Facts and Figures About the Italian Language

italianWhen in Italy you are probably under the impression that everyone is speaking Italian, huh well not really :( In fact people in Italy speak several different languages in Italy, as well as a number of dialects. So if you have questions like:

  1. Where is Italian spoken?

  2. How many Italian speakers are there?

  3. What other languages are spoken in Italy?

  4. What are the major dialects of Italian?

The three things that Italians have of their own, in most regions of Italy have, is their own accent, dialect, and sometimes their own language. The various languages and dialects spoken in Italy evolved over centuries and persisted separate from standard Italian for a variety of reasons. Here are some data relating to the Italian language.

How Many Italian Speakers Are There?

Italian is classified as an Indo-European language. According to Ethnologue: Languages of Italy there are 55,000,000 speakers of Italian in Italy. The speakers include those who are bilingual in Italian and regional diversities as well as those for whom Italian is a second language. There are another 6,500,000 speakers of Italian in other countries.

Where is Italian Spoken?

Besides Italy, Italian is spoken in 29 other countries:

    • Argentina

    • Australia

    • Belgium

    • Bosnia and Herzegovina

    • Brazil

    • Canada

    • Croatia

    • Egypt

    • Eritrea

    • France

    • Germany

    • Israel

    • Libya

    • Liechtenstein

    • Luxembourg

    • Paraguay

    • Philippines

    • Puerto Rico

    • Romania

    • San Marino

    • Saudi Arabia

    • Slovenia

    • Switzerland

    • Tunisia

    • United Arab Emirates

    • United Kingdom

    • Uruguay

    • USA

    • Vatican State.

Italian is also recognized as an official language in Croatia, San Marino, Slovenia, and Switzerland.

What Are the Major Dialects of Italian?

There are dialects of Italian and there are dialects of Italy. The major dialects of Italian include:

    • Toscano

    • Abruzzese

    • Pugliese

    • Umbro

    • Laziale

    • marchigiano central

    • cicolano-reatino-aquilano

    • andmolisano

What Other Languages Are Spoken in Italy?
There are several distinct local languages in Italy, including:

    • emiliano-romagnolo

    • friulano (alternate names include furlan, frioulan, frioulian,priulian)

    • ligure (lìguru)

    • Lombardo

    • napoletano(nnapulitano)

    • piemontese (piemontéis)

    • sardarese (a language of Central Sardinian also known as sard or logudorese)

    • sardu (a language of Southern Sardinian also known ascampidanese or campidese) siciliano

Words translated by CCJK


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