Frisian language

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Frisian language,

member of the West Germanic group of the Germanic subfamily of the Indo-EuropeanIndo-European,
family of languages having more speakers than any other language family. It is estimated that approximately half the world's population speaks an Indo-European tongue as a first language.
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 family of languages (see Germanic languagesGermanic languages,
subfamily of the Indo-European family of languages, spoken by about 470 million people in many parts of the world, but chiefly in Europe and the Western Hemisphere.
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). It has a number of dialects and is spoken by more than 300,000 people, most of whom speak West Frisian and live in Friesland, a province of the Netherlands. North Frisian is spoken along the North Sea coast of Germany and on the Frisian Islands, and East Frisian is spoken farther inland in NW Germany. Speakers of various dialects are also found in the United States. Frisian is a subject of instruction in the schools of Friesland and also has a literature of its own. Of all foreign languages, it is most like English.

Bibliography

See K. Zondag, ed., Bilingual Education in Friesland (1982).