I would like to convey a rather complex idea in Russian.

Switzerland is a multilingual country where, among other languages, French and German are spoken.

However, there are more german-speaking Swiss who know French than french-speaking Swiss who know German, and I would like to tell exactly this in Russian.

I know the words англоговорящий and русскоговорящий. But I doubt just every language can be attached to this suffix (plus англо- and русско- are themselves adaptations into a prefix, and I don't know if every language has a prefix of its own).

  1. First, the sentence I am looking for. Does it work like this?

Есть больше немецкоговорящих швейцарцев, знающих французский, чем французскоговорящих швейцарцев, знающих немецкий.

Again, I'm not sure about the language prefixes. Maybe I could use "немецкие швейцарцы" and "французские швейцарцы" instead?

  1. Which are the language prefixes for the following languages? итальянский, португальский, испанский, японский.
  • 2
    @Alex_ander got it completely right - англоворящий is somebody who knows English to some decent extent, англоязычный is native English speaker.
    – shabunc
    Commented Jul 14, 2018 at 14:03
  • i agree with Alex_ander's phrasing (regardless of the words choice) Немецкоговорящих швейцарцев, знающих французский, больше, чем франкоговорящих швейцарцев, знающих немецкий, as usage of есть in place of English there's/re isn't typical to Russian Commented Jul 14, 2018 at 15:27
  • A note: -говорящий is not a siffix, but a part of a compound word. Commented Jul 15, 2018 at 20:46

2 Answers 2

  1. Немецкоязычных швейцарцев, знающих французский, больше, чем франкоязычных (швейцарцев), знающих немецкий.
  1. It's possible to find in a modern 'synonyms' dictionary (e.g. Тришин, 2013) versions like: немецкоговорящий (германоговорящий), франкоговорящий (also, noun: франкофон), италоговорящий, португалоговорящий, испаноговорящий, японоговорящий. All of those (presumably, coming from the form like 'English speaker') have older, more traditional versions, ending with -язычный. The version like англоговорящий is not always applied to a native speaker, it sometimes describes a technician with language training (англоговорящий технический специалист) for working abroad, etc.
  • 1
    Yes, -язычный implies a first language whereas -говорящий can refer to any level of command of the spoken language. Commented Jul 14, 2018 at 15:42

Just like it was already mentioned for франкоговорящие/франкоязычные there's relatively widely known and accepted франкофон. Actually there's less known and less used however existing term лузофон for one who talks Portuguese.

There are also англофоны, синофоны (for Chinese speakers) and even румынофоны however this terms are used extremely rare. One just can not add -фон to some derivative of language name, it doesn't work that way.

In some texts that tend to sound as scientific and official as possible one can even find германофон but that's definitely rather a curiosity.

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