What Is a Polyglot? 5 Tips on How to Become a Polyglot

By | January 18, 2017

Have you heard me or someone using this strange term “polyglot”? Maybe you are asking, “What is a Polyglot?” or “How could I become one?” Today I am going to explain what that word means and you could become a polyglot.

Definition of a Polyglot

According to Dictionary.com polyglot is simply “a person who speaks, writes, or reads a number of languages.” It can also mean a few other things in other contexts, but this is the most common way of using it.

I am, for example, a polyglot because I speak, write and read many different languages. Benny Lewis is a polyglot because he speaks even 13 different languages. Are you a polyglot?

There is no accurate statistics how many people in the world are polyglots, but it’s often said that more than half of the world speaks 2+ languages. Some estimate that even more than 65% of world’s population can speak more than one language.

The United States is one of the largest monolingual areas on Earth. In many countries in Asia and some parts of Africa, most people can speak 3 or 4 languages already since their childhood. So, being a polyglot is not uncommon. It’s very natural for human beings to learn many languages.

Anybody can become a polyglot.

What is a polyglot

6 Famous Polyglots

What Is a Hyperpolyglot?

There are a few different definitions for a hyperpolyglot, but one standard definition is the following:

Hyperpolyglot is a person that speaks more than 12 languages.

You may think that how is it possible for someone to speak more than 12 languages. That’s what I taught about two years ago when I first time heard about Benny Lewis who was speaking 13 languages. Being a hyperpolyglot is not very common, but there are more than you may think.

Those people are not super humans or something like that. They have just made a decision to learn a language and then they are using the most effective techniques for learning a new language.

How to Become a Polyglot? – 5 Powerful Tips

I know many people who would like to acquire new languages, but they don’t know how. That’s why I created LanguagesAreEasy.com. Our mission is to help people to learn languages faster and while having fun. Here are 5 tips how you can become a polyglot. Or if you are polyglot, then these tips will help you to learn even more languages.

1.Define your “Why?”

In my opinion, a language learning process is 80% psychology and only 20% about right techniques. If you want to become a polyglot, you will learn for sure. If you want to learn any language, you will. Getting the right mindset makes your language learning process much easier and more enjoyable.

Why do you want to become a polyglot? Why do you want to learn a new language? What are your reasons to learn foreign languages?

If you just “somehow kinda want to learn a language,” then you probably will not learn it. You need to want really want it. Do you need it for a new job? Do you need it so you can communicate better with your wife or with her parents? What is your why?

I could also ask what are your Whys because many times there is more than one reason to learn a new language. It’s always better if you write down those goals to the paper. Then they sink deeper into your mind, and you can also see that paper if you feel discouraged during the learning process. Define you why and you are already halfway becoming a polyglot.

2.Make little progress every day.

How to eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

Do you know people who start something new and they do it like crazy, but after 3 days, they quit? Learning a new language requires consistency and persistence. A Little progress every day adds up to significant results.

Even 30 or 15 minutes a day can make enormous progress if you keep on practicing every day. Use Duolingo, Memrise or other language learning tool to keep you motivated every day.

3.Be willing to make mistakes.

If you want to learn a new language, you need to be ready to go out of your comfort zone. Sometimes you will make mistakes, but that’s what happens to all.

Are you afraid that people will laugh at you? Don’t be scared of that. Is it so bad if you make someone smile or laugh? When I was in Indonesia for two months in 2016, I tried to pronounce Indonesian words. I know that the Indonesian language it’s not very complicated, and the grammar is quite easy.

But naturally, I made mistakes because I had never spoken a word of Indonesian before. People laughed at my pronunciation. But then I thought again, “I think it’s a good thing if people are happy and they are laughing.” 😉

4.Find a Language Partner

Would it be cool to practice the language “in real life”? Would it be great to learn the right pronunciation? Find a native speaker and practice with him/her. Nowadays you can find native speakers for any language in 5 minutes in Italki.

Having a language partner will help you hugely in the process of becoming a polyglot. Have you ever tried practicing a language with someone regularly?

5.Enjoy the results

When you are putting in the efforts with a new language, little by little you start to see results. I remember at the end of 2014 when I lived in Fuengirola, Spain; I wasn’t able to speak very much Spanish. Of course, I spoke some Spanish, but I wasn’t able to understand very well what other people were talking around. I visited a Bible study circle (I am a committed Christian), and people were speaking naturally in Spanish. I understood something, but I wasn’t able to follow the teaching or what people were talking about.

Time went on, and I kept on practicing Spanish. I also found a language partner on Italki. Then next summer (2015) I visited Paris, and I was in a Spanish-speaking Bible study again. And guess what? I understood almost everything! I was able to communicate in Spanish easily, and I knew what people were saying.

It was so great feeling because I remembered that time when I was in Fuengirola. I had made enormous progress. That was motivating!

So when you start working on becoming a polyglot, you will see results. It is so as sure as the sun rises from the east and sets in the west.

Want to Become a Polyglot Faster?

You will speed up the process of becoming a polyglot by applying the principles that hyperpolyglots give you. Those people who speak 12, 20, 30, 40 or even 50 languages. They really know how to learn new languages.

In Benny Lewis’ Fluent in Three Months -course you will learn from the best language learners in the world. You will see and hear their best tips on becoming a polyglot. Who knows if you will become a hyperpolyglot one day?

=> Have a look at Benny’s course if you want to speed up the process!


Do you know many polyglots? What are your favorite ways to becoming a polyglot?

Let me know in the comments below! 🙂

8 thoughts on “What Is a Polyglot? 5 Tips on How to Become a Polyglot

  1. Lisa

    I have been considering learning another language and this website has definitely provided some encouragement. I didn’t even know there were terms used to define a person that can speak multiple languages. Having more than one language apart of ones vocabulary also gives them an edge in the job market. Thanks.

    1. Roope Kiuttu Post author

      Hi Lisa,

      I didn’t know that there is a term polyglot before 2014. Actually, that was a year when I started learning languages much faster than ever before in my life. You are right that language skills give an edge in the job market. I am currently working in Austria and I wouldn’t be working here if I wouldn’t be able to speak more than my native language. 🙂

  2. Britni

    Thanks for adding the definitions to knowing more then one language. Honestly I have never heard a few of these definitions . Guess we never stop learning. My daughter is only four but she has a big interest in learning Spanish. What would you recommend for me to do or purchase for her to learn. I have no idea where to even start . I was considering a DVD’s and stuff like that. Because I don’t believe I can teach her.

    1. Roope Kiuttu Post author

      Hi Britni,

      I was actually working in a Spanish-speaking kindergarten. There are lots of helpful videos for children in Youtube in Spanish. Search, for example, “Espanol para ninos” or “Spanish for children” or something similar.

      Yesterday I also revealed one great resource for learning Spanish but, in my opinion, it’s probably better for adults than for children. Have a look here! Who knows if you will like it a lot? 🙂


  3. Ariel Baradarian

    I definitely agree that it’s not as hard to learn another language as people think. I lived in Israel for about a year and a half while studying in a yeshiva in Jerusalem, and I was able to learn Hebrew in about 3 months. Although I grew up knowing how to read the language, I didn’t understand the words until I was in Israel. I managed to learn it thru speaking and listening to others speak as well as learning it in a class. I would be interested in learning Farsi using this program so I can speak with my older Persian relatives that can’t speak English well.

    1. Roope Kiuttu Post author

      Hi Ariel,

      very interesting to hear about your experiences with Hebrew language. Many other people have said the same that they learned much faster through speaking and listening. That’s one reason, I like Benny’s method’s to learn new languages.

      I believe that you can definitely learn Farsi if you just practice enough. Have a good habit of practicing Farsi daily and you will make a huge progess over the time course.


  4. Jonata

    Having fun with learning really is very important, nowadays people learn a language just for professional life, and they lose the beauty of learning.

    1. Roope Kiuttu Post author

      Hi Jonata,

      you are right that many times people study languages to have a job in a foreign country.

      I think that despite of the reason that you are learning a language, it helps if you have fun while learning. I guess you agree with me?

      When learning is fun, one learns faster and maintains the motivation for studying the language.



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