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Index of languages by language family

This is a list of the languages featured on Omniglot arranged by the language families they belong to, with details of each language family.

Afroasiatic languages

The Afroasiatic language family includes around 375 languages which are spoken by over 350 million people in the Middle East, North Africa and parts of the Sahel. These languages are also known as Afro-Asiatic, Afrasian or Hamito-Semitic / Chamito-Semitic.

Berber languages
Ancient Berber, Guanche, Kabyle, Tamazight, Tuareg
Chadic languages
Cushitic languages
Afaan-Oromo, Afar, Awngi, Beja, Blin, Somali, Xamtanga
Egyptian languages
Ancient Egyptian, Coptic
Omotic languages
Bench, Dizin, Wolaytta
Semitic languages
Akkadian, Amharic, Arabic (Algerian), Arabic (Egyptian), Arabic (Lebanese), Arabic (Modern Standard), Arabic (Moroccan), Arabic (Syrian), Aramaic, Argobba, Assyrian / Neo-Assyrian, Canaanite, Chaha, Chaldean Neo-Aramaic, Ge'ez, Hadhramautic, Hebrew, Himyaritic, Jewish Neo-Aramaic, Maltese, Mandaic, Nabataean, Neo-Mandaic, Phoenician, Punic, Qatabanic, Sabaean, Sabaic, Silt'e, Syriac, Tigre, Tigrinya, Turoyo, Ugaritic, Western Neo-Aramaic

More information about the Afroasiatic languages

Algonqian languages

There are about 30 Algonquian languages spoken by between 90,000 and 130,000 people in southern Canada and northern parts of the USA. They are also known as Algic or Algonkian languages.

Algonquian languages

More information about the Algonquian languages

Altaic languages

The Altaic language family is a proposed grouping of some 65 languages spoken by about 250 million people in northeast Asia, central Asia, Anatolia and eastern Europe.

Japonic / Japanese-Ryukyuan languages
Japanese, Okinawan
Koreanic languages
Mongolic languages
Buryat, Kalmyk, Mongolian
Tungusic / Manchu-Tungus languages
Even, Evenki, Jurchen, Manchu, Nanai, Oroch, Orok / Uilta, Ulch, Xibe
Turkic languages

More information about Altaic languages


Arawakan languages

There are 59 Arawakan langauges spoken by about 500,000 people in parts of South and Central America and on Caribbean islands. They are also known as Arahuacan, Maipuran or Maipurean languages.

Arawakan/Maipurean languages
Arawak, Asháninka, Baniwa, Caquinte, Garifuna, Tariana, Wayuu

More information about Arawakan languages

Austroasiatic languages

The 169 Austroasiatic languages are spoken by about 80 million people in Southeast Asia, India, Bangladesh and southern parts of China.

Khmer, Vietnamese, Wa
Munda languages
Gadaba, Ho, Kurukh, Mundari, Santali, Sora

More information about Austroasiatic languages

Australian languages

There are 264 Aboriginal languages in Australia classified as belonging to 27 different languages families, and also a number of language isolates. They are spoken by a total of around 50,000 people.

Mirndi languages
Jaminjung, Jingulu
Pama-Nyungan languages
Alyawarr, Gumatj, Guugu Yalandji, Kala Lagaw Ya, Martu Wangka, Ngaanyatjarra, Warlpiri

More information about Australian Aboriginal languages

Austronesian languages

The 1,257 Austronesian languages are spoken by about 300 million people in the islands of Southeast Asia and the Pacific, and in Madagascar. Some of them are also spoken on the Southeast Asian mainland. They are thought originate in Taiwan.

Formosan languages
Amis, Atayal
Malayo-Polynesian languages

More information about the Austronesian languages


Aymaran languages

The Aymaran is a small family of languages spoken in central parts of the Andes mainly in Bolivia, and also in Peru, Chile and Argentina. There are some 2.5 million speakers of these languages, almost all of whom speak Aymara.

Aymaran languages

More information about the Aymaran languages

Barbacoan languages

The Barbacoan languages are spoken by about 248,000 people in northern Ecador and southern Columbia.

Barbacoan languages
Cha'palaachi, Guambiano

More information about the Barbacoan languages

Cariban languages

The Cariban languages are spoken in parts of Venezuela, Colombia, Suriname, Guyana and Brazil. Most only have a hundred speakers, but one, Macushi, is spoken by 30,000 people.

Cariban languages
Akurio, Hixkaryána, Tiriyó

More information about the Cariban languages

Cahuapanan languages

There are just two Cahuapanan languages, Chayahuita and Jebero, which are spoken about 10,400 people in Peru.

Cahuapanan languages

More information about the Cahuapanan languages

Caucasian languages

The languages of the Caucasus region are grouped into three families, which are not related to one another: Northeast, Northwest and South Caucasian. The Northeast Caucasian languages are spoken by about 3.8 million people in the Russian republics of Dagestan and Chechnya, the disputed region of Ingushetia, and in northern Azerbaijan and northeastern Georgia. The Northwest Caucasian languages have about 2.5 million speakers in Adygea, Kabardino-Balkaria, Karachay-Cherkessia, and Abkhazia in the Russian Federation, and also in Turkey. The South Caucasian or Kartvelian languages have some 5.2 million speakers in Georgia and neighbouring parts of Russia.

Northeast Caucasian languages
Aghul, Akhvakh, Andi, Archi, Avar, Bagvalal, Bats, Botlikh, Budukh, Caucasian Albanian, Chamalal, Chechen, Dargwa, Godoberi, Hinukh, Hunzib, Ingush, Karata, Khinalug, Khwarshi, Kryts, Kubachi, Lak, Lezgian, Rutul, Tabassaran, Tindi, Tsakhur, Tsez, Udi
Northwest Caucasian languages
Abaza, Abhkaz, Adyghe, Kabardian, Ubykh
South Caucasian / Kartvelian languages
Georgian, Laz, Mingrelian, Svan

More information about the Caucasian languages


Chibchan languages

The Chibchan languages are spoken in parts of Colombia, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama.

Chibchan languages

More information about Chibchan languages

Dravidian languages

The 85 Dravidian languages are spoken by around 215 million people mainly in southern India and parts of eastern and central India, and also in northeastern Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal and Bangladesh.

Dravidian languages
Badaga, Brahui, Gondi, Jatapu, Kannada, Kodava, Kolam, Konda, Koya, Kurukh, Malayalam, Mukha Dora, Sankethi, Savara, Sunuwar, Tamil, Telugu, Tulu, Yerukula

More information about Dravidian languages

Eskimo-Aleut languages

There are eleven Eskimo-Aleut languges spoken in Greenland, northern Canada, northern Alaska, and on the Chukchi Peninsula in eastern Siberia by about 77,415 people. They are also known as Eskaleutian, Eskaleutic, or Inuit-Yupik-Unangan.

Eskimo-Aleut languages
Aleut, Greenlandic, Inuktitut, Iñupiaq, Yup'ik

More information about Eskimo-Aleut languages


Guaicuruan languages

There are five Guaicuruan languages spoken by about 48,590 people in northern Argentina, western Paraguay, and in Mato Grosso do Sul in Brazil. They are also known as Guaykuruan, Waikurúan, Guaycuruano, Guaikurú, Guaicurú, or Guaycuruana languages.

Guaicuruan languages
Toba Qom

More information about Guaicuruan languages


Hmong-Mien languages

The Hmong-Mien, or Miao-Yao, language family consists of 38 languages spoken by about 7-10 million people in southern China, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Burma.

Hmong, Iu Mien

More information about Hmong-Mien languages

Indo-European languages

The 445 or so Indo-European languages have about 3 billion native speakers and many more second and foreign language speakers. They are are spoken in most of Europe, parts of the Middle East, South and Central Asia, the Americas, Australia, New Zealand, and many parts of Africa.

Albanian languages
Albanian, Arvanitic
Armenian languages
Baltic languages
Latgalian, Latvian, Lithuanian
Celtic languages
Breton, Celtiberian, Cornish, Irish, Lepontic, Lusitanian, Manx, Scottish Gaelic, Tartessian, Welsh
Germanic languages
Afrikaans, Alsatian, Bavarian, Cimbrian, Danish, Dutch, Elfdalian, English, Faroese, Flemish, German, Gothic, Icelandic, Low German / Low Saxon, Luxembourgish, Norn, North Frisian, Norwegian, Old English, Old Norse, Pennsylvania German, Saterland Frisian, Scots, Shetland(ic), Swedish, Swiss German, West Frisian, Yiddish
Hellenic languages
Indo-Iranian languages
Indo-Aryan languages
Awadhi, Assamese, Bengali, Bhojpuri, Chakma, Dhivehi, Gujarati, Hindi, Kashmiri, Konkani, Kotia, Kutchi, Maithili, Marathi, Marwari, Modi, Nepali, Odia, Punjabi, Rajasthani, Romany, Saraiki, Sarnámi Hindustani, Sindhi, Sinhala, Sourashtra, Sugali, Sylheti, Urdu
Iranian languages
Avestan, Baluchi, Dari, Gilaki, Juhuri, Kurdish, Mazandarani, Ossetian, Persian, Parthian, Pashto, Sarikoli, Shabaki, Shughni, Tajik, Talysh, Tat, Wakhi, Yaghnobi, Zazaki
Romance languages
Aragonese, Aranese, Aromanian, Asturian, Catalan, Corsican, Franco-Provençal, French, Friulian, Galician, Gallo, Genoese, Guernésiais, Italian, Jèrriais, Ladino, Ladin, Latin, Lombard, Megleno-Romanian, Mirandese, Moldovan, Occitan, Piedmontese, Portuguese, Romanian, Romansh, Sardinian, Sicilian, Spanish, Venetian, Walloon
Slavic languages
Belarusian, Bosnian, Bulgarian, Croatian, Czech, Kashubian, Macedonian, Montenegrin, Old Church Slavonic, Polish, Russian, Rusyn, Serbian, Silesian, Slovak, Slovenian, Sorbian, Ukrainian, West Polesian

More information about Indo-European languages


Iroquoian languages

There are seven Iroquoian languages in parts of the eastern and northeastern USA and southeastern Canada by about 386,000 people.

Iroquoian languages
Cayuga, Cherokee, Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Tuscarora, Wynadot

More information about Iroquoian languages

Japonic / Japanese-Ryukyuan languages

The Japonic or Japanese-Ryukyuan languages are spoken in Japan by about 122 million people. There are 12 of them, the largest of which is Japanese.

Japonic / Japanese-Ryukyuan languages
Japanese, Okinawan

More information about Japonic languages

Jivaroan languages

There are four Jivaroan languages spoken by about 85,630 in northern Peru and eastern Ecuador. It is also known as Hívaro, Jívaro, Jibaroana, or Jibaro.

Jivaroan languages

More information about Jivaroan languages

Khoisan languages

The Khoisan languages are spoken in Tanzania, Namibia, Botswana, South Africa, Angola, Botswana, and Zambia by about 346,000 people.

Khoisan languages
Khoekhoe (Nama), Nǁng (Nǁŋǃke)

More information about Khoisan languages

Mayan languages

There 31 Mayan languages spoken by over 7 million people mainly in southern Mexico, Guatemala, Belize and Honduras, and also in El Salvador.

Mayan languages
Aguacateco, Huasteco, Ixil, Kaqchikel, Ki'che', Mam, Q’anjob’al, Q'eqchi', Tsotsil, Tzeltal, Yucatec Maya

More information about Mayan languages

Misumalpan languages

The Misumalpan language family consists of three languages spoken by about 192,000 people on the east coast of Nicaragua and neighbouring areas. They are also known as Misumalpa or Misuluan languages.

Misumalpan languages

More information about Misumalpan languages

Muskogean languages

There are six Muskogean languages spoken by about 17,000 people in parts of Oklahoma, Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida, Texas and Tennessee in the USA.

Muskogean languages
Alabama, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, Koasati, Mikasuki

More information about Muskogean languages


Na-Dene languages

The Na-Dene grouping of languages includes the Athabaskan languages, Eyak and Tlingit languages, and possibly the Yeniseian languages of Siberia. These languages are spoken by about 180,000 people in Alsaka, northwestern Canada, southwestern parts of the USA, and in central Siberia. This grouping is somewhat controversial, and is also known as Nadene, Na-Dené, Athabaskan-Eyak-Tlingit or Tlina-Den.

Na-Dene languages
Apache, Chipewyan, Eyak, Gwich'in, Hän, Jicarilla, Mescalero-Chiricahua, Navajo, Tłı̨chǫ (Dogrib)

More information about Na-Dene languages

Niger-Congo languages

With some 1,400 members, the Niger-Congo language family is the largest in the world. They are spoken in most of sub-Saharan Africa by around 600 million people.

Atlantic-Congo languages
Mankanya, Mbum, Supyire
Bak languages
Bantu languages
Bemba, Chichewa, Duala, Ewondo, Ganda/Luganda, Herero, Kikuyu, Kinyarwanda, Kirundi, Lingala, Loma, Lozi, Mandekan, Mende, Northern Ndebele, Northern Sotho, OshiWambo, Ronga, Shona, Soga, Southern Ndebele, Southern Sotho, Swahili, Swati, Tofa, Tshiluba, Tsonga, Tswana, Tumbuka, Umbundu, Venda, Xhosa, Zulu
Bantoid languages
Gur languages
Dagaare, Dagbani, Mossi
Kru languages
Kwa languages
Akan, Ga, Twi
Mande languages
Bambara, Kpelle, Loma, Mandinka, Mende, Soninke, Susu, Vai
Senegambian languages
Fula(ni), Wolof
Volta-Niger languages
Ewe, Fon, Igbo, Yorùbá

More information about Niger-Congo languages


Nilo-Saharan languages

The Nilo-Saharan language family consists of around 200 languages which are spoken in central and east Africa by about 50 million people, particularly along the River Nile and in central parts of the Sahara.

Nilo-Saharan languages
Acholi, Alur, Dholuo, Dinka, Kanuri, Karamojong, Maasai, Nuer, Shilluk, Zarma

More information about Nilo-Saharan languages

Oto-Manguean languages

The Oto-Manguean languages are spoken by about 2 million people in central Mexico in the states of Oaxaca, Mexico, Hidalgo, Querétaro. They were formerly spoken in Nicaragua, El Salvador and Costa Rica.

Oto-Manguean languages
Chinanteco, Mazahua, Mazatec, Mixtec, Otomi, Zapotec

More information about Oto-Manguean languages

Panoan languages

There are about 20 Panoan languages spoken by about 40,000 people in parts of Peru, western Brazil and Bolivia.

Panoan languages
Amahuaca | Kashinawa

More information about Panoan languages

Peba-Yagua languages

The Peba-Yaguan languages were spoken in northwestern parts of the Amazon. The only surviving member of this language family is Yagua, which is spoken in northeastern Peru. The other members, Peba and Yameo, are extinct.

Peba-Yagua languages

More information about Panoan languages

Quechuan languages

The Quechuan language family consists of 46 languages spoken by about 8-10 million people mainly in Peru, Ecuador and Boliva, and also in Argentina and Colombia. The Quechuan languages are the most widely-spoken indigenous languages in South America.

Quechuan languages
Ayacucho Quechua, Quechua

More information about Quechuan languages

Sino-Tibetan languages

There are over 400 Sino-Tibetan languages spoken by over a billion people in East Asia, Southeast Asia and parts of South Asia.

Sinitic (Chinese) languages
Dungan, Cantonese, Fuzhounese, Gan, Hakka, Mandarin, Puxian, Shanghainese, Taiwanese, Teochew, Wenzhounese, Xiang
Tibeto-Burman languages
Burmese, Dzongkha, Garo, Karbi, Kayah Li, Karen, Ladakhi, Lepcha, Limbu, Lisu, Manipuri, Marma, Mizo, Mro, Naxi, Nepal Bhasa / Newari, Sunuwar, Tangut, Tibetan, Tshangla, Tujia, Yi

More information about Sino-Tibetan languages

Siouan languages

There are 14 Siouan languages spoken mainly in central parts of the USA and Canada by about 20,000 people. This language family is also known as Siouan-Catawban.

Siouan languages
Crow, Dakota, Lakota, Omaha, Osage, Winnebago

More information about the Siouan languages

Tai-Kaidai languages

The Tai-Kaidai languages includes 95 languages spoken in southern China and Southeast Asia by about 85 million people. This language family is also known as Daic, Kadai, Kradai or Kra-Dai.

Tai-Kaidai languages
Ahom, Bouyei, Dehong Dai, Kam, Lanna, Lao, Lue, Shan, Tai Dam, Thai, Zhuang

More information about the Tai-Kaidai languages

Tucanoan languages

Tucanoan languages are spoken by about 30,000 people in parts of southern and central Colombia, northwestern Brazil, northeastern Ecuador and northeastern Peru.

Tucanoan languages
Cubeo, Guanano

More information about the Tucanoan languages

Tupi-Guarani languages

The Tupi-Guarani language family consists of 50 or so languages spoken by about 10 million people in parts of Brazil, Bolivia, French Guiana, Paraguay and Peru. It is a branch of the larger Tupian language family, which includes another 20 languages.

Tupi-Guarani languages
Guarani, Nheengatu

More information about the Tupi-Guarani languagesí-guaraní

Uralic languages

There are 38 Uralic languages spoken in Finland, Estonian, Hungary, Russia, Norway and Sweden by about 25 million people. This family is named after the Ural mountains, which is thought to be where they originated. This language family is also known as Finno-Ugric, which generally excludes the Samoyedic languages.

Finnic languages
Estonian, Finnish, Karelian, Kven, Livonian, Veps, Võro, Votic
Mari languages
Hill Mari & Meadow Mari
Mordvinic languages
Erzya, Moksha
Permic languages
Komi, Udmurt
Sámi languages
Inari Sámi, Kildin Sámi, Lule Sámi, Northern Sámi, Pite Sámi, Skolt Sámi, Southern Sámi, Ter Sámi, Ume Sámi
Samoyedic languages
Enets, Nenets, Nganasan
Ugric languages
Hungarian, Khanty, Mansi

More information about the Uralic languages

Uto-Aztecan languages

The Uto-Aztecan languages are spoken mainly in western parts of the USA and in Mexico, and also in El Salvador. There are 61 members of this language family spoken by about 1.9 million people.

Uto-Aztecan languages
Comanche, Hopi, O'odham, Nahuatl, Pipil, Shoshone, Tepehuán, Yaqui

More information about the Uto-Aztecan languages

Yeniseian languages

There is just one Yenisei language spoken by just about 200 people along the Yenisei river in central Siberia in the Russian Federation. The only other Yeniseian language to survive into the 20th century was Yug(h), which became extinct in 1990.

Yeniseian languages

More information about the Yenisei languages

Zaparoan languages

The five Zaparoan languages have fewer than 100 speakers and are spoken in parts of Peru and Ecuador.

Zaparoan languages
Arabela, Záparo

More information about the Zaparoan languages

Language isolates

Languages isolates are languages with no known connection to any other languages. Some languages are isolates because all their relatives are extinct, others, such as Basque, have been isolates for all their documented existence.

Language isolates
Ainu, Basque, Burushaski, Eskayan, Haida, Karuk, Mapuche, Nivkh, Purepecha, Seri, Sumerian, Tiwi, Urarina, Wardaman, Yuchi/Euchee

More information about the language isolates

Creole languages

Creole languages develop from contact languages or pidgins when they are learned by children as native languages. Pidgins emerge in situations where people who do not share a common language need to communicate.

Creole languages
Aukaans/Ndjuká, Bislama, Cape Verdean Creole, Chavacano, Chinook Jargon, Fanagalo, French Guianese Creole, Guadeloupean Creole, Haitian Creole, Jamaican, Manado Malay, Mauritian Creole, Nagamese, Papiamento, Pijin, Saramaccan, Seychelles Creole, Sranan, Tok Pisin, Torres-Strait Creole

More information about the Creole languages

International Auxiliary Languages (IALs)

International Auxiliary Languages are used as second languages for communication between people from different countries without a common languages. They are also known as IALs, auxlangs or interlanguages, and this name often refers to planned or constructed languages.

International Auxiliary Languages
Blissymbolics, Esperanto, Folkspraak, Ido, Interglossa, Interlingua, Interlingue/Occidental, Interslavic, Lingua Franca Nova, Lojban, Novial, Slovio, Volapük

More information about the international auxiliary languages


More information about language families