Amharic Language

Amharic Language

Amharic is the official language of Ethiopia and the second most widely spoken Semitic language in the world after Arabic. It originates from the Amhara region in the north of Ethiopia which has a population of over 30 million people. In addition to being the official language of Ethiopia, Amharic is also the official language of several regional states of Ethiopia.

The Amharic language spread its influence when the Ethiopian Empire shifted its base from Axum to Amhara around 11th Century A.D. It has been the official tongue of Ethiopia since the 14th Century AD.


Most Amharic speakers also speak English, Afaan Oromo, Tigrinya and Arabic. Amharic is the third most spoken African language in the United States after Swahili and Yoruba. There are also a large number of Amharic speakers in Israel, Italy and several other European countries.

There are several closely related dialects of Amharic spoken in Ethiopia. The dialects in the central part and main cities of Ethiopia are influenced by Afan Oromo, Agawe and Arabic languages. Recently, English has been increasingly influencing the Amharic language.

Amharic is written left to right and is supported by UTF-8 encoding making it readable by internet browsers and computer programs. It is also supported by Google translate and Gboard.