Spanish language is also known as Español and Castilian. Castellano is a Western Romance language that originated in the Castile region of Spain and today has 480 million native speakers in Latin America and Spain and 570 million total speakers. It is usually considered the world's second-most spoken native language, after Mandarin Chinese.
Spanish is a part of the Ibero-Romance group of languages, which evolved from several dialects of Latin in Iberia after the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century. The oldest Latin texts with traces of Spanish come from mid-northern Iberia in the 9th century, and the first systematic written use of the language happened in Toledo in the 13th century. Beginning in the early 16th century, Spanish was taken to the viceroyalties of the Spanish Empire, most notably to the Americas, as well as territories in Africa, Oceania and the Philippines.Around 75% of modern Spanish vocabulary is derived from Latin. Ancient Greek has also contributed substantially to Spanish vocabulary, especially through Latin Spanish vocabulary has been in contact with Arabic from an early date, having developed during the Al-Andalus era in the Iberian Peninsula, with around 8% of its vocabulary being Arabic in origin.
Official Language in 21 Countries
Spanish is one of the six official languages of the United Nations. It is also used as an official language by the European Union, the Organization of American States, the Union of South American Nations, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, the African Union and by many other international organizations.
Spanish is the offcial languge in the following 21 Countries; Argentina, Bolivia , Chile, Columbia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Guatemala , Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Spain, Uruguay, Venezuela.
In New Zealand, there are 25,000 native Spanish speakers living here (2013 Census).