member of the Romance group of the Italic subfamily of the Indo-European family of languages. It is spoken by about 8 million people in Catalonia, Valencia, the Balearic Islands, and part of Aragon in Spain, in the region of Roussillon in SE France, the city of Alghero in Sardinia, and in the tiny nation Andorra (where it is the official tongue). Like the other Romance languages
, Catalan is descended from Latin. It is written in the Roman alphabet. It is also the medium of a noteworthy literature.
See W. J. Entwistle, The Spanish Language, Together with Portuguese, Catalan and Basque (2d ed. 1962); J. Gili, Introductory Catalan Grammar (3d ed. 1967).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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