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Spanish Language


Spanish Language

The national language of Spain is Castilian, additionally there are 7 officially recognised provincial languages.

Following the death of Franco, during whose rule tuition and official use of regional languages was outlawed, there has been a resurgence in the use of these local languages. In some areas this has been almost to the exclusion of Castilian Spanish, although there are governmental moves to redress this and ensure a more balanced approach.

Castilian Castellano: Internationally recognised as Spanish or Espagñol and spoken by about 75% of the population. Worldwide it is estimated that in excess of 350 million people in 44 countries use Castilion and its regional variants as their first language.
Catalan Catala and Valencian Valenciana: This group of languages is spoken by an estimated 10 million people, with perhaps 7 million using it as their primary language. Geographically, it is spoken in the provinces of the eastern seaboard; Catalonia (official language), Valencia (Valenciana) and the Balearic Isles (Balear Catalan) as well as part of Aragon. It is also spoken in Andorra, France and Sardinia and is the 21st most commonly spoken language in Europe (out of 56)
Galician Galego: Galician, which is more akin to Portuguese than Castilian, is the language of the north west of Spain where it is spoken by 3 million people.
Basque Euskera: The language of some 600,000 in the three Basque provinces of Alava (Araba), Biskaia (Biskay) and Gipuzkoa and the northern part of Navarra , as well as about 100,000 in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques region of France. Its origins are unknown.
Asturian Asturiano,Bable: About 450,000 people speak Asturian in the northern province of Asturia, 100,000 as their main language.
Extremaduran Extremeño: Some 200,000 regularly use this archaic Leonese dialect of Castilian.

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