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French Language MapPhoto: Public domain
Official language is French, in addition, Breton (Brittany) is spoken by minorities, Occitan (the south), Basque (in the western Pyrenees), German (Alsace-Lorraine), Dutch (French Flanders), Catalan (Roussillon), Italian ( around Nice), Corsican (in Corsica).
The French language is a Romance language spoken by approximately 100 million people as their mother tongue, of which approximately 60 million in France. French is also spoken in Belgium down the line Viset-Mouscron and Brussels, in Switzerland (Suisse romande), Italy (Aosta Valley), Haiti and Canada (Quebec), and in many former French colonies the language of administration and administration is used. French is the continuation of Vulgar Latin, which was introduced and developed in Gallia Transalpina by the Roman conquerors (58–50 BC).
The history of French begins when the Carolingian Renaissance, which revived the study of Classical Latin, made people aware of a gap between Latin, language of administration, jurisdiction and religion, and everyday language. This is evidenced by a decision of the Council of Tours (813), which from then on had to be preached in the vernacular ("lingua romana rustica"). Broadly speaking, three periods can be distinguished in the history of French: Old French (early 9th - early 14th century), Middle French (early 14th - early 17th century) and modern French (early 17th century - present).
The French language originally consisted of Latin words introduced by the Romans, supplemented by words of Celtic and Frankish origin. From the 12th century onwards, these "folk words" have been borrowed from Latin, the "learned" words. In the 16th century, many words were also borrowed from Italian. Many words have also been borrowed from Dutch and, since the 18th century, also from English.
Especially in recent decades, much has been borrowed from English in the fields of technology, sports, fashion, and the like, which has resulted in the derisive term Franglais. French purists oppose this "invasion" of foreign words.
Bussmann, K. / Bourgondië : kastelen, kloosters, en kathedralen in het hart van Frankrijk
Evers, K. / Bourgondië
Frankrijk : natuurreisgids
Keuning, T. / Bourgondië, Champagne
CIA - World Factbook
BBC - Country ProfilesLast updated December 2022
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