THE LANGUAGE FRENCH external image images?q=tbn:ANd9GcThdVkR-6fgl_1mFjBCiLIO34OkzqCm6otAzozV5AJTK7Il8HJ_

French is used as the official language of 22 countries and is the co-official language of several others, including Belgium, Canada, Haiti, Madagascar, and Switzerland. It is spoken as a first language by 51 million people in France and Corsica. The grammar of the French language spoken and written today is in its essentials unchanged from the late 17th century, when official efforts to standardize, stabilize, and clarify French grammatical usage were institutionalized in the French Academy. Approximately 64, 858, 000 million people speak French as their first or second language. The French speaking countries in the world are given below in the map.external image image%205.gif SOURCES: Oya Zaimoglu 892-The French Language