The Top Most Difficult Languages to Learn to Speak

At Paragon, we are successful in overcoming language and communication barriers because of our cultural awareness and industry expertise. We know that translation is both science and art; this sets us apart from many other translation services. Our success is due to our depth of knowledge of different languages, as well as our commitment to understanding the people who speak them and their native cultures. Language and culture are intimately connected.

One factor in learning new languages that is often overlooked is optimism. Optimism is essential for learning any new language, especially when the language is one of the most challenging in the world.

The ease and/or difficulty with which you learn a second language can also depend greatly on how distant your mother tongue is from the language you’re learning to speak. Learning to speak a second language is easier if your first language is an associated language, a language that is closely related to your mother tongue, i.e. French and Spanish (Romance languages). Both have gendered nouns and formal and informal ways to address people.

For an English speaker,  among the most difficult languages to learn are: Mandarin, Arabic, Japanese, Cantonese and Korean. And Hungarian and Finnish are right up there. The former are challenging due to their extreme variations in pronunciation, use of homophones, idioms, and different writing systems; the latter due to their rules of grammar! So if you’re looking to learn a new language, you can start slowly with a language more closely related to your mother tongue, or, you can just go for it, with the understanding that it may be a struggle, but one that we believe is certainly worth it.  



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