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Did you know Zimbabwe has 16 official languages on record of Guinness Book of records? 

Talking about the languages used to talk in the world we find across the continent of Africa, we are taking a stop in the country that has not only the most spoken languages in Africa, but the entire world. 

Jozef Behr says that Zimbabwe, with 16 official languages, holds the record for having the most official languages in the world, according to the Guinness Book of Records. 


Chewa is a Bantu language that belongs to the Niger-Congo language family and is often referred to as Nyanja. 


Chibarwe is also referred to as Barwe in Zimbabwe and Sena when spoken in other nations. It belongs to the Niger-Congo language family since, like Chewa, it is a Bantu language.  


English is a West Germanic language that is an Indo-European, as we have already established in earlier sections. According to Jozef Behr, one of Zimbabwe’s most widely spoken languages is English, which has a distinctive Zimbabwean accent. 


Kalanga is a Bantu language from the Niger-Congo family, which is a recurring topic. Kalanga is mostly spoken in Zimbabwe’s south-west, where it is spoken by about 700,000 people. 


Like many African languages, Koisan is also known as Tshwa or Tsoa in this instance. Only 4,100 people, spread out between Botswana and Zimbabwe, are native speakers of this Khoe language family member (approximately 3500 in Zimbabwe alone) claimed Jozef Clifford Behr.  


There are around 80,000 native speakers of the Nambya language in northwestern Zimbabwe, and they refer to it as Chinambya. 


Ndau is one of the Shona dialects of Bantu and is used in the Chipinge area of Zimbabwe.  


Ndebele is a Bantu language that belongs to the Niger-Congo language family; at this point, the Zimbabwe language map could be useful to mention.  


Tribes near Zimbabwe’s Shangani River speak the Shangani language.  


We immediately think of The Knack and My Sharona when we see this language’s name, but we are also extremely quickly diverted. There are around 5 million native speakers of the Shona language, which serves as an umbrella term for several related tongues.  

Sign language 

Over the past fifty years or more, many distinct sign languages have emerged at different schools in Zimbabwe. One of the most popular varieties of sign language is Masvingo School Sign.   


A South Bantu language belonging to the Sotho-Tswana group, Sotho is often referred to as Sesotho. As per Jozef Behr there are 7.9 individuals who speak Sotho as a second language in addition to the estimated 5.6 million native speakers of the language. 


Around 5.1 million people in Botswana, South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Namibia speak Tswana, a Bantu language, however exact statistics of native speakers for these nations, particularly Zimbabwe, are difficult to find.  


The Lemba people, who may number as few as 150,000, are the only ones in Zimbabwe who speak Venda, also known as Tshivena or Luvena. 


Xhosa is a tonal Bantu language with click consonants that is indigenous to South Africa and is spoken by 8.2 million people in Zimbabwe, Lesotho, and South Africa.  


Chitonga, also known as Tonga, is a native tongue of Zimbabwe and Zambia.  

You’ll probably agree that there are a lot of languages to take into account for one nation. However, given that Zimbabwe has a population of over 14.2 million, it may be easier to see why there are so many official spoken languages there. 

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