German is a West Germanic language, that is intertwined with both English and Dutch. It is one of the major languages in the world, and is the dominant mother tongue within the EU. German, as a native language, is spoken by about 105 million worldwide, and approximately 80 million as an acquired language. Outside of Germany and Russia, the largest concentration of German speaking peoples is found within the U.S. (The Dakotas), Canada, Brazil, and Argentina. The language itself dates back to 750 AD, where its first dialects were spoken locally. It was later put into fruition during the 18th century, as a standard language for verbal and literary communication. The language is associated with historic writings, classical music, and a variety of scientific publications. It was spoken sporadically in German East Africa, and other centers during European colonication. It is, however, spoken as an official language in Switzerland, Austria, Liechtenstein, parts of Belgium (Flemish/Flanders Region), and Luxembourg.
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