English is a West Germanic language that was first spoken in England. Now with more than 400 million native speakers and 700 million that speak it as a second language, English is more widely spoken and written than any other language in the world. It is also the most widespread language in the world, spoken across all 6 continents and the official language of 55 different countries. It is the principal language of several nations, including the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, and a number of Caribbean nations. English the third most common native language in the world, after Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.