"We speak English" - that's a correct and common way of saying.

Is it possible to say "We speak the English language"? Yes, it sounds bulky and non-English, but it doesn't seem incorrect.

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    Both expressions are equally idiomatic and grammatically correct, and the second doesn't sound "non-English" at all, nor the least bit bulky. It's a slightly more emphatic way of putting it, and in some contexts might even imply a bit of pride, but I wouldn't bat an eye if I heard someone say it. I'm curious to know why you think it might be "non-English". – P. E. Dant Reinstate Monica Nov 19 '16 at 7:50
  • books.google.com/ngrams/… – Khan Nov 19 '16 at 8:50
  • Yes, it's correct. Because English in the phrase is adjectival – user178049 Nov 19 '16 at 9:32
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    I'm putting on my helmet and bullet-proof vest and going with Yulia on this one. In more decades than I care to remember, I've never read/ heard anyone say: "I speak the English language", however correct it might be. – Ronald Sole Nov 19 '16 at 14:27
  • @RonaldSole You would not require armor in conversation with me, and I've had occasion to utter those words; most recently, I responded in exactly that way to someone who asked: "Do you speak Amurcan?" Admittedly, the phrase might not be heard in the Jack-in-the-Box drive-thru or at the laundromat, but it's English, and nothing odd about it. – P. E. Dant Reinstate Monica Nov 19 '16 at 23:07

We speak [LANGUAGE].

Now, if people are having an argument, and one wants to emphasize the language, one can say:

We speak the English language. [for instance, at this assembly, in this situation, at this meeting].

If you say that, the implication is that you do not speak some other language at a particular place or time.

Please note: the word English could be replaced by the name of any language.

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You can say either "We speak English" or "We speak the English language", without any difference in meaning.

As the word English as a noun means the English language, the phrase "the English language" is not much used. On the other hand, the usage of the single word "English" is most common and idiomatic. The Ngram Viewers in the comments above also indicate this fact.

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