French is one of the fastest growing languages in the world, and it has become quite essential for the global economy. In fact, it is not only one of the richest languages when it comes to its cultural presence, but it has laid its roots in a number of industries across the globe, making it a universal language.
Want to discover why? Keep reading and enjoy some of the most interesting facts about the French language!
1. Did you know French is the official language of Senegal? And what about Madagascar or Canada? French is actually the official language of 29 countries, which puts it in second place behind English.
2. French is also the procedural language for the EU, the only language used for deliberations at the Court of Justice for the EU, and one of the recognized working languages of the United Nations.
3. There are a total of around 355 million French speakers worldwide.
4. The French speaking market is eminent and drives up the demand for French speakers in the job market. Consequently, the French language is in high demand for professional translators.
5. About 30% of modern English words are of French origin. English continues to borrow words from French and adapt them into its everyday lexicon, for example, words like déjà vu or brunette.
6. French is a language of literature. You’re probably familiar with Les Misérables, but did you know that some of the most famous children’s fairy tales like La Belle et la Bête (Beauty and the Beast) or Le Petit Chaperon Rouge (Little Red Riding Hood) were originally written in French?
7. The French language’s popularity continues to increase as French-speaking countries in Africa continue to grow and develop. Current projections show that the population of French speakers around the world could increase to over 750 million by 2050.
8. French cuisine is undoubtedly famous and popular and french words have defined the way food is prepared. Words like Chef, blanching or sautéing are some of the cooking terms that originated from French.
9. France is the most visited country in the world with 75 million tourists every year.
10. French is also the only language, with English, that is taught in every country of the world, with 100 million students and 2 million teachers, 20 % of whom are outside of francophone countries.