Real Academia Española - Diccionario de la lengua españolaThe answer is a whopping 22.  New additions to the Diccionario de la Lengua Española de la Real Academia Española (Dictionary of the Spanish Language of the Royal Spanish Academy) require the consensus of the 22 academies of the Spanish language. From Spain, to the United States to South America to the Philippines, these academies represent all the Spanish speaking nations of the world.

Recently, the Royal Spanish Academy, the foremost authority on the Spanish language, was in the news for adding Scientology religion to their dictionary. The dictionary describes the term cienciología (Scientology) as “Movimiento religioso de origen estadounidense que pretende promover el conocimiento introspectivo mediante ciertas técnicas.” “A religious movement, originating from the United States of America that seeks to promote awareness through certain introspective techniques.”

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More information about the history of the Spanish language can be found in our new book, The Story of Spanish, (to be released in April 2013, St. Martin’s Press).

The Story of Spanish