German, Standard

Print

A language of Germany

Alternate Names
Deutsch, Tedesco
Population

75,300,000 in Germany (1990). Population total all countries: 83,812,810.

Location

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, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United States, Uruguay, Uzbekistan.

Language Status

1 (National). De facto national language.

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, 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 [eng], 29% with French [fra].

Language Use

28,000,000 L2 speakers.

Language Development
Taught in primary and secondary schools. Fully developed. Bible: 1466–2004.
Writing
Braille script. Latin script, primary usage. Latin script, Fraktur variant, used until 1940. Runic script, no longer in use.
Other Comments

Based equally on East Upper German and East Middle German. Christian.

Also spoken in:

Expand All Collapse All