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Languages of Saudi Arabia

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, al-Mamlaka al-`Arabiya as-Sa`udiya. 25,795,938. National or official language: Standard Arabic. Literacy rate: 38%, 50% men. Also includes Bengali (15,000), Egyptian Spoken Arabic (300,000), English (60,000), French (22,000), Indonesian (37,000), Italian (22,000), Kabardian (17,000), Korean (66,000), Somali (42,727), Sudanese Spoken Arabic (86,000), Tagalog (700,000), Urdu (382,000), Uyghur (5,919), Western Cham (100), Western Farsi (102,000), Chinese (58,000), from India (120,000), from the Philippines (700,000), others from Nigeria. Information mainly from M. Bateson 1967; T. M. Johnstone 1987; B. Comrie 1987; A. S. Kaye 1988; C. Holes 1990; B. Ingham 1994. Blind population: 140,000. Deaf population: 1,103,284. The number of languages listed for Saudi Arabia is 5. Of those, all are living languages.

Living languages

Arabic, Gulf Spoken

[afb] 200,000 in Saudi Arabia. Northern and southern Eastern Province. Alternate names: Gulf Spoken.  Dialects: Al-Hasaa.  Classification: Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, Central, South, Arabic 
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Arabic, Hijazi Spoken

[acw] 6,000,000 in Saudi Arabia (1996). Red Sea coast and adjacent highlands. Also spoken in Eritrea. Alternate names: Hijazi, West Arabian Colloquial Arabic.  Dialects: North Hijazi, South Hijazi, Valley Tihaamah, Coastal Tihaamah. North Hijazi has 4 subdialects, South Hijazi has 16.  Classification: Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, Central, South, Arabic 
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Arabic, Najdi Spoken

[ars] 8,000,000 in Saudi Arabia. Population total all countries: 9,863,520. Also spoken in Canada, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Syria, USA. Dialects: North Najdi (Shammari, Bani Khaalid, Dafiir), Central Najdi (Rwala, Haayil, Al-Qasiim, Sudair, Riyadh, Hofuf, Biishah, Najraan, Wild `Ali, `Awaazim, Rashaayda, Mutair, `Utaiba, `Ajmaan), South Anjdi (Aal Murrah, Najran). Some dialects are spoken by Bedouins.  Classification: Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, Central, South, Arabic 
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Arabic, Standard

[arb] 206,000,000 first-language speakers of all Arabic varieties (1999 WA). Middle East, North Africa, other Muslim countries. Also spoken in Algeria, Bahrain, Chad, Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Palestinian West Bank and Gaza, Qatar, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tanzania, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, Yemen. Alternate names: High Arabic, Al Fus-Ha, Al Arabiya.  Dialects: Modern Standard Arabic (Modern Literary Arabic), Classical Arabic (Koranic Arabic, Quranic Arabic). Preserves the ancient grammar.  Classification: Afro-Asiatic, Semitic, Central, South, Arabic 
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Saudi Arabian Sign Language

[sdl]   Classification: Deaf sign language 
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