Major language families of the world Upsc

Identifying Language

language groups

Language is an identification for different cultures, as it is essential for communication. It influences the political, social, and economic.

As a result, the economic and religious system frequently follows patterns of language and distributions. And also political borders quite often parallel linguistic boundaries.

In the Modern Age, linguistic diffusion is influenced by trade, tourism, media, and international organization. This developed linguistic pluralism. Heterogeneous societies attribute the greatest linguistic diversity.

Language families

The classification by languages origins and historic development is known as a genetic classification. The languages which are the descendants of common ancestral language are called Proto-Language.

G.L. Trage classified the world into 7 linguistic phylum and 30 linguistic families. Language families are further classified into several subfamilies.

Major Language families and language groups


Indo-Iranian, Latin, Romantic, Germanic, Balto-Slavic, Celtic, Hellenic


Chinese, Tibetan, Burman


Semitic, Egyptian, Cushitic, Chadic


Niger-Congo (Atlantic, Voltaic, Benu-Nagar), Sudanic (Chari-Nile, Saharan), Click Languages (Khoisan)


Finno-Igric, Turkic, Mangolic, Tunguzic


Malayo, Polynesian, Malayan, Melanesian, Micronesian, Polynesian, Austro-Asiatic

Palaeo Asiatic


Major languages in India

It has its own language and dialects. As per the 1961 census of India, it is estimated to have 187 languages. About 97% of people of India speak 23 major languages excluding English.

India follows Kashmiri, Punjabi, Hindi, Urdu, Bengali, Assamese, Gujarati, Marathi, Kannada, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Sindhi, Sanskrit, Oriya, Nepali, Kongani, Manipuri, Bodo, Dogri, Maithili, and Santali.


Munda, Mon-Khmer


Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Gondi, Kurukh, Orean etc


Bodo, Karen, Manipuri


Hindi, Urdu, Sans

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* * All the Notes in this blog, are referred from Tamil Nadu State Board Books and Samacheer Kalvi Books. Kindly check with the original Tamil Nadu state board books and Ncert Books.
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