Papua New GuineaIn my last post I wrote about The Atlas of True Names, which renamed places according to their etymology.

Another map has been brought to my attention – one that reorganises the world according to the number of languages it has produced.
Limits of Language: Almost Everything You Didn’t Know You Didn’t Know About Language and Languages (whew!) by Mikael Parkvall is “part Guinness Book of World Records, part Book of Lists, and part illustrated encyclopedia”. And if that doesn’t make you want to take a look at it, this will: Papua New Guinea is the biggest place on the map.

Yep, tiny little Papua New Guinea (it’s off the northeast coast of Australia, if you’re trying to find it on a map), has produced more languages than any other country. Its total indigenous language count is 841, of which 830 are classified as ‘living’ and 11 have no known speakers.

Take a look at this PDF file for a sneak preview.