Western Romance languages
|France, Iberia, Northern Italy, and Switzerland|
Classification of Romance languages
The Gallo-Romance group includes:
- The Langues d'oïl, or Oïl languages. These include Standard French, Picard, Walloon, Lorrain and Norman.
- The Arpitan language, also known as Franco-Provençal. It shares features of both French and the Provençal dialect of Occitan.
- The Rhaeto-Romance languages. They include Romansh of Switzerland, Ladin of the Dolomites area, Friulian of Friuli. Rhaeto-Romance languages can be classified as Gallo-Romance, or as a independant branch of the Western Romance languages.
- The Occitano-Romance languages of Southern France and East Iberia, includes Occitan and Catalan. Occitano-Romance languages can be classified as Gallo-Romance, or as an independant branch of the Western Romance languages.
- The Gallo-Italic languages. They include Piedmontese, Ligurian, Lombard, Emiliano-Romagnolo, Gallo-Italic of Sicily and Gallo-Italic of Basilicata. Gallo-Italic languages can be classified as Gallo-Romance, Northern Italian dialects, or as an independant branch of the Western Romance languages.
The Iberian-Romance group includes:
- The West Iberian languages:
- The Castilian languages: includes Spanish and Judaeo-Spanish.
- The Galician-Portuguese languages: includes Portuguese, Galician, Fala and Uruguayan Portuñol.
- The Astur-Leonese languages: they are, from east to west, Cantabrian, central-eastern Asturian and Leonese proper. Going from north to south, they are Leonese proper, Mirandese, Extremaduran and Barranquenho.
- The Pyrenean–Mozarabic languages: includes Aragonese, and the extinct Mozarabic. Can be classified as West Iberian.
- The East Iberian language, or Catalan language: usually classified as part of Occitano-Romance, see Gallo-Romance above.
Based on mutual intelligibility, Dalby counts a dozen languages: Portuguese, Spanish, Asturian-Leonese, Aragonese, Catalan, Gascon, Provençal, Gallo-Wallon, French, Franco-Provençal, Romansh, and Ladin.
Some classifications include central and southern Italian; the resulting clade is generally called Italo-Western Romance. Other classifications place an Italo-Dalmatian clade in with Eastern Romance. Sardinian does not fit into either Western or Eastern Romance, and may have split off before either.
Today the four most-widely spoken standardized Western Romance languages are Spanish (c. 410 million native), Portuguese (c. 220 million native, another 45 million or so second-language speakers, mainly in Lusophone Africa), French (c. 75 million native speakers, another 70 million or so second-language speakers, mostly in Francophone Africa), and Catalan (c. 7.2 million native). Many of these languages have large numbers of non-native speakers; this is especially the case for French, in widespread use throughout West Africa as a lingua franca.
- Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Western Romance". Glottolog 2.2. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.
- David Dalby, 1999/2000, The Linguasphere register of the world’s languages and speech communities. Observatoire Linguistique, Linguasphere Press. Volume 2. Oxford.
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