September 26, 2023

Linguistic Diversity in Turkey

turkish translation services

turkish translation services

Turkey is that this is the only country that lies on both continents, Asia and Europe. As per the country’s constitution, Turkish is their official language. Around 74 million people in Turkey speak this language. Moreover, 78 million people speak this language around the world. Muslims from around the globe have a great affiliation with Turkey because from this region Ottomans ruled the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and North Africa for more than 600 years. Therefore, you can find many cultural and historic regions in this country. If you want to visit Turkey and want to explore cultural and historic regions then Turkish translation services can be of great help. 

Linguistic Diversity in Turkey

You can observe linguistic diversity in Turkey. Their mother tongue is Turkish. However, people living in Turkey also speak languages like Kurdish, Zaza, Arabic, Gagauz, Ladino, and English Let’s have a look at these languages. 

Kurdish Language 

Do you know that Kurds are the largest minority group residing in Turkey? 15% to 20% of the Khurds are residing in the East and Southeast region of the country. These people speak the Kurdish language. It is an Iranian language and it is from the group of Indo-European languages. The other name of this language is Kurmanji. The best part of this language is that it is mutually intelligible with many European languages

Zaza Language

Zaza language is also known as Zazaki. It is the Northwestern Iranian language. People living on the Eastern side of Turkey speak this language. This language is from the group of Zaza-Gorian language which is the part of Northwestern group of the Iranian branch. The report by Ethnologue stated that approximately, three to four million people speak this language. 

Arabic Language 

People that have Arab ancestry and are living in Turkey speak the Arabic language. They make up 2 million of the Turkish population.  To your surprise only, 1.2% of native Turkish speak Arabic. The dialect that Turkish people speak is Mesopotamian Arabic. In ancient times, people used to speak  Arabic all over Mesopotamia but at present, people living in South-eastern Turkey widely speak the Turkish language. To differentiate Mesopotamian Arabic from standard Arabic, Arabic translation services can be of great help. 


One of the other Turkic languages is Gagauz. It is not only spoken in Turkey. In fact, people living in Ukraine, Russia, Moldova, etc., also speak this language.  It is spoken in two different dialects. One is  Maritime  Gagauzi and  other is Bulgar Gagauzia. 


The other names of this language are Sephardi, Judesmo, and Judeo-Spanish. Approximately, thirteen thousand people in Turkey speak the Ladino language. The Treaty of Lausanne which is signed in 1923 is responsible for this language preservation. This language originated in Spain from Castilian Spanish. This language has taken many loanwords from Aramaic, Hebrew, Greek, Turkish, and many more. 

How Many People Speak English In Turkey?

Although Turkey is surrounded by many English-speaking European countries. But, people there have quite low  English proficiency. In fact, just around 20% of the Turkish population knows how to speak basic English. The report by English Proficiency Index stated that Turkey ranks at number 64 from the list of 111 countries. It shows a very low rating. When these statistics are compared to the other 34 European countries then Turkey is positioned at 34 number out of 35. 

To increase English proficiency in the country, the Turkey government is taking great initiatives in the education system. In schools, they start teaching English from grade 2nd till high school. In university, people can decide whether to go for English literature or not. The Turkish government has hired highly qualified teachers in schools and universities to increase the English proficiency of their population.

Due to the strategic location of Turkey, many companies want to do business with Turkey. This has increased the demand for English speakers because English is a business language. No worries, Turkish people can take assistance from English translation services to mitigate the communication barrier.  With the efforts of the Turkish government, the English proficiency of the Turkish people will increase. 

Wrapping Up 

The above-mentioned Languages show how linguistically diverse is Turkey. Turkish is the official language. Kurdish is the second most spoken language by the largest minority group, the Kurds, while Zaza is spoken in the eastern side of Turkey. Arabic is spoken by people of Arab ancestry, and Gagauz is another Turkic language spoken in Turkey. Ladino is a language which is originated in Spain. It is also spoken by a small number of people.

English proficiency in Turkey is relatively low, but the government is implementing initiatives to improve it, starting with the education system. The demand for English translation services is increasing due to Turkey’s strategic location and business opportunities. If you want to visit Turkey then don’t forget to take the services of a professional translation company so that you can enjoy the history and architecture of Turkey without any communication barrier.