What languages are spoken in Wales
Official Language: Welsh
We say in Welsh, “cenedl heb iaith, cenedl heb galon”– “A nation without a language is a nation without a heart” in short language is a heart of any nation– and the language of Welsh is still very much at the heart of our national culture. its the very valuable asset of the Wales country Culture.
Welsh is the part of our common heritage and it belongs to all the people of Wales, whether they speak Welsh or not, again want to mention here its the common part of our Heritage, from the the names of the places all around us to the National Anthem. Welsh is spoken by over half a million people i Wales, and understood by many more residents of Wales. Mostly people can understand this language even if they can’t speak it.
About a few years ago, A television series was made by me to see what would happen if I travelled around the whole Wales country, speaking the language of Welsh only. And it was a linguistic experiment, but I was surprised and much pleasant to know that even in the areas that were predominantly English speaking and where mostly people speak English language, but those people knew more Welsh than they thought – and they were willing to use Welsh language with me, even if they had only a few words in their minds, and this Experiment result was totally surprised people who are living in English speaking areas even they love to speak Wales. That’s why it would not be wrong to say that Welsh is our heart and its our valuable asset.
As a whole in Wales Welsh is spoken by 19 per cent of the population they are very well trained speaking this language and their way of talking shows that its their native language, and in many areas on the streets you’ll hear it used alongside English, Welsh is also spoken in the shops, street corners, and on the buses. (In England there’s also a size-able Welsh diaspora– I myself was brought up in London in the Welsh speaking community, where my family members have lived since the 1880s.)
In all Spheres of Life Welsh is now used alongside the English Language, and legally it has equal status.
It was recently announced by the Welsh Government its plans to ensure that the language has a million speakers once again by 2050, That’s why Every child living in Wales now has the opportunity to learn Welsh language, and the demand for Welsh-medium education (schools) has grown consistently, particularly in South East and Cardiff.
As a result, the language of Welsh has become more ethnically diverse than ever before, with the speakers from African and Asian backgrounds as well as from other parts of Europe. But Welsh language has always been an inclusive language. It includes the loan-words from Latin, Norse, Irish, Norman French, and of course, from English.
Welsh roots, however, are Celtic. Cornish and Breton are its nearest relatives, that are its ‘sister languages’. Manx,Irish, and Scots Gaelic languages are its first cousins. Some 1500 years ago Welsh first emerged, and the earliest Welsh literature dates back to the 6th century – some Eight hundred years before the English of Chaucer!
For special mention our national anthem picks out ‘beirdd a chantorion’ – the poets and the singers. That custom continues to this day at the eisteddfod, an annual celebration of the Culture and its language.
Each year in August in a different locations The National Eisteddfod of Wales is held in the country and is the biggest arts festival of its kind. It includes learners’ competitions for those people who are still putting the hard efforts to master the language. The Festival of Urdd Eisteddfod, held each the month of June, is aimed at young community and each year attracts 40,000 competitors. at this eisteddfod Bryn Terfel,Matthew Rhys, Cerys Matthews, and Ioan Gruffydd are among those who have profited from their early experiences.
As the above mentioned names suggest, that using Welsh language is no bar to success beyond the borders. In the UK top 20 Mwng by the Super Furry Animals was the first Welsh-language album, and the films Solomon a Gaenor and Hedd Wyn both received Oscar nominations.
Programmes for Children such as Sam Tân (Fireman Sam) originated on the language of Welsh TV channel S4C, and these programmes have been sold in all countries of the world. recently, the detective drama Y Gwyll (Hinterland) has also done the same. But just as significantly, S4C TV channel and its radio counterpart BBC Radio Cymru now provide the Welsh-language window on Wales and the world for listeners and viewers at home, whether the home is in London or in Llandeilo.
The language of Welsh has always been ready to embrace new media. The first books in Welsh language were printed back in the 1540s and one hundred years ago there were twenty five weekly newspapers published in the language. Today that tradition is continued, not only by Golwg and Y Cymro in print, but also by the news websites such as Golwg 360 and BBC Cymru Fyw.
In all spheres of life Welsh is now used alongside English language, and it has equal status legally. Can we reach a million number of speakers by 2050? Why stop there? English and Welsh have coexisted in the country of Wales for centuries now – and perhaps our long experience of the bilingualism is something we can profitably share with the whole world as we reclaim our heritage.