Contrary to the common belief Catalan is more related to French and Latin than it is to Spanish. This is due to the fact that the language originated in the mountains in between France and Spain. These mountains are known as Pyrenees Mountains. The Catalan language has been derived from Vulgar Latin. It was one of the most spoken languages in the Iberian Peninsula in the 9th century.
Some Amazing Facts About The Catalan Language
Speakers: More than 9 million people speak Catalan language. It is spoken mainly in Catalonia, Valencia and the Balearic Islands. You can also find a small number of speakers all over the world.
Understanding Of The Catalan Language: More than 9.8 million people understand the Catalan language which means that the number of people who understand the Catalan language is greater than the actual speakers of the language.
Script: Like most other Romance languages, Catalan language is written from left to right.
Ban: For many years the Catalan language was banned in Spain. The focus was to force Spain as the official language of Catalonia and all of Spain. The ban was lifted in mid 1970s after a lengthy struggle. From 1939 to 1975, it was insultingly considered as a dialect of the Spanish language even though Spanish and Catalan language have many differences.
First Written In: The Catalan language was first written in somewhere around the 11th century.
Dialects: The Catalan language is spoken in six major dialects. The dialects are based on location. The eastern dialect is different from the western dialects. These dialects are as following;
· Northwestern Catalan
· Central Catalan
Official Language: The Catalan Language is the joint official language of Catalonia, Valencia and Balearic Island. The other official language being Spanish. It is the sole official language in country of Andorra. In addition to that it is also a joint official language in Alghero which is a beautiful city in Italy.
Romance Language: The Catalan language is a Romance language, which means that it has been derived from Vulgar Latin and share a lot of similarities with other European languages.
Catalan Literature: Catalan literature took off in the middle ages. You can find some very interesting literature written in the Catalan language. Tirant lo Blanc is considered as one of the most epic romantic novels in the history of the world. The novel was written by Valencian writer Joanot Martorell.
Valencian Language: The Valencian language is a very detailed language in itself however some people consider it to be a dialect of the Catalan language.
Political Importance: The Pro Catalonia Independence group uses the Catalan language as a major point to show the difference of culture between Catalonia and the rest of Spain.
Alphabets: Like English, Catalan language also has 26 alphabets.
Relation To Other Languages: Catalan language has more in common with languages like French, Italian and Latin as compared to Spanish. It is also closely related to the Occitan language.