English is the identity of the United States of America, and its impact is so immense that many people across the world do not know about the other languages spoken here. The world might be surprised to find that as many as 349 languages and dialects other than English are expressed in the USA on a regular basis. The number of people speaking some of these languages is higher than the population of some countries of the world. Yes, the USA is a multilingual society in every sense of the word.
In this article, you will get to know about some of the crucial languages that a relatively large populace of the USA speaks:
- Spanish- After English, Spanish is the second most spoken language in the US. Almost 17 percent of Americans speak Spanish fluently. Yes, you read that right. A lot of people know that Spanish is a relatively popular language in the US, but 17 percent or 1 in 6 is an astonishingly high figure. Even Americans are a little surprised when they find out this fact for the very first time. People in most of the bigger, multicultural cities of the USA have a decent understanding of Spanish because of the reasonably high Hispanic population. In places like Miami, the number of Spanish speakers is almost as much as the English speaking population. Even non-Hispanic people in Miami understand Spanish pretty well.
- Cajun French- It is also one of the most widely spoken languages in the entire USA. Cajun French is similar to the French that you might hear in Paris, but there are many differences. It is a dialect under the larger umbrella of French as far as languages are concerned. Louisiana has the most significant percentage of the populace that speaks Cajun French. It would not be easy for you if you lived in Louisiana and did not have a working understanding of Cajun French.
- Cantonese- If you have ever been to any of the China towns in the USA, then you would have understood the significance of Cantonese. The USA has a decent population of people of Chinese origin, and most of them speak Cantonese. In most China Towns all the necessary daily communication takes place in Cantonese. It is reflective of the substantial immigrant population from China. The number of Chinese in the USA who speak Mandarin is somewhat less, but the Mandarin-speaking community is apparently on the rise.
- Sea Island Creole English aka Gullah- It is a combo of English and some Congo-Niger languages. A substantial population in North, as well as South Carolina, speaks this language. ‘Gullah’ is a term that is used to represent not only the Sea Island Creole English but also people who talk about this language.
- Pennsylvanian German- As the name suggests, a lot of people of Amish origins in Pennsylvania are fluent in this dialect. However, Amish people from outside Pennsylvania also speak Pennsylvanian Dutch (as it is popularly called). It is very similar to German, and it is not easy for a non-German speaker to understand the difference between them.