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German, Standard

A language of Germany

ISO 639-3deu

Population  75,300,000 in Germany (1990). Population total all countries: 90,294,110.
Region  Also in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Estonia, Finland, France, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Moldova, Mozambique, Namibia, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Puerto Rico, Romania, Russian Federation (Europe), Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United States, Uruguay, Uzbekistan.
Alternate names   Deutsch, Tedesco
Dialects  Major related language areas are Bavarian [bar], Schwäbian [swg], Alemannisch [gsw], Mainfränkisch [vmf], Hessisch, Palatinian, Rheinfränkisch, Westfälisch [wep], Saxonian, Thuringian, Brandenburgisch, and Low Saxon [nds]. Many varieties are not mutually inherently intelligible. Our present treatment is incomplete. Standard German is one High German variety, which developed from the chancery of Saxony, gaining acceptance as the written standard in the 16th and 17th centuries. High German refers to dialects and languages in the upper Rhine region. Lexical similarity: 60% with English, 29% with French.
Classification  Indo-European, Germanic, West, High German, German, Middle German, East Middle German
Language use  National language. 28,000,000 L2 speakers.
Language development  Taught in primary and secondary schools. Fully developed. Bible: 1466–2004.
Writing system  Latin script. Latin script, Fraktur variant, used until 1940. Runic script, no longer in use.
Comments  Based equally on East Upper German and East Middle German. Christian.

Also spoken in:


Language name   German, Standard
Population  7,500,000 in Austria (J. A. Hawkins 1987).
Dialects  Kärntnerisch.
Language use  National language.


Language name   German, Standard
Population  150,000 in Belgium (Hawkins 1987).
Region  Liège Province, Eupen and Sankt-Vith cantons, municipalities: Eupen, Kelmis, Lontzen, Raeren, Amel, Bnlingen, Bntchenbach, Sankt-Vith, and Burg-Reuland.
Language map  Belgium, Luxembourg and Netherlands
Language use  In Liège Province.

Czech Republic

Language name   German, Standard
Population  39,100 in Czech Republic (2001 census).
Region  Erzgebirge, a border mountain range.
Language use  Also use Czech [ces].


Language name   German, Standard
Population  25,900 in Denmark (2007).
Region  North Slesvig (Sydjylland).
Language map  Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden
Language use  Official regional language.
Comments  There are German schools.


Language name   German, Standard
Population  33,800 in Hungary (2001 census). Ethnic population: 88,416.
Comments  Germans in Hungary speak other Germanic varieties than Standard German at home.


Language name   German, Standard
Population  225,000 in Italy (Vincent 1987).
Region  North, Trentino-Alto Adige, South Tyrol, Bolzano Province.
Alternate names  Tedesco
Language use  Official language in Alto-Adige region.
Language development  Taught in primary and secondary schools.


Language name   German, Standard
Population  958,000 in Kazakhstan. Population excludes Plautdietsch [pdt].


Language name   German, Standard
Language use  Official language.


Language name   German, Standard
Population  10,900 in Luxembourg (Johnstone and Mandryk 2001).
Language use  National language. Taught in school as L2.


Language name   German, Standard
Population  166,000 in Paraguay. 19,000 L1 speakers of Plautdietsch.


Language name   German, Standard
Population  500,000 in Poland (1998).
Region  Silesia and elsewhere.


Language name   German, Standard
Population  45,100 in Romania (2002 census).
Region  Transylvania.
Dialects  Transylvania.
Comments  Over 70% of the 500,000 1988 population has emigrated to Germany (Johnstone 1993). People known as ‘Saxons’.


Language name   German, Standard
Population  5,410 in Slovakia (2001 census).
Language use  Also use Hungarian [hun] or Slovak [slk].
Comments  Christian.


Language name   German, Standard
Language use  Official language. Not a L1 for many.
Language development  Main language in education in Schwyzerdütsch (German) and Rheto-Romansch-speaking areas.