El Principito, in standard Spanish.

Spanish, also known as Castilian, is a Romance language that originated in the Iberian Peninsula and is spoken by over 460 million people worldwide. It is the official language of 21 countries, making it the second most widely spoken language in the world after Mandarin Chinese.

Spanish evolved from Vulgar Latin, which was brought to the Iberian Peninsula by the Romans during their conquests. Over time, the language developed and absorbed influences from various sources, including Arabic (during the period of Moorish rule), as well as other Romance languages and local dialects.

El Principito, in standard Spanish.

While Spanish shares much of its vocabulary with other Romance languages like French, Italian, and Portuguese, it also includes loanwords from Arabic, Indigenous languages of the Americas, and various other sources.

Spanish has several regional varieties and dialects, each with its own unique features and characteristics. Some of the major dialects include European Spanish (or Castilian), Latin American Spanish, Mexican Spanish, Argentinian Spanish, Colombian Spanish, and many others. Due to its global importance and prevalence, Spanish is commonly taught as a second language in many countries. Numerous language schools and resources are available for those interested in learning Spanish.