List of endangered languages


List of endangered languages

A list of endangered languages (with fewer than 1000 speakers or in rapid decline).

In order to judge if a language is endangered, the number of speakers is less important than the age distribution; There are languages in Indonesia reported with as many as two million native speakers alive now, but all of advancing age, with little or no transmission to the young. On the other hand, while there are 30,000 Ladin speakers left, almost all children still learn it as their mother tongue, thus Ladin is not endangered in the 21st century. Similarly, the Hawaiian language has only about 1,000 speakers but it has stabilized at this number, and now has school instruction in the language, from Pūnana Leo immersion preschool classes through college.

While there are somewhere around six or seven thousand languages on Earth today, about half of them have fewer than about 3,000 speakers. Experts predict that even in an optimistic scenario, about half of today's languages will go extinct within the next fifty to one hundred years. Accordingly, the list below presents only a sample of the approximately 3,000 currently endangered languages.

;Africa
*;The Americas;;Central America
*;;North America
*;;South America
*;Asia
*;Australia and Pacific
*
*;Europe
*

References

ee also

*Endangered language
*List of extinct languages
*List of revived languages
*Language families and languages
*Language policy
*The Red Book of the Peoples of the Russian Empire

External links

* [http://www.ethnologue.com/nearly_extinct.asp List of more than 500 nearly extinct languages] in SIL's [http://www.ethnologue.com/ Ethnologue Report] (print version 2005: ISBN 1-55671-159-X).
* [http://www.tooyoo.l.u-tokyo.ac.jp/archive/RedBook/index.html UNESCO Red Book of Endangered Languages]
* [http://www.nationalgeographic.com/mission/enduringvoices/ National Geographic - Enduring Voices]


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