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Georgian

GeorgianBackground and status

The Georgian language (Kartuli) is a Kartvelian language, of the Karto-Zan branch and is also known as South Caucasian. Though this branch of language is mostly spoken in Georgia, there are large groups of Georgian speakers in Russia and the United States, with around five million speakers of this language family across the world.

In Georgia, there are around 4 million speakers of the Georgian language, and for those 4 million people it is their primary language. However, there are around half a million speakers of Georgia who live abroad. There are several regional subgroups of Georgian, with Georgian being the literary language for these subgroups.  Judaeo-Georgian, a sub-language of Georgian itself, is also spoken by around 80,000 people of Jewish descent globally.

There are several Georgian dialects that have formed as a result of this spread of the language, yet around eighteen dialects can be identified within Georgia itself that can be categorised into one of two regional dialects. These dialects are Eastern and Western, with Standard Georgian being primarily of the Eastern dialect, which is the dialect that has spread throughout the Georgian-speaking communities of the world as being the standard for theirs as well.

Georgian uses one of the world's 12 unique alphabets, Mkhedruli—"that of the warrior." It is related to three other languages, all spoken within Georgia and North Eastern Turkey: Megreli, Svan, and Laz.

Growth and usage

The Georgian language stands out as the only language in its family with an ancient literary tradition.  Despite centuries of foreign rule, Georgia has maintained its distinct literary and cultural identity.  As a result, Georgia has a rich folkloric history, with unique traditional music, cinema and theatre. Essentially, the arts world of Georgia is beautifully singular, with many aspects of the arts maintaining a very strong historical vibe.  It is used on all street signs, in all aspects of everyday life, as well as in government, schools and the media.

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