- Language: Basque
- Alternate names: VASCUENCE, EUSKERA
- Language code: eus
- Language family: Isolate
- Number of speakers: 580,000 (Language use
Basque Language, language spoken by the Basques, the people inhabiting north central Spain and the department of Pyrénées-Atlantiques in southwestern France. The Basque name for their language is Euskara. The language has a number of dialects, of which the chief are Guipúzcoan, Biscayan, and Navarrese in Spain and Labourdin and Navarrais in France.
Batua is based on Guipuzcoan, the central and most widely known dialect. A fair amount of inherent intelligibility among all regional varieties except Souletin. Regional varieties are sometimes preferred for oral use, but in Spain there is also a fairly strong desire for the Batua unified standard. Bilingualism in Castillian, Catalan sometimes. Ages 2 to 20 and over 50 as first language, all ages as first or second language in mainly Basque-speaking areas. 'Euzkadi' is the name of the Basque region, not for the language. Official language. Dictionary. Grammar. SOV; prepositions; genitives, articles, adjectives, numerals, relatives after noun heads; question word initial; verb affix gender agreement obligatory; prefix marks causative; comparative shown lexically. Batua uses a unified orthography. Deciduous forest. Mountain slope, coastal, riverine. sea level to 1,000 meters. Christian. Bible 1855-1994.
The Basque Origin
Linguists have tried for a long time to trace the origin of the language. Most linguists consider it to be an isolate, or language with no known relatives; attempts have been made to show an affinity between Basque and certain other languages such as Iberian? (an ancient language of eastern Spain), Ligurian (an ancient language of northwestern Italy), or the Caucasian languages of the Caucasus region of Georgia and Russia, but no conclusive proof exists for these proposals. Basque was almost certainly spoken in ancient Aquitania, the region of Gascony, France.
The Basque verb
Although the rules governing the use of nouns and pronouns are fairly simple, the conjugation of Basque verbs is extremely complicated. The transitive form of a verb may have as many as 24 variations.