Frisian is, in fact, a group of Germanic languages spoken by about 500 thousand people in the Netherlands and Germany. They are part of the Anglo-Frisian group but are not mutually intelligible with English. Depending on the location, Frisian languages have been influenced by Dutch, German and Danish.
Division of Frisian languages
West Frisian is the most common one. It is an official language of the Friesland province in the Netherlands but is spoken in several other places as well. Its insular varieties are often unintelligible on the mainland.
North Frisian is a language of many inhabitants of the Nodrfriesland district in Germany and a few islands. It has several strongly dissimilar dialects.
The third one is known as Saterland Frisian and is spoken in one place only, the municipality of Saterland. The terrain is surrounded by marshes, which helped to avoid strong pressures of the German language.
Interesting facts about Frisian
An increasing number of Dutch natives are learning West Frisian as their second language.
Saterland Frisian is an endangered language as only a small community uses it and there is a considerable lack of institutional support to remedy the situation. Along with North Frisian, they are classified as minority languages in Germany.
Many speakers of the Frisian dialects may be found in the USA and Canada.
The Ried fan de Fryske Beweging was established to preserve the West Frisian language and culture. Since 1938, the Fryske Academy researches the language and history of Frisian regions. One of their projects regards preparing a Frisian dictionary.
Frisian languages are a small yet interesting group of languages. If you need translation into any dialect, contact us and we will do our best to help you establish a working relationship with the Frisian regions.
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