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    What are the five most spoken Romance languages?

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  2. › wiki › List_of_Romance_languagesRomance languages - Wikipedia

    Romance languages. Ibero-Romance: Portuguese, Galician, Asturleonese / Mirandese, Spanish, Aragonese, Ladino ( Judaeo-Spanish ); Occitano-Romance: Catalan / Valencian, Occitan (lenga d'oc), Gascon; Gallo-Romance: French / Oïl languages, Franco-Provençal (Arpitan); Rhaeto-Romance: Romansh, Ladin, ...

    Form ("to Sing")
    Nuorese Sardinian
    cantare [kanˈtare̞]
    cantare [kanˈtare]
    Past participle
    cantatu [kanˈtatu]
    cantato [kanˈtato]
    cantande [kanˈtande̞]
    cantando [kanˈtando]
    canto [ˈkanto̞]
    canto [ˈkanto]
    • What Are The Romance Languages?
    • How Many People Speak A Romance Language?
    • Why Are They called Romance Languages?
    • Where Do The Romance Languages Come from?
    • How Similar Are The Romance Languages?

    Deciding what’s a “language” and what’s a “dialect” is a tricky business, because languages really exist on a spectrum, rather than in separate boxes. Therefore, there isn’t full agreement as to exactly how many Romance languages there are. Ethnologuebreaks the Romance languages down into 44 different languages. The most spoken Romance languages are Spanish, French, Portuguese, Italian and Romanian, which combined are spoken by over 90 percent of those who speak a Romance language. The full list of Romance languages is pretty long: Aragonese, Aromanian, Asturian, Arpitan, Catalan, Corsican, Emilian, Extremaduran, Fala, French, Cajun French, Friulian, Galician, Istriot, Italian, Jèrriais, Judeo-Italian, Ladin, Ladino, Ligurian, Lombard, Minderico, Mirandese, Napoletano-Calabrese, Occitan, Picard, Piedmontese, Portuguese, Romagnol, Romanian, Istro Romanian, Megleno Romanian, Romansh, Campidanese Sardinian, Gallurese Sardinian, Logudorese Sardinian, Sassarese Sardinian, Shuadit, Sicili...

    Getting an exact count of how many people speak a Romance language is a tad difficult. If you tally together the population of every Romance language, you get 1.2 billion speakers in the world. This doesn’t take into account that there’s overlap in these populations, however. There are many, many multilingual people in Europe, so this inflates the numbers a bit. If you only count the top five languages by user, however, the number is still over 1.1 billion, so it’s a pretty safe bet that about one-seventh of the population alive today speaks a Romance language.

    The word “romance” — with both a capital and a lower-case “r” — has a lot of meanings in English. Like me, you might have thought at one point that they were called Romance languages because they’re the most romantic languages. The root of the word “romance,” however, goes back to the Latin rōmānicus, which meant “Roman.” The language of Rome was Latin, and all of the Romance languages are descended from Vulgar Latin, so the name fits.

    The one factor that unites all of the Romance languages is that they’re all evolved from Vulgar Latin. Like “Romance,” the word “Vulgar” here doesn’t mean what you’d normally think when you hear “vulgar.” It comes from the Latin vulgus,meaning “common people,” and so Vulgar Latin refers to the many dialects of Latin spoken by regular people. This contrasts with Classical Latin, which was the standardized version of the language that is still used in certain religious and scientific contexts today (though arguably, it’s a dead language). Because of the expansiveness of the Roman Empire, Vulgar Latin was spoken all across Europe in the first few centuries CE. While the governmental empire began to collapse in the 5th century, the language was still spread all around the continent. As the communities started to close off from each other and individual kingdoms sprang up, the languages drifted apart and started sounding more distinct. The languages spread even further apart with the var...

    It can be tempting to hope that if you know one Romance language, you’ll basically be able to understand any of the others. But can Romance language speakers really understandeach other more easily than other languages? The answer is yes — but a conditional yes. Depending on which Romance language you learn, you may have an easier or harder time understanding other Romance languages. Part of that has to do with the linguistic “distance” between various languages. Learning Brazilian Portuguese, for example, will prepare you to understand the Portuguese spoken in Portugal, despite there being some differences between the two. French and Spanish are more clearly different, but there’s still enough mutual intelligibility that a French speaker and a Spanish speaker could probably have a rudimentary conversation. We won’t go into exactly how mutually intelligibleeach Romance language pair is here, but it’s very likely that learning one of them will at the very least make learning other Ro...

  3. What Are the Romance Languages? Italian. Considered to be the most similar to vulgar Latin of all the romance languages, Italian is an important... French. If Italian is the most similar romance language to vulgar Latin, French is one of the least similar. Spanish. Spanish is also a romance ...

    • What Was Vulgar Latin?
    • Fabulare Romanice
    • Simplifications of Latin
    • Today's Romance Languages and Locations
    • Resources and Further Reading

    Romans spoke and wrote graffiti in a less polished language than they used in their literature. Even Cicero wrote plainly in personal correspondence. The simplified Latin language of the common (Roman) people is called Vulgar Latinbecause Vulgar is an adjectival form of the Latin for "the crowd." This makes Vulgar Latin the people's language. It was this language that the soldiers took with them and that interacted with native languages and the language of later invaders, particularly the Moors and Germanic invasions, to produce the Romance languages throughout the area that had once been the Roman Empire.

    By the 6th century, to speak in the Latin-derived language was to fabulare romanice, according to Milton Mariano Azevedo (from the Spanish and Portuguese Department at the University of California at Berkeley). Romanicewas an adverb suggesting "in the Roman manner" that was shortened to "romance"; whence, Romance languages.

    Some of the general changes to Latin were the loss of terminal consonants, diphthongs tended to be reduced to simple vowels, the distinctions between long and short versions of the same vowels were losing significance, and, together with the decline in terminal consonants that provided case endings, led to a loss of inflection. The Romance languages, therefore, needed another way to show the roles of words in sentences, so the relaxed word orderof Latin was replaced with a fairly fixed order. 1. Romanian: One of the changes to Vulgar Latin made in Romania was that an unstressed "o" became "'u," so you may see Rumania (the country) and Rumanian (the language), instead of Romania and Romanian. (Moldova-)Romania is the only country in the Eastern European area that speaks a Romance language. At the time of the Romans, the Dacians may have spoken a Thracian language. The Romans fought the Dacians during the reigns of Trajan who defeated their king, Decebalus. Men from the Roman Province...

    Linguists may prefer a list of the Romance languages with more detail and more thoroughness. This comprehensive list gathers the the names, geographic divisions, and national locations of major divisions of some modern Romance languages around the world. Certain romance languages are dead or dying.

    Azevedo, Milton M. Portuguese: A Linguistic Introduction. Cambridge University, 2005.
    Lewis, M. Paul, editor. Ethnologue: Languages of the World. 16th ed., SIL International, 2009.
    Ostler, Nicholas. Ad Infinitum: A Biography of Latin. HarperCollins, 2007.
    • Ancient History And Latin Expert
    • Spanish (Castilian) Spanish, also called Castilian (Castile), is the most spoken Ibero-Romance language. It is the official language of Spain and 19 Latin American nations.
    • Portuguese. Portuguese and Spanish are the most alike languages as they both developed on the Iberian Peninsula. Both relate to the Ibero-Romance group.
    • French. French is the Occitan-Romance group. It probably is the most internationally significant Romance language worldwide. French is the second most commonly taught language after English.
    • Italian. Italian is part of the Italo-Romance group includes all the Italian dialects. It is mostly derived from Latin. Southern Italian, today is the most similar to Eastern Romance Language.
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