South Africa has the most official languages that have equal status, with eleven. Bolivia recognises thirty-seven languages, the most of any country in the world, and India recognises twenty-three. However, Bolivia and India give primacy to Spanish and Hindi respectively, making South Africa the country with the most equally important official languages.
The Hoovers both spoke Mandarin. In the White House they would speak in Mandarin to avoid eavesdroppers. To date, Lou Hoover is the only First Lady to speak an Asian language. They were also well versed in Latin; working together to translate “De Re Metallica” a 16th century mining textbook.
Due to its isolated location, the Icelandic language has changed very little from its original roots. Modern Icelandics can still read texts written in the 10th Century with relative ease.
The Rosetta Stone, the key to deciphering Ancient Egyptian, was found in 1799 during the French military expedition to Egypt, by a French Army engineer captain named Pierre-Francois Bouchard. Bouchard had been part of a unit tasked with restoring an old fort, where he spotted the slab.
Speakers of the indigenous Australian language Dyirbal switch to a completely different dialect in the presence of their mother-in-law.
The Icelandic language was kept isolated for so long that modern speakers can still read and understand texts written in Old Norse, the language of the original viking settlers from Scandinavia that settled the Island over 1000 years ago.
“This map shows the most commonly spoken language in every US state, excluding English and Spanish”, by Andy Kiersz and Ivan De Luce, Business Insider (1/18/20)
There is a Canadian TV anchor who translates all the English news into Inuktitut live on air. Igalaaq is the only Inuktitut supper hour TV program in the whole country where unilingual Inuktitut speakers have this one chance, for 30 minutes, to see someone speaking their language.
A man from New Zealand memorized every french word in the french scrabble dictionary and won the French Scrabble Championship. He still doesn’t speak any french.
Navajo was once in danger of losing a lot of speakers, but the Navajo nation set up programs to teach the language as well as many bilingual schools. Now there are even institutes, community colleges, and technical universities with classes in the Navajo language.