Skip to content

What Is The Oldest Language In The World? Find Out Here!

What Is The World’s Oldest Language?

What would happen if you asked a random person who speaks English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, Polish, Russian, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Hindi, Swahili, Urdu, etc. about their native tongue?

The answer is probably “I don’t know, I’ve never learned.”

There are around 6,000 mysterious language spoken worldwide, and only a handful of them are considered being old.

There are many theories what is the oldest native language in the world, and most of them have little in common.

In fact, the oldest official language in the entire world is not even an actual living language anymore. It’s Sanskrit, which dates back to 2000 BC.

Sanskrit was once used as a sacred liturgical language throughout India, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh. Today, however, it has been replaced with other primary language, such as Hindi.

Today we will learn more about the ancient languages that gave us so much knowledge, including how they spoke before they started speaking any modern or contemporary forms of speech.

So, let’s start!

The Origin of Language

Language has been around for millions of years. It started out as simple sounds and later developed into words.

Even though there were other modern languages before English, we cannot say that they were used in their full form because we don’t have records of these languages.

We can only imagine what these people said to each other using these primitive sounds. We can also assume that the first people who spoke to each other had different dialects and accents.

There are many theories regarding the origin of language. Some believe that language came from the animal world, while others believe that it was invented by man.

One theory suggests that when animals began communicating through sound, the human brain adapted itself and became able to understand those sounds. This led humans to create verbal communication.

Another hypothesis states that spoken language originated when two tribes met up. They ended up having conversations with one another, leading to the invention of new words and phrases.

These tribes then spread this word.

These are just some examples; but no matter where your idea comes from, you need to agree that something very complex happened thousands of years ago.

Oldest language in History

There are thousands of languages in the world today, but unfortunately, many of them are not alive.

Every year there’s a new language added to the list of national language that have been spoken for at least 2,000 years.

The history of the world spans thousands of years. During this period, many sacred language have been spoken, and many of these have been lost to history

Here’s a list of the oldest languages in history.

1) Sanskrit language

Sanskrit is one of the largest living languages. Its native speakers live in India, Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Mauritius, Fiji and Trinidad and Tobago.

According to UNESCO, over 5 million handful of people speak Hindi and it is estimated that 75 per cent of Indians can communicate in this language.

It has been studied for centuries due to its importance as a significant language in Hinduism.

Today, more than 1000 years after the language was first recorded around 800 CE, Sanskrit continues to attract interest among academics, writers, poets, translators, philosophers, and artists.

Most modern works published online seek to satisfy readers’ demand for knowledge of the rich literary tradition in the Sanskrit language.

2) Ancient Egyptian language

Egyptian was one of the first known human-invented piece of writing systems, developed by the Egyptians during the 26th century BCE. Its use spread from Egypt into Mesopotamia, Syria, parts of Africa and beyond.

Some scholars claim that its influence extended further than traditional accounts suggest, for example into areas now under water like Crete and Malta, but this remains disputed.

Egyptian hieroglyphics are the oldest form of written languages. Its hieroglyphs are known as Egyptian hieroglyphs.

The ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs are an integral system of true writing systems that was developed around 3200 BC. Hieroglyphics are the oldest structural writing system that was developed in the world.

3) Sumerian language

 Sumero-Akkadian was the lingua franca of the area around present-day Baghdad until c. 1000 CE when Persian began replacing it.

It became extinct after being supplanted by Middle Assyrian circa 300 CE. Like all Semitic dominant language, it had no inflexional morphology.

4) Phoenician language

Phoenicia was located on today’s coastlines of Lebanon and Israel. It was named after the city of Fūnus Philēsia.

Phoenicians invented two major innovations: alphabetic earliest writings and navigation techniques using celestial bodies such as stars.

They also established colonies across Europe, North Africa, Western Asia, East Africa, Madagascar, South America and West Antarctica. This made them among the early pioneers of globalisation.

5) Greek language

Greek was the earliest Indo-European language. It arose somewhere within the Balkan Peninsulas region.

While there are various competing claims based on different etymologies, Proto-Indo-European, meaning ‘to light’, appears to remain uncontested.

A large body of evidence exists showing that Classical Antiquity saw considerable contact between Greeks and non-Greeks.

Both Greek and Roman culture drew upon earlier cultures, incorporating ideas, styles, mythological motifs and practices originating outside Greece proper.

6) Latin language

One of oldest first ever language in the world is Latin, and its origins can be traced back to the Roman Empire.

It was the language of the middle class in the Roman Empire, and was used by the upper class in the subsequent centuries.

The language was not much in use in the medieval period, when it was spoken by monks, monks, and priests. However, when the two empires clashed in the later centuries, Latin was used in both empires.

Spanish territories include islands off their Atlantic and Pacific coasts, Central America, southernmost USA and northern Brazil.

7) Hebrew language

Hebrew is sometimes considered being the parent tongue from which the Jewish dialects Arabic, Aramaic, Turkish, Chaldean Neo-Aramaic, Syriac, etc., developed.

However, since these languages diverged from Biblical Hebrew recently, some linguists regard them as separate languages rather than dialects of Hebrew.

8) Egyptian Hieroglyphics language

The oldest written system designed to represent spoken sounds. Developed at least 3,000 years ago, hieroglyphics use a simplified set of pictures or signs to record information.

Ancient Egyptian was adopted soon afterwards towards Sudanese regions. At about the same period as ancient Egyptian, another script called Cretaceous emerged, however very little is known.

About 2700 BC, the Dynastic Period begun with the First Dynasty and continued well through to the end of the last dynastic age, the Ptolemaic Kingdom.

9) Armenian language

Armenian is an indo-european language, member of the Italic branch of the Romance family tree. Its closest relatives are Albanian, Istro-Romanians, Italian, Maltese and Rhaetian.

Although Armenians share many common features with other Indo-European languages, they have developed unique phonology, grammar, vocabulary, religious beliefs, traditions, folklore, art forms, and architecture.

10) Proto-Indo-European

Proto-Indo-European is the oldest known language in history. It existed around 5,000 years ago and was spoken by people living in what is now Germany and France.

While Proto-Indo-Europeans were speaking this extinct language, other Indo-European languages were being created.

These new daily language became popular and spread across Europe and Asia.

Today, only a few thousand people speak this common language. However, thanks to the Internet, we can learn about its history and culture. 

First language to use letters and word

While there are diverse views regarding the origin of writing systems, it seems most likely that pictographic writing originated several times during prehistory, perhaps as early as the Upper Paleolithic.

In particular, the earliest example found so far dates back 40 000 years; it has been discovered near the Afar region of Ethiopia.

It remains unclear whether such first examples are related to each other or not. Some scholars believe that they might all derive from one protruding system, while others think that none of the existing ones could be derived from any other.

Some scholars believe that they might all derive from one protruding system, while others think that none of the existing ones could be derived from any other.

It may also be speculated that the invention of alphabetic characters occurred more than once; for instance, both Chinese and English use logographs, but neither “alphabet” nor “logograph” means the same thing: a logography represents concepts whereas an alphabet refers to syllables.

Thus, it would seem unlikely that writing itself is older than 4500–5000 B.C.; it’s possible that the development of a true alphabet preceded the emergence of fledged literacy.

Writing materials used before the discovery of papyrus included reeds, sticks, bones, shells, wood, stone, ivory, clay, wax, copper, bronze and gold.

+ posts

A Wife, a mum and a Tutor! I am the Lead Editor at TheTutor.Link & also the Head Tutor there. I love teaching seeing young minds flourish. I also love blogging and sharing my experience on the world wide web.