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The Languages of Ethiopia_Shanghai TranslationCompany

发表时间:2018-1-12  浏览次数:131  
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Where Is Ethiopia?

The Federal Republic of Ethiopia is a landlocked country located on the continent of Africa. It’s a country that’s completely surrounded by other countries – Djibouti and Eritrea to the north-east, Kenya to the south, Somalia to the east and The Sudan to the west. Ethiopia has the most inhabitants for a landlocked country, and it’s also the country where archaeological sites have revealed some of the oldest-known human remains. The capital of Ethiopia is Addis Ababa, located in the heart of the country.

Ethiopia was one of the first countries to adopt Christianity as the religion of State, and is the only African country to successfully resist European colonization.

The Population of Ethiopia

The population of Ethiopia was 32.2 million people in 1975; by July 2000 it had reached more than 64 million people. At that time, it was estimated that the population of Ethiopia would reach almost 91 million by the year 2015! According to an Internet search, the population of Ethiopia today stands at 101,161,899!

Ethiopia has a very diverse population; with the principal ethnic groups being –

Oromo (40 %),

Tigre and Amhara (32 %),

Sidamo (9 %),

Shankella (6 %),

Somali (6 %),

Afar (4 %), and

Gurage (2 %).

The remaining 1 percent belong to various other ethnic groups.

All in all, within Ethiopia there are more than 80 different ethnic groups. The predominant religion of Ethiopia is Islam, with up to 50% of the population identifying as Muslim. 35 to 40% are Ethiopian Orthodox, with 12% having other native African religious belief systems.

Ethiopian Languages

Ethiopia is extremely diverse, with more than 80 different ethnolinguistic groups. The sheer number of ethnolinguistic groups gives you some idea of just how many languages are spoken by the people of Ethiopia. The translators at Eging Translation have an enormous amount of experience with all the Ethiopian languages. Our Amharic translation services are superior because the majority of our translators are native speakers and they’re able to recognise the subtle differences and different dialects which occur between regions.

So let’s have a closer look at the four most common languages in Ethiopia –


Oromo is spoken in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia. It’s an Afro-Asiatic language, and part of the Cushitic branch of the language family. Oromo is actually a spectrum of dialects spoken across a specific region. Neighbouring dialects are similar, but dialects on one end of the spectrum are not mutually intelligible with dialects on the other end. Oromo has the largest number of speakers of all the Cushitic languages.


Amharic is the official language of Ethiopia; however only approximately 30% of the population speak Amharic (around 34% speak Oromo). Amharic is a Semitic language, coming in second to Arabic as the most spoken Semitic language. When written, it uses a syllable alphabet, and at this point in time there’s no official way of transliterating Amharic writing into Latin or Roman characters.

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