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世界上大部分的语言都将消亡

Ever hear someone speak Udihe, Eyak or Arikapu?

Odds are you never will. Among the world”s 6,800 languages, half to 90 percent could be extinct by the end of the century.

Half of all languages are spoken by fewer than 2,500 people each, according to the Worldwatch Institute, a private organization that monitors global trends.

Languages need at least 100,000 speakers to pass from generation to generation, says UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.

War, genocide, fatal natural disasters, government bans and the adoption of more dominant languages, such as Chinese and Russian, also contribute to their demise. (BY DARLENE SUPERVILLE The Associated Press )

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