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BASQUE (euskara)

The Basque country (Euskal Herria) is in the north of Spain and the south west of France.  Basque is the official language of Basque Country. It is spoken either side of the Western Pyrenees: in Spain in the autonomous communities of Euskadi and Navarra, and Pyrénées Atlantiques in France. These territories are collectively known in the language as Euskal Herria, the Basque Country.


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This language has 800,000 speakers. Unlike all other Western European languages, Basque is not part of the Indo-European family and is unrelated to any other known language.


Brief history

The language dates back to pre-Roman times, but the first written records don't appear until the 10th century AD, as clarification notes on a Latin book of sermons. Although most of the notes were in Spanish, some are in Basque, documenting that both languages co-existed in the area where the book was found. Basque first appeared in writing in Latin religious texts, the Glosas Emilianenses, dating from the 11th century. The first published book in Basque was a collection of poems entitled Linguae Vasconum Primitiae, published by Bernard Detchepare in 1545.


Regulatory body




  • Elhuyar Basque–Spanish Dictionary
  • Morris Basque–English Dictionary
  • Hiztegia 3000 Online bidirectional Spanish–Euskara dictionary



Modern Basque dialectology distinguishes five dialects.

  • The Western dialect
  • The Central dialect
  • Upper Navarrese
  • Lower Navarrese-Lapurdian
  • Souletin (Zuberoan)

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