French is a Romance language of the Indo-European family. It descended from the Vulgar Latin of the Roman Empire, as did all Romance languages.
French is a Romance language of the Indo-European family. It descended from the Vulgar Latin of the Roman Empire, as did all Romance languages. French has evolved from Gallo-Romance, the spoken Latin in Gaul, and more specifically in Northern Gaul. Like all languages, French has evolved considerably in the course of time; the oldest known document written in a form of French, rather than late Latin, is the “Serments de Strasbourg", written in the year 842. In Medieval times, different forms of French flourished as the language of literature in both France and England: famous works from the time include the “Chansons de geste" (Songs of chivalry), notably the epic “Chanson de Roland", the Roman de la Rose (the Romance of the Rose), and the Arthurian legends(many written in French in England). By the time of the Renaissance, French had evolved to a point where writers such as Rabelais and Ronsard were writing in a language that is still quite comprehensible to a modern day educated reader; as for the great writers of seventeenth century France, Molière, Corneille and Racine, they remain quite understandable to this day.
One of the most popular languages spoken around the globe today is the French language. While many may assume that languages don’t spread far from their native borders that is far from true in the case of many of the world’s major languages. The French language is a perfect example of a dialect that defies borders and spans the globe as a first or second language for millions.
After English and German, French is the third most widely used language on the Internet, ahead of Spanish. An ability to understand French offers an alternative view of the world through communication with French speakers from all over the world and news from the leading French-language international media (TV5, France 24 and Radio France Internationale).
French is spoken in France, Canada, Switzerland, Belgium, Luxembourg, Monaco, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea, Burkina Faso, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Niger, Senegal, Haiti, Lebanon, Martinique, Vietnam, Central African Republic, Chad, Madagascar, Cameroon, Gabon, and other countries.
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