Open main menu


A mural in Teotihuacan, Mexico (c. 2nd century) depicting a person emitting a speech scroll from his mouth, symbolizing speech

Language is a system that consists of the development, acquisition, maintenance and use of complex systems of communication, particularly the human ability to do so; and a language is any specific example of such a system.

The scientific study of language is called linguistics. Questions concerning the philosophy of language, such as whether words can represent experience, have been debated at least since Gorgias and Plato in ancient Greece. Thinkers such as Rousseau have argued that language originated from emotions while others like Kant have held that it originated from rational and logical thought. 20th-century philosophers such as Wittgenstein argued that philosophy is really the study of language. Major figures in linguistics include Ferdinand de Saussure and Noam Chomsky.

Selected general articles

Did you know...

Need help?

Do you have a question about Language that you can't find the answer to?

Consider asking it at the Wikipedia reference desk.

Get involved

For editor resources and to collaborate with other editors on improving Wikipedia's Language-related articles, see WikiProject Language.

Selected images

In the news

17 April 2019 – 2019 Guatemalan general election
Presidential candidate Mario Estrada [es] is captured in the United States because of his alleged connections with the international drug trafficking Sinaloa Cartel. The United States Department of Justice says in a statement that Estrada had requested the murder of political rivals to win the presidency in exchange for granting control of airports and ports in the country to these groups. The presidential and parliamentary elections are scheduled for June 16. (Prensa Libre)
26 March 2019 – Green New Deal
The United States Senate blocks the Green New Deal, a progressive climate change resolution aiming to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. It has faced criticism from conservatives, as well as some Democrats, who have found the language in the resolution too broad and unspecific. (The Hill)


Associated Wikimedia

The following Wikimedia Foundation sister projects provide more on this subject:






Learning resources



Purge server cache