What Language do they speak in Barcelona ?

What language do they speak in barcelona ? What language do they speak in Barcelona? Barcelona is renowned for its rich history, awe-inspiring architecture, and passionate culture. While modern-day Barcelona is a bustling metropolis attracting millions of tourists annually, its language reflects the intricate tapestry of its past.

Historical Context

To find out what language do they speak in Barcelona it’s only fair to give you some historical context. The linguistic landscape of Barcelona is deeply rooted in its history, with influences from various civilizations. The first known inhabitants were the Iberians, who likely spoke a language from the Iberian Peninsula. In 218 BC, the Romans captured the city and brought Latin, which became the dominant language over time. The fall of the Roman Empire led to the migration of Germanic tribes, such as the Visigoths, who left their mark on the language.

In the 8th century, the Moors, a Muslim group, conquered the Iberian Peninsula, including Barcelona, introducing Arabic to the linguistic mosaic. This era lasted until 801 AD when Charlemagne’s Frankish forces took control of the region during the Carolingian Empire. Consequently, the linguistic blend grew to include Frankish influences.

By the 9th century, the County of Barcelona emerged as an important political entity. As the region gained independence from Carolingian rule, a distinct Romance language, Old Catalan, started to evolve. This language served as the foundation for the modern-day Catalan language.

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what language do they speak in barcelona

Did you guessed what language do they speak in Barcelona?

Today, Catalan is the official language of Catalonia, with Barcelona as its capital. It is also spoken in Valencia, the Balearic Islands, Andorra, and parts of France and Italy. Catalan is a Romance language belonging to the same family as Spanish, French, and Italian.

Do they speak English in Barcelona?

What language do people speak in the Catalan capital?

Barcelona is a really multicultural city, so people speak hundreds of languages here. But let’s be practical – most people in Barcelona are Catalans, meaning that Catalan is their main language.

That being said, the majority of locals are bilingual and can speak Spanish fluently. In all the shops, restaurants, banks, museums, etc. those are the usual languages that people use on a daily basis. But don’t let that intimidate you.

If you are only coming for a visit and not to actually live in Barcelona, there is no need to learn the local languages. You will find that most touristic spots have hired employees who can also speak English and other foreign languages.

The English language and Barcelona

Barcelona is a very touristic city, opened to the world and bursting with culture. Over the recent years, the English language has bloomed, and more and more Catalans are speaking it.

If you are planning to become an English teacher here, you will find plenty of work opportunities.

But the Catalan and Spanish citizens are not the only ones to speak English. There are people living in Barcelona that have come from all over the world, who quickly find that the best way to communicate is in English.

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Tourists usually have a relatively easy time getting around the city and communicating with the locals in English, mainly in the touristic areas. But if you decide to come to Barcelona to live, it is essential that you learn a least basic communication in Spanish.

Venues and services in English in Barcelona

There are a variety of venues and services that cater to the English speakers in Barcelona. If you experience health issues, can find both doctors and dentists who speak English.

If you are looking to meet with people that speak English to make new friends, we strongly recommend you to check out Meetup.

This social networking platform allows you to get together with other users and many of them are English-speakers.

And you can also visit one of the many Irish pubs that you will find all other the cities if you want a taste of back home, or watch some sports that might not be on the Spanish television!

The point is, Barcelona is a welcoming city and you will easily find a way to settle here, whatever language you decide to speak, so English speakers in Barcelona will surely feel at home very quickly.

What language is spoken in Barcelona: Catalan and its history


Barcelona is located in Catalonia, an autonomous community in Spain. Catalonia is actually a specific region that refers to the northeast portion of Spain as well as parts of the bordering areas of France and Andorra.

This area was once its own “Principality of Catalonia” with its own distinct borders, peoples, customs, Royal Court and language.

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The development of the area with its own language and customs can be traced back to the seventh century with a definitive development of the Count of Barcelona by the ninth century.

During the Francoist Dictatorship years, Catalan culture, including institutions and language, was repressed and banned from official use.

Since the transition to democracy starting in 1975, Catalonia has recovered politically and culturally to become an autonomously governed region of Spain and now has three official spoken languages, including Catalan, Spanish, and an Occitan dialect called Aranese, and one sign language, Catalan sign language.

what language do they speak in barcelona

The Catalan language

Although many believe that Catalan as a language is a subset of Spanish, it is actually a Roman language derived from common Latin around the eastern Pyrenees in the ninth century.

In fact, the language shows more differentiation from Spanish and Portuguese, Ibero-Roman languages, than it does with Gallo-Roman languages of French, Italian, and Occitan.

In other words, Catalan is more closely related to the second group of languages than the first.

Although Catalan is spoken by most Catalonians, the majority within Barcelona speak Spanish or a plurality of both languages, whereas in the outlying areas of Catalonia more people speak Catalan.

Learning a few phrases in Catalan will ensure that you can get the basics no matter where you are. Catalan is also spoken in the Balearic Islands to the east of the mainland as well as Valencia.

Catalan phrases

Learning a few phrases of the local languages, especially if you will be living in the city for a while, will help you find the most important things when on vacation, such as washrooms, restaurants, shopping and alcoholic beverages.

There are many more phrases to learn when visiting this unique part of the world, since you may run into local Barcelonians that may speak Catalan and not Spanish.

Above is information what language do they speak in barcelona.  Hopefully, through the above content, you have a more detailed understanding of what language do they speak in barcelona .Thank you for reading our post.

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