TEXT 2. GERMANIC LANGUAGES
Germanic, or Teutonic, languages are a sub-family of the Indo-European family of languages. They include Dutch, English, German, the Scandinavian languages, and several extinct languages1.
The Germanic languages are commonly grouped according to linguistic similarities into three branches - the East, North and West Germanic branches. The East Germanic group consists of the language of the Goths. The North Germanic, or Scandinavian, languages include Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, and Icelandic.
The West Germanic languages are divided into two groups - High German and Low German. The principal High German language is Modern German, also known as Standard German. The surviving Low German languages are Dutch, Flemish, Frisian2 and English.
Dutch is the language of the Netherlands, Flemish, or Belgian Dutch, is spoken in Northern Belgium. More than half of the Belgian population speaks Flemish, although French is current throughout the country. Frisian is spoken by people on the coast and coastal islands of the North Sea, particularly in the north Netherlands province of Frisland3. Frisian differs considerably from Dutch and is nearest of the Germanic languages to English.
English, the most widespread of the world's languages, is considered to be an offshoot4 of an Anglo-Frisian dialect that must have been fairly widespread before the Germanic tribes invaded England.
No common parent5 of the Germanic languages survives, but linguists refer to the hypothetical ancestor as primitive Germanic or proto-Germanic6.
1) What languages do Germanic languages include?
2) What are the main three Germanic branches?
3) What languages does the North Germanic group include?
4) What languages does the West Germanic group include?
5) What language is spoken in Northern Belgium?
6) In what country is Frisian spoken?
1. extinct languages - вымершие языки
2. Frisian - фризский язык
3. Frisland - Фрисландия
4. offshoot - ответвление
5. common parent - общий прародитель
6. proto-Germanic - протогерманский язык
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