In 1859, Ludwig Zamenhof was born in the Polish city of Bialystok, which at that time was part of the Russian Empire. Even while studying in a real gymnasium, the teenager noticed that his hometown was inhabited by people of various nationalities: Poles, Germans, Jews. All this created difficulties in communication, and Ludwig thought about creating an artificial language in which all the peoples of the world could communicate.
Later Zamerhof moved to Warsaw, entered a classical gymnasium and began working on a universal language. A few years later, the young man began searching for a publisher, which lasted two whole years. Nobody was eager to publish a textbook of an incomprehensible language.
Only in July 1887 was the first Esperanto textbook published. The author signed himself with the pseudonym "Esperanto", which means "hopeful." The pseudonym soon became the name of a new language.
It is interesting that Esperanto quickly gained popularity in the world and since 1905 international congresses of Esperanto have been held. And the creator of the language, L. Zamerhof, began to translate literary works into Esperanto. Among the first translations were the works of Russian classics: "Snowstorm" by Pushkin, "Inspector General" by Gogol and others.
It is believed that 150 hours of study are sufficient to study Esperanto. It is difficult to say how many people in the world speak Esperanto. Various sources give figures from several hundred thousand to several million. Moreover, hundreds of people call Esperanto their native language: these are mainly children from international families, where parents communicate with each other in Esperanto.
According to the census, about a thousand people speak this language in our country.
All over the world, about 250 newspapers and magazines are published in Esperanto, several radio stations broadcast in this language, and there are several music groups singing in Esperanto.
In the Soviet Union, at the initiative of Leon Trotsky, Esperanto was actively promoted back in the 1920s. The Bolsheviks saw in him the language of the future "world revolution", in which communists of all countries would be able to communicate freely. But in the second half of the 30s, Esperantists were repressed. They were accused of Trotskyism and espionage.
Despite the fact that people who speak Esperanto live in 120 countries of the world, it never became the language of international communication. Printed editions are published in small editions. For example, the largest Esperanto magazine has a circulation of only 5, 500 copies. And the circulation of books rarely exceeds 300 copies.