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Spread of Turkish Language

Map No.

641

Turkish is spoken as a first language by around 66 million people in at least 34 territories. It has spread widely across Europe, especially in countries that were part of the Ottoman Empire, such as Bulgaria, Cyprus and Greece.

There are around 2 million speakers in Germany, many of whom moved to West Germany in the 1960s and 1970s to fill a labour shortage during the Wirtschaftswunder (German for ‘economic miracle’).

 

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Technical Notes

The map shows the proportion of all people who speak Turkish as a first language that live in that territory in 2005. This map removes the countries where Turkish is dominant. This map therefore only shows 6.7% of all speakers of Turkish. The territory omitted is Turkey.

Definition
The maps in the 2005 language data series are made from data on the number of people speaking a language as their first-language, that is the language they would use at home.

Data sources
This map uses data several sources, the main one being Ethnologue (15th Edition, 2005). Estimating the number of speakers of a language is fraught with difficulty on several levels (last accessed January 2009). We aim to map as complete data as possible and therefore estimate data for missing values. The language numbers we use and publish are rough estimates, and should not be taken as definitive. In some cases, missing data for very small territories is not used in the cartogram and that area is therefore omitted in the map.

All modifications to the original data source are noted in our data sheets. Data for this map will soon be available as a download.

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