A language is a structured system of communication. The structure of a language is its grammar and the free components are its vocabulary. Languages are the primary means of communication of humans, and can be conveyed through speech, sign, or writing. Many languages, including the most widely-spoken ones, have writing systems that enable sounds or signs to be recorded for later reactivation. Human language is unique among the known systems of animal communication in that it is not dependent on a single mode of transmission, is highly variable between cultures and across time, and affords a much wider range of expression than other systems. Human languages have the properties of productivity and displacement, and rely on social convention and learning. Estimates of the number of human languages in the world vary between 5,000 and 7,000. Precise estimates depend on an arbitrary distinction being established between languages and dialects.

Read more in the app

Know Your Partner's Love Language? One Study Suggests It Could Make a Big Difference

Can we think without using language?

Did an AI Really Invent Its Own 'Secret Language'? Here's What We Know

Decoding the language of immune responses

Tired Adults May Learn Language like Children Do

Thousands of Chimp Vocal Recordings Reveal a Hidden Language We Never Knew About

The role of variability: From playing tennis to learning language

Reliability in Time: Evaluating the Web Sources of Information on COVID-19 in Wikipedia across Various Language Editions from the Beginning of the Pandemic

How Language-Generation AIs Could Transform Science

Trump supporters use less cognitively complex language and more simplistic modes of thinking than Biden supporters, study finds

Revealing the secret language of dark matter; Shedding light on the interplay of dark matter with standard matter, a new SISSA study suggests a possible solution to one of the greatest and long-standing mystery of astrophysics

Ursula Bellugi, Pioneer in the World of Sign Language, Dies at 91

Five Different Diseases Attack Language Areas in Brain

Fungi Use Electrical ‘Language’ to Communicate with Each Other: Study