An Introduction to The Portuguese Language
Portuguese is a Romance language (originates from Latin similar to Spanish, French, Romanian and Italian) and it is the sole official language of Portugal, Angola, Mozambique, Guinea-Bissau, Cape Verde, São Tomé and Príncipe, and Brazil, while having co-official language status in East Timor, Equatorial Guinea, and Macau.
A Portuguese-speaking person or nation is referred to as Lusophone (lusófono). As the result of expansion during colonial times, a cultural presence of Portuguese and Portuguese creole speakers are also found around the world.
When the Romans arrived in the Iberian Peninsula 216 BC, they brought the Latin language with them. The language was spread by Roman soldiers, settlers, and merchants, who built Roman cities mostly near the settlements of previous Celtic civilisations which were established long before the Roman arrivals.
After the Roman Empire collapsed, Iberia was conquered by Germanic peoples which led to some words entering the Portuguese lexicon. Although after the Moorish invasion the administrative powers spoke Arabic, the general populace continued to speak a form of Romance language.
Portuguese evolved from the medieval language, known today by linguists as Galician-Portuguese, Old Portuguese or Old Galician, of the northwestern medieval Kingdom of Galicia and County of Portugal.
The majority of information on this page has been taken from Wikipedia, please read their article for full details of the development of the Portuguese language.
Image by Saftorangen on Wikipedia.