Germanic languages

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The Germanic languages are a branch of the Indo-European language family, initially spoken in northern and central Europe and now spread in many parts of the World. Those with the most speakers are English, German and Dutch and are used as state languages in several countries. Other Germanic state languages are Afrikaans, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian and Icelandic. Faeroese and Frisian are regional, official languages. The remaining Germanic languages, Yiddish and Low German, have no official status and are endangered. Scots is viewed either as an English dialect or as an independent language. Luxemburgish is a German dialect with an official status.

The mother tongue, Proto-Germanic, was probably spoken until the Late Antiquity. A lot of varieties derived from it in the Late Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages. Some of them like Old Norse or Frankish evolved toward the current languages. Others like Gothic, Lombardic or Burgundian died out.

A traditional and somewhat simplified classification of the current languages is the following.