http://bathknightblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/telegraph-logo.jpgBy Anne Merritt. The English language is closely related to many Germanic and Romance dialects, so when it comes to language study English speakers aren’t starting from scratch. Anne Merritt lists the 10 easiest to pick up.
We English speakers have a bad reputation in the world of language. According to a European Commission survey in 2012, 61 per cent of British respondents could not speak a second language. However, with growing foreign economies and more global communication than ever before, languages are becoming a crucial skill for professionals.
Ten easiest languages for native English speakers to learn.
The English language is closely related to many Germanic and Romance dialects, so when it comes to language study English speakers aren’t starting from scratch. Anne Merritt lists the 10 easiest to pick up.
Afrikaans
Like English, Afrikaans is in the West Germanic language family. Unlike English, its structure won’t make your head spin. A great feature of Afrikaans, especially for grammar-phobes, is its logical and non-inflective structure. Unlike English, there is no verb conjugation (swim, swam, swum). Unlike Romance languages, there is no gender (un homme, une femme in French)...
French

We can thank William the Conqueror for excellent, colour, identity, and about 8000 other French-derived English words left over from the Norman occupation. Linguists estimate that French has influenced up to a third of the modern English language, from the language of the courts in the 11th century to modern terms like je ne sais quoi, après-ski, and bourgeois...
Spanish
For language learners, a great feature of Spanish is its shallow orthographic depth – that is, in most cases, words are written as pronounced. This means that reading and writing in Spanish is a straightforward task...
Dutch
Another West Germanic cousin of the English language, Dutch is both structurally and syntactically familiar for English speakers. In terms of pronunciation and vocabulary, it parallels English in many ways, such as groen (green) or de oude man (the old man)...
Norwegian
This North Germanic language has consistent pronunciation and, for English speakers, some pretty breezy grammar. Norwegian and English have very similar syntax and word order. Verbs are an especially simple feature, with no conjugation according to number or person. The rules of conjugation are particularly straightforward, with a simple –e suffix for past tense, and –s for passive verbs...
Portuguese
Portuguese is grammatically similar to other Romance languages. One attractively simple feature is its interrogative form, which is expressed by intonation alone, not through rearranging phrases. We’re leaving now can become a question just by raising one’s voice at the end (“We’re leaving now?”) which is a natural linguistic habit of English speakers anyway. In Brazilian Portuguese, questions can also be posed through one catchall question tag: não é?
Swedish
Another Germanic language, Swedish shares many cognate words with English, such as konferens (conference), midnatt (midnight), and telefon (telephone). The syntax is also familiar to English speakers, with a Subject-Verb-Object structure, and verb conjugations which follow the same patterns and rules as in English grammar...
Italian
The most romantic of Romance language, Italian has a Latin-rooted vocabulary which allows for many Italian/English cognates, including foresta (forest), calendario (calendar), and ambizioso (ambitious)...
Esperanto
Esperanto advocate Leo Tolstoy claimed to have learned it in four hours. Most linguists class it among the easiest languages to learn, especially for Indo-European language speakers...
Frisian
This language is native to Friesland in the Netherlands, and is spoken by fewer than half a million people. Still, it is English’s closest sibling, uniquely connected in the tiny linguistic category of North Sea Germanic languages. The two parted ways, so to speak, when Old English and Old Frisian started evolving independently around the 8th century... Read more...