Javanese is a Sundic language of the Western Malayo-Polynesian branch of the Austronesian language family. Although it is related to Indonesian, it is most closely related to Malay, Sundanese, Madurese, and Balinese.Along with Sundanese, Javanese is the principal native language of Java. Javanese language is
spoken by over 75 million people worldwide.
Three principal regional dialects are recognized: Western, Central, and Eastern Javanese. Each dialect admits of a fair number of sub-dialects. The primary dimension along which these dialects vary is pronunciation.
Nine sub-dialects of Western Javanese are recognized: North Banten, Krawang, Indramayu (Dermayon), Cirebon (Basa Cerbon), Brebes/Tegal, Banyumasan, Jawa Serang, North Coast, and Ciamis. These dialects are spoken in the north coast region of the West Java province and have been considerably influenced by Sundanese. As such the Western Javanese lexicon contains many archaic Sundanese words.
The Central Javanese dialect, which is comprised of the Surakarta, Yogyakarta, Muria, and Semarangan sub-dialects is considered the most refined form of Javanese, and as such, standard Javanese is based on this dialect. In particular, standard Javanese is based on the Surakarta dialect, and to a lesser extent, the Yogyakarta variety of Javanese.
Eastern Javanese is spoken across the majority of the East Java province, from the eastern banks of Kali Brantas in Kertosono to Banyuwangi. Unlike the other dialects, Eastern Javanese is considerably influenced by Madurese. This influence is most obvious in the Madurese borrowings in the vocabulary. The Banyuwangi sub-dialect spoken in the easternmost region of Java is perhaps the most deviant of the Javanese dialects.
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