#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. The purpose of language holidays is to strengthen the traditions of multilingualism in the world. The United Nations has designated six days on the calendar, one for each of the organization’s official languages. The English language celebration date – April 23 – is the birthday of William Shakespeare – the great English poet, writer, the most famous playwright in the world.
Today, English is considered the world language – it is spoken by more than a billion people in several dozen countries.
What languages the population of the Yenisey Siberia regions speaks, we can find out from the census data. The demographic survey of 2010 showed that 4.2 percent of the population (118 thousand people) spoke English in the Krasnoyarsk region. Among women, the level of knowledge was higher – 4.6 percent, among men – 3.7 percent. In urban areas, 5.3 percent of the population spoke English, and 0.7 percent in rural areas.
In Hakassia, 2.4 percent of the population (almost 13 thousand people) knew Shakespeare’s language. In Tuva, 1.8 percent of the population (almost 5.5 thousand people) spoke English.
Over the past ten years, the need of Russians for knowledge of foreign languages has objectively grown. According to selective statistical observation, in 2020 in the Krasnoyarsk region, 41.1 thousand people were engaged in self-education and studied foreign languages. In Hakassia – 1.4 thousand, in Tuva – 5.6 thousand.
The new population census will show how the level of language proficiency has changed. It will take place in 2021. The residents will be asked not only about the knowledge of certain languages, but also about how actively they use them in everyday life.
But let’s turn back to Shakespeare, who changed the English language so much that it can be divided into ‘before’ and ‘after’ Shakespeare! The playwright introduced over 1000 absolutely new words that became part of the lexicon of the English language and have been used to this day: for example, ‘addiction’, ‘cold-blooded’, ‘to break the ice’ and many others.
Interesting facts about English:
– modern English is the result of a mixture of two languages: French and Old English;
– every two hours a new word appears in the English vocabulary;
– English is spoken by about 1.5 billion people, which is 20 percent of the world population;
– English has more words than almost any other language (about one million words);
– E is the most common letter of the English alphabet; ‘good’ is the most common adjective, ‘time’ is the most frequent noun;
– among living languages, the most closely related to English is Frisian, which is today spoken in three small regions of Germany and the Netherlands.
Text: Natalia Popova, Photo: open sources