Hebrew is a West Semitic language of the Afroasiatic language family. Historically, it is regarded as the language of the Hebrews/Israelites and their ancestors. Other Jewish languages originated among diaspora Jews. The Hebrew language was also used by non-Jewish groups, such as the ethnically related Samaritans. Hebrew had ceased to be an everyday spoken language by around 200 CE, and survived into the medieval period only as the language of Jewish liturgy and rabbinical literature. Then in the 19th century it was revived as a spoken and literary language, and according to Ethnologue, is now the language of 5.3 million people worldwide, mainly in Israel. Wikipedia