Languages of Poland

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Languages of Poland
RegionalKashubian (108,000); German (96,000); Belarusian (26,000); Hungarian (1,000); Ruthenian (6,000); Lithuanian (5,000); Slovak (1,000); Czech (1,000);
Dispersed: Romani (14,000); Armenian (2,000)
ImmigrantRussian (20,000), Ukrainian (25,000), Vietnamese (3,000), Greek (2,000), Chinese (1,000), Bulgarian (1,000), Turkish (1,000), Hindi (1,000) and others[1]
ForeignEnglish (33%)[2]
Russian (26%)
German (19%)
SignedPolish Sign Language
Sourceebs_243_en.pdf (

The main language spoken in Poland is Polish.

The deaf communities use Polish Sign Language belonging to the German family of Sign Languages.

According to the Act of 6 January 2005 on national and ethnic minorities and on the regional languages,[3] 16 other languages have officially recognised status of minority languages: 1 regional language, 10 languages of 9 national minorities (the minorities that have their own independent state elsewhere) and 5 languages of 4 ethnic minorities (spoken by the members of minorities not having a separate state elsewhere). Jewish and Romani minorities have 2 recognised minority languages each.

The following languages are spoken in Poland as well:

Languages used in household contacts[edit]

Population by type and number of languages used in household contacts in 2011.[4]

Languages having the status of national minority's language[edit]

Languages having the status of ethnic minority's language[edit]

The official recognition gives to the representatives of the minority certain rights (under certain conditions prescribed by the laws): of education in their language, of having the language established as the secondary administrative language or help language in their municipalities, of financial support of the state to the promotion of their language and culture etc.

Languages having the status of regional language[edit]

Languages without officially recognised status[edit]

  • Wymysorys - is an endangered language with very few speakers, native to Wilamowice, but contrary to Karaim language having a similar situation, it was practically unknown of in the time of preparation of the forementioned Act.
  • Silesian - status severely disputed, question whether a dialect of Polish or separate language considered a political issue. Ethnologue distinguishes Silesian language and Upper Silesian dialect of Polish language.

Languages of new diasporas and immigrant communities[edit]

These languages are not recognised as minority languages, as the Act of 2005 defines minority as "a group of Polish citizens (...) striving to preserve its language, culture or tradition, (...) whose ancestors have been living on the present territory of the Republic of Poland for at least 100 years":

  • Greek - language of the big Greek diaspora in Poland of 1950's.
  • Vietnamese - the biggest immigrant community in Poland, since 1960's, having their own newspapers, schools, churches etc.

Dead and artificial languages[edit]

Among languages used in Poland, Ethnologue.[6] mentions also:

but does not mention two other known defunct languages:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Nowak, Lucyna, ed. (2013). Ludność. Stan i struktura demograficzno-społeczna. Narodowy Spis Powszechny Ludności i Mieszkań 2011 (PDF). Główny Urząd Statystyczny. ISBN 978-83-7027-521-1. Retrieved 2013-04-14.
  2. ^ "SPECIAL EUROBAROMETER 386 Europeans and their Languages" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-01-06.
  3. ^ "Act of 6 January 2005 on national and ethnic minorities and on the regional languages" (PDF) – via
  4. ^ Struktura narodowo-etniczna, językowa i wyznaniowa ludności Polski, p. 70, p. 173
  5. ^ According to Ethnologue the following Romani languages are spoken in Poland: Romani Vlax, Romani Carpathian, Romani Sinte, Baltic Romani. See: Ethnologue. Languages of the World, Ethnologue report for Poland
  6. ^ Ethnologue. Languages of the World, Ethnologue report for Poland

External links[edit]