A Brief History
Spanish, a Romance language, originated from Latin spoken on the Iberian Peninsula. With influences from the Visigoth and Arabic languages, modern Spanish began to take shape in the 1400s AD. The language spread globally during the Age of Exploration, mixing with indigenous languages in the Americas and other regions. The Royal Spanish Academy sought to standardize the language, leading to the modern, widely spoken language we know today with diverse regional accepted variations. Now, Spanish is the second most spoken language in the world, with rich cultural and historical significance.
Interesting Facts About the Language
- Spanish has formal and informal grammar structures. “tú” is used for addressing friends and family, while “usted” is used formally, such as when addressing strangers, elders, or in professional settings.
- Spanish is the official or national language in 21 countries, including Spain, Mexico, most countries in Central and South America, and some Caribbean nations such as Puerto Rico.
- Spanish is a phonetic language, which means its sounds are overwhelmingly spoken as
they are spelled.
- Spanish words with Arabic roots often relate to science, mathematics, astronomy, architecture, art, and cuisine, reflecting the significant influence of Arabic culture on the Iberian Peninsula.
- Spanish differs from other Romance languages (like Italian and French) because it is a rhotic language, meaning that the r sound is pronounced at the start and end of words.
- Spanish is the second most spoken language in the world by native speakers, with over 460
million people who speak it as their first language.