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Tongues of the World: Persian

Overview: The Persian language is occasionally mentioned in English as “Farsi,” but in fact this term only refers to the Iranian variant of a language that is quite widespread. Like English, Persian has no single standardized version, with the “standard” instead being determined by the country in which it is spoken. Farsi is generally spoken [...]

Tongues of the World: Mandarin Chinese

Overview: The term “Mandarin Chinese” actually refers to a vast language family made up of dozens, if not hundreds, of regional dialects in mainland China. If all these speakers are counted together, Mandarin is unequivocally the most widely-spoken language in the world, with close to a billion people speaking it natively. Differences in pronunciation and [...]