Are you interested in learning a new language? Or do you have a friend that desperately needs to get down the basics of yours?

Whether you are simply interested in knowing the basics, or you are on the road to fluency, this guide might be just the tool you were looking for.

Of course to really know a language you will need to know much more, but most of our core communication can be boiled down to a surprisingly short list of words.

To express yourself in a foreign language is never easy, but by learning the most basic verbs, descriptive adjectives and nouns you can cover most daily interactions and have a head start when trying to learn this language.

Available in Frisian and 10+ other languages

No more random words

Many language learning apps or courses often teach you “I wash the holy potato” or “Your sister owns seven elephants” before you can say “What’s up?”. While gamified language learning can be a lot of fun, it sometimes leaves you unprepared for actual communication with native speakers.

That’s why we have created this list of 400 words. You can use this as a starting point, and addition to your current language learning program, or a nice reminder of the basics.

Together we have created multiple guides to help you communicate yourself in any language.

The main focus of this guide is communication. Grammatical perfection is something that takes time, but communicating is the basis of any language.

The idea is that these words can serve as your basic skill set from where you can build understandable and descriptive sentences to allow you to communicate yourself.

What’s included?

The guide is built from basic verbs and sentences, as well as nouns and adjectives that can help you describe things or people.

That is why we have included lots of words like “big” or “small”, “dark” and “light”, but also words like “more” and “less”.From here you can describe things as “More big”, which may not be grammatically correct but it will in most cases be understood.

You can also combine words like “Yesterday” and “Tomorrow” with your basic verbs, so you can say things like “I go tomorrow”, which in some languages is grammatically correct, in others it is not, but it will always be understood.

Available in Portuguese and 10+ other languages

The beginning of your language journey

We are aware you can not become fluent with 400 words, but the idea is to give you a good base for you can communicate and understand the most basic things. From there on you can get the conversation going, ask questions and learn more.

You should look at these 400 words as the starting money you receive when playing Monopoly. It won’t win you the game, but it’s a way to get you into the game.

Learning many words or grammatical often doesn’t make sense until you actually need it, so when the time is right you can move on and research the things you think are missing in your communication.

Whether you just want to cover the basics or continue learning this language until fluency, these 400 words are a great start for you.

Completely free of charge

That’s right. All of the guides we put out are 100% free. We want to make language learning available to everybody.

We hope these 400 words can be published in many more languages and give people the opportunity to express themselves in as many languages as possible.

Available in Dutch and 10+ other languages

More languages available

The list has been published in over ten languages so far, including both national and regional languages. We are adding new languages constantly, so if you are looking for a specific language make sure to check out foreignlanguagecollective.com/400-words/ to see if your favorite language is already a part of our collection.

If it isn’t, you can always put in a request. Scroll down to the end of the page and will in the contact form, and we will add your suggestion to our to-do list.

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