consideration. Generally, it can be said that there are zones of exclusive use of tuteo in the following areas: almost all of Mexico, the West Indies, Panama, the majority of Peru and Venezuela, Coastal Ecuador and; the Atlantic coast of Colombia. They alternate tuteo as a cultured form and voseo as a popular or rural form in: Bolivia, north and south of Peru, Andean Ecuador, small zones of the Venezuelan Andes, a great part of Colombia, and the oriental border of Cuba.

Tuteo exists as an intermediate formality of treatment and voseo as a familiar treatment in: Chile, the Venezuelan state of Zulia, the Pacific coast of Colombia, Central America, and the Mexican states of Tabasco and Chiapas.

Areas of generalized voseo include Argentina, Costa Rica, Bolivia (east), El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Uruguay and the Colombian region of Antioquia. [98]


Spanish forms also differ regarding second-person plural pronouns. "Usted" (Ud.) was initially the written abbreviation of "vuestra merced" (your grace). The Spanish dialects of Latin America have only one form of the second-person plural for daily use, ustedes (formal or familiar, as the case may be, though vosotros non-formal usage can sometimes appear in poetry and rhetorical or literary style). In Spain there are two forms — ustedes (formal) and vosotros (familiar). The pronoun vosotros is the plural form of tú in most of Spain, but in the Americas (and in certain southern Spanish cities such as Cádiz and in the Canary Islands) it is replaced with ustedes. It is notable that the use of ustedes for the informal plural "you" in southern Spain does not follow the usual rule for pronoun–verb agreement; e.g., while the formal form for "you go", ustedes van, uses the third-person plural form of the verb, in Cádiz or Seville the informal form is constructed as ustedes vais, using the second-person plural of the verb. In the Canary Islands, though, the usual pronoun–verb agreement is preserved in most cases.


Some words can be different, even significantly so, in different Hispanophone countries. Most Spanish speakers can recognize other Spanish forms, even in places where they are not commonly used, but Spaniards generally do not recognize specifically American usages. For example, Spanish mantequilla, aguacate and albaricoque (respectively, 'butter', 'avocado', 'apricot') correspond to manteca, palta, and damasco, respectively, in Argentina, Chile (except manteca), Paraguay, Peru (except manteca and damasco), and Uruguay. The everyday Spanish words coger ('to catch'), pisar ('to step on') and concha ('seashell') are considered extremely rude in parts of Latin America, where the meaning of coger and pisar is also "to have sex" and concha means "vulva". The Puerto Rican word for "bobby pin" (pinche) is an obscenity in Mexico, but in Nicaragua simply means "stingy", and in Spain refers to a chef's helper. Other examples include taco, which means "swearword" (among other meanings) in Spain and "traffic" in Chile, but is known to the rest of the world as a Mexican dish. Pija in many countries of Latin America and Spain itself is an obscene slang word for "penis", while in Spain the word also signifies "posh girl" or "snobby". Coche, which means "car" in Spain, central Mexico and Argentina, for the vast majority of Spanish-speakers actually means "baby-stroller", while carro means "car" in some Latin American countries and "cart" in others, as well as in Spain. Papaya is the slang term in Cuba for "vagina" therefore in Cuba when referring to the actual fruit Cubans call it fruta bomba instead.[99][100]

Royal Spanish Academy

The Royal Spanish Academy Headquarters in Madrid, Spain
The Royal Spanish Academy Headquarters in Madrid, Spain

The Real Academia Española (Royal Spanish Academy), together with the 21 other national ones (see Association of Spanish Language Academies), exercises a standardizing influence through its publication of dictionaries and widely respected grammar and style guides.[citation needed] Because of influence and for other sociohistorical reasons, a standardized form of the language (Standard Spanish) is widely acknowledged for use in literature, academic contexts and the media.[citation needed]

For more articles, see External Link below.

See also

  • Arabic influence on the Spanish language
  • Chavacano language
  • Certificate of Use of Language in Spanish
  • Countries where Spanish is an official language
  • Differences between Spanish and Portuguese
  • Frespañol
  • Hispanic culture
  • Hispanophone
  • Instituto Cervantes
  • Latin Union
  • List of English words of Spanish origin
  • List of Spanish words of Germanic origin
  • List of words having different meanings in Spain and Latin America
  • Llanito
  • Names given to the Spanish language
  • Palenquero
  • Panhispanism
  • Papiamento
  • Portuñol
  • Real Academia Española
  • Romance languages
  • Spanglish
  • Spanish-based creole languages
  • Spanish language poets
  • Spanish profanity
  • Spanish proverbs


  • 1. Spanish language total. Ethnologue. Retrieved 14 August 2009.
  • 2. Ethnologue: Languages of the World, 16th Edition, ed. M. Paul Lewis 2009
  • 3. "Concise Oxford Companion to the English Language". Oxford University Press. Retrieved 24 July 2008.
  • 4. (in Spanish) (PDF) La lengua de Cervantes. Ministerio de la Presidencia de España. Retrieved 2008-08-24.
  • 5. UN (2009 estimate)
  • 6. Britannica encyclopedia [1]
  • 7. eurobarometer (2006), [2] for Europe countries
  • 8. Spanish students for countries out of Europe according to Instituto Cervantes 06-07 (There aren't concrete sources about Spanish speakers as a second language except to Europe and Latin America countries).
  • 9. Demografía de la lengua española (page 28) to countries with official spanish status.
  • 10. CONAPO (2010).
  • 11. Population figure for 2008 from U.S. Population in 1990, 2000, and 2008, U.S. Census Bureau
  • 12. 34,559,894 legal hispanics older than 5 years old (US Census 2008)+ 8,300,000 illegal immigrants (Pew Hispanic Center 2008,, They aren't new generations of immigrants living in USA as many of the legal immigrants).
  • 13. Significant figure about the legal Hispanic population (46,943,613 from a total US population of 304,059,724) Census Bureau 2008
  • 14. I Acta Internacional de la Lengua Española (2007): noticias en, Academia Norteamericana de la Lengua Española:, José Ma. Ansón: noticias, Jorge Ramos Avalos:, Vázquez Medel:
  • 15. According to the U.S. census ( 3,600,000 in primary school, 3,220,000 in secondary school and 1,000,000 in the University
  • 16. INE, (1/1/2009)
  • 17. 89.0% speak Spanish as a first language (eurobarometer (2006))
  • 18. DANE
  • 19. INDEC (2009)
  • 20. INE (January, 2010)
  • 21. INEI (2010)
  • 22. INE (Chile - 2010)
  • 23. INEC (January, 2010)
  • 24. 50% of 733,000 foreigners in Brazil are from Mercosur (Page 32 + 78,505 spanish immigrants (INE (1/1/2009)).
  • 25., More than 1 million of spanish students in the private school and almost 11 million estimated for 2010 in the public school (Instituto Cervantes).
  • 26. INE (2010)
  • 27. Census 2010 estimation (page 32)
  • 28. INE
  • 29. 1% of 44,010,619 (population of France older than 15 years in 2005). Source: Eurobarometer 2006. There are 179,678 immigrants from Spain according to INE (1/1/2009)
  • 30.
  • 31. Between 4 and 7 million speakers (Ammadi, 2002) [3]
  • 32. 95,10% of the population speaks Spanish (U.S. Census Bureau)
  • 33. 59,017 immigrants from Spain (Spanish census 2001) + 48,637 immigrants from Colombia. Open Channels and Colombian consul (1999)
  • 34. Ethnologue. There are 2,532 immigrants from Spain accordind toINE (1/1/2009)
  • 35. 1,816,773 Spanish + 1,200,000 Spanish creole: Antonio Quilis "La lengua española en Filipinas", 1996 pag.234, (page 23), (page 249),, The figure 2,900,000 Spanish speakers, we can find in "Pluricentric languages: differing norms in different nations" (page 45 by R.W.Thompson), or in More than 2 million Spanish speakers and around 3 million with Chavacano speakers according to "Instituto Cervantes de Manila" (
  • 36. Britannica Book of the Year 1998 [4]. There are 103,063 immigrants from Spain according to INE (1/1/2009)
  • 37. 14,905 Spanish (Census 2001) + 75,000 from Ecuador [5]
  • 38. Equatorial Guinea census (2009)
  • 39. PMB Statistics Although Canada Census told about 345,345 people who speaks Spanish in 2006, Hispanic organizations claim about 520,260 Hispanics in 2001, and more than 700,000 in 2006 (,, and currently there are near 1 million: (,
  • 40. Spanish (census 2001)
  • 41. 1% of 8,598,982 (population of Belgium older than 15 years in 2005). Source: Eurobarometer 2006
  • 42. Sweden Census SCB (2002)
  • 43. Page 32 of the "Demogeafía de la lengua española". 104,000 according to Britannica Book of the Year 2003
  • 44. Page 32 of the "Demografía de la lengua española" + 33,913 students according to Anuario Instituto Cervantes 06-07
  • 45. Page 32 of "Demogeafía de la lengua española"
  • 46. students according to Anuario Instituto Cervantes 06-07
  • 47. Between 150,000 and 200,000 in Tinduf ( + 48,000 in Wilaya of Oran (page 31 of Demografía de la lengua española)
  • 48. 50,000 sefardíes (Britannica Book of the Year 1998)[6] + 80,000 from Iberoamerica[7]
  • 49. Pages 34, 35 of the "Demografía de la lengua española".
  • 50. Britannica Book of the Year 1998 [8]
  • 51.
  • 52. Immigrants from Spanish speaking countries [9]
  • 53. Page 32 of Demografía de la lengua española
  • 54. Page 32 of Demografía de la lengua española
  • 55. 35.4% speak Spanish as a first language
  • 56.
  • 57. Spanish 1970 census [10]
  • 58. New Zealand census (2006)
  • 59. Page 37 of theDemografía de la lengua española
  • 60. There are 2,397,380 immigrants from Spain and Latin America according to the page 37 of the "Demografía de la lengua española" (997,849 already counted)
  • 61. According to the Instituto Cervantes, there are 14 million of spanish students. But there are already counted sudents from U.S. (6,000,000) because it is considered the current 7,820,000 students, E.U (3,385,000) because they are considered in the eurobarometer figures (demografía del español (page 37), Brazil (1 mill.) with 11 million new students in the public schools, Morocco (58.382) and Phillippines (20,492), Canada (92,853), Australia (33,913), Ivory Coast (235,806), Switzerland (14,420), Japan (60,000), Senegal (101.455), Occ. Sáhara (25,800), Norway (23,677), Russia (13,122) and China (12,835).
  • 62. "Most widely spoken Languages in the World". Nations Online. Retrieved 2009-08-27.
  • 63. CIA The World Factbook United States
  • 64. "Internet World Users by Language". Miniwatts Marketing Group. 2008.
  • 65. CIA World Factbook — Gibraltar
  • 66. "Andorra — People". Andorra — People. MSN Encarta. Retrieved 2007-08-20.
  • 67. "Background Note: Andorra". U.S. Department of State: Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs. January 2007. Retrieved 2007-08-20.
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External links

  • Wikipedia article on Spanish language
  • (Spanish) Dictionary of the RAE Real Academia Española's official Spanish language dictionary
  • Spanish – BBC Languages
  • English - Spanish - altogether 260348 entries.
  • Spanish evolution from Latin
  • Spanish phrasebook on WikiTravel
  • The Project Gutenberg EBook of a first Spanish reader by Erwin W. Roessler and Alfred Remy.

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