- 250 words constitute the essential core of a language, those without which you cannot construct any sentence.
- 750 words constitute those that are used every single day by every person who speaks the language.
- 2500 words constitute those that should enable you to express everything you could possibly want to say, albeit often by awkward circumlocutions.
- 5000 words constitute the active vocabulary of native speakers without higher education.
- 10,000 words constitute the active vocabulary of native speakers with higher education.
- 20,000 words constitute what you need to recognize passively in order to read, understand, and enjoy a work of literature such as a novel by a notable author.
From a research by Alexander Arguelles