Germanic Languages

The Germanic languages constitute a sub-branch of the Indo-European (IE) language family. The common ancestor of all of the languages in this branch is called Proto-Germanic (also known as Common Germanic), which was spoken in approximately the mid-1st millennium BC in Iron Age northern Europe. Proto-Germanic, along with all of its descendants, is characterized by a number of unique linguistic features, most famously the consonant change known as Grimm's law. Early varieties of Germanic enter history with the Germanic peoples moving south from northern Europe in the 2nd century BC, to settle in north-central Europe.

The most widely spoken Germanic languages are English and German, with approximately 300–400 million and over 100 million native speakers respectively. They belong to the West Germanic family. The West Germanic group also includes other major languages, such as Dutch with 23 million and Afrikaans with over 6 million native speakers;. The North Germanic languages include Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, Icelandic, and Faroese, which have a combined total of about 20 million speakers. The SIL Ethnologue lists 53 different Germanic languages.

Read more about Germanic Languages:  Characteristics, Writing, History, Modern Status, Classification

Other articles related to "germanic languages, germanic, languages, language, germanic language":

Germanic Languages - Common Linguistic Features - Phonology - Table of Outcomes
... The following table shows the main outcomes of Proto-Germanic vowels and consonants in the various older languages ... syllables are quite different, vary from language to language, and depend on a number of other factors, e.g ... deletion of final short vowels (which occurred shortly after Proto-Germanic, and is reflected in the history of all written languages except for Proto-Norse) ...
Sudanese English - Classification and Related Languages - Other Germanic Languages
... English has been forming compound words and affixing existing words separately from the other Germanic languages for over 1500 years and has different habits in that regard ... All of these have cognate suffixes in most or all other Germanic languages, but their usage patterns have diverged, as German "Freiheit" vs ... The Germanic languages Icelandic and Faroese also follow English in this respect, since, like English, they developed independent of German influences ...
Apophony - Indo-European Linguistics - Ablaut Versus Umlaut
... The difference in the vowels results from the influence (in Proto-Germanic or a later Germanic language) of an i or y (which has since been lost) on the vowel which (in these examples) becomes e ... is a process that dates back to Proto-Indo-European times, occurs in all Indo-European languages, and refers to (phonologically) unpredictable vowel alternations of a specific nature ... appearing in different daughter languages ...
Languages Of Scotland - Germanic Languages - Norn Language
... Norn is an extinct North Germanic, West Scandinavian, language that was spoken on Shetland and Orkney, off the north coast of mainland Scotland, and in Caithness ...
List Of Digraphs In Latin Alphabets - C
... In many European languages, ⟨cc⟩ before front vowels represents a sequence such as, e.g ... ⟨ck⟩ is used in many Germanic languages in lieu of ⟨kk⟩ or ⟨cc⟩ to indicate either a geminated /kː/, or a /k/ with a preceding (historically) short vowel ... whole Old spelling Säcke Säk-ke ('sacks') New spelling Säcke Sä-cke Among the modern Germanic languages, ⟨ck⟩ is used mainly in Alsatian, English ...

Famous quotes containing the word languages:

    Wealth is so much the greatest good that Fortune has to bestow that in the Latin and English languages it has usurped her name.
    William Lamb Melbourne, 2nd Viscount (1779–1848)