In a post by Lingual Consultancy, they shared the top ten oldest languages that are still spoken today.
They state that there are over seven thousand languages spoken today, however around a third of them have less than a thousand speakers.
The first language on their list is Hebrew, which has over nine million speakers worldwide. It is the only Canaanite language still in use and is the official language of Israel.
Second is Basque, one of the oldest languages in Western Europe. Scientists haven't been able to determine it origin but over 750 thousand people speak it.
Third on their list is Tamil, which originated around 300 BCE. It is spoken by over eighty million people and is the official language of Sri Lanka and Singapore, as well as being recognized in Malaysia, Mauritius and South Africa.
One you may not be surprised about is Arabic, which is the fifth most spoken language in the world. It is spoken by over 270 million people and is the liturgical language of Islam. It originated from the Arabian Peninsula and has influenced many European languages, including languages such as Hindi, Bengali, Urdu and Spanish.
The fourth language they mention is Farsi, or Persian, which has around 110 million speakers. It is one of the oldest languages still being spoken in Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan. Modern Persian has remained largely unchanged and is still similar to Persian spoken around 800 CE.
The second European language on the list is Greek, which dates back to 1450-1350 BCE. It has approximately 13 million speakers and is native to Greece, Cyprus and other countries in the Eastern Mediterranean area. As part of its influence, its has been used to write other languages such as Hebrew, Arabic and Turkish, as well as lending its alphabet to scientific symbols.
The most spoken language in the world is Chinese, which has 1.2 billion speakers worldwide, surpassing English and Spanish. Around 16% of the worlds population speaks a dialect of Chinese as their first language. It origin is approximated at around 5000 BCE, with Yangshao holding the Guinness World Record of being the first written language.
The next language is Lithuanian, which around 3 million people speak. It's written language dates back to the 16th century and is considered the most conventional Baltic language. It has relations in Sanskrit, Latin and even Ancient Greek.
Heading down is Icelandic, which has the least amount of speakers on this list, only 358 thousand people. However, it dates back to around 1100 AD and remains largely unchanged since its roots by Norse settlers.
The last, but certainly not least, language on their list is Irish Gaelic coming in at 1.2 million speakers. It is an Indo-European language that originated around the 3rd or 4th century. It is the official language of the Republic of Ireland and recognized in Northern Ireland, however, according to UNESCO it is considered endangered.
According to an estimation by UNESCO, as of 2010 Luxembourgish only had around 390 thousand speakers, which does put it ahead of Iceland number-wise. Luxembourgish was only considered a national language of Luxembourg in 1984, vastly disqualifying it from Lingual Consultancy's list.