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Languages Spoken in South Africa - Afrikaans

Infomation about the Afrikaans language, one of South Africa's 11 official languages brought to you by Conference Venues South Africa

Afrikaans is a language mainly spoken in South Africa and Namibia. It is the primary language used by two related ethnic groups, the Afrikaners and the Coloureds. It is also spoken as a first language by many Tswana people in South Africa's North West Province. Afrikaans is Dutch for African, i.e. The African form of the Dutch language. The dialect became known as Cape Dutch.

Afrikaans was considered a Dutch dialect until the late 19th century, when it began to be recognised as a distinct language, and it gained equal status with Dutch and English as an official language in South Africa in 1925. Dutch remained an official language until the new 1961 constitution finally stipulated the two official languages in South Africa to be Afrikaans and English

Afrikaans is linguistically closely related to 17th and 18th century Dutch dialects spoken in North and South Holland and, by extension, to modern Dutch. Today, speakers of each language can make themselves understood quite easily by speakers of the other.

The Afrikaans Language Monument is located on a hill overlooking Paarl, Western Cape Province, South Africa. Completed in 1975, it commemorates the semi centenary of Afrikaans being declared an official language of South Africa separate from Dutch.

 


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