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|Native to||Canada (primarily Quebec and New Brunswick, but present throughout the country); smaller numbers in emigrant communities in New England|
|Native speakers||7 million in Canada (2006)
Smaller numbers in the U.S.
|Official language in||Canada (nation-wide; provincial/territorial governments of Quebec, New Brunswick, Northwest Territories, Yukon, Nunavut)|
|Recognised minority language in|| Canada (Ontario, Nova Scotia, Manitoba, British Columbia, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan, Alberta, Newfoundland and Labrador)
United States (Louisiana, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont)
Canadian French (French: Français canadien) is an umbrella term referring to the varieties of French spoken in Canada. French is the mother tongue of nearly seven million Canadians, a figure constituting roughly 22% of the national population. At the federal level it has co-official status alongside English. Provincially, it tends to have more limited status, except in the case of New Brunswick, which is officially bilingual (with English), and in Quebec, where it is the only official language. Government services are also offered in French at the provincial level in Manitoba and certain areas of Ontario (through the French Language Services Act), and to a variable extent elsewhere. French is also co-official in the three territories. New England French, a variety spoken in parts of New England in the United States, is essentially a variety of Canadian French.
Quebec French is spoken in Quebec. Closely related varieties are spoken by francophone communities in Ontario, Western Canada, Labrador and in the New England region of the United States and differ from Quebec French primarily by their greater conservatism. The term Laurentian French has limited application as a collective label for all these varieties, and Quebec French has also been used for the entire dialect group. The overwhelming majority of francophone Canadians speak this dialect.
Métis French is spoken in Manitoba and Western Canada by the Métis, descendants of First Nations mothers and voyageur fathers during the fur trade. Many Métis spoke Cree in addition to French, and over the years they developed a unique mixed language called Michif by combining Métis French nouns, numerals, articles and adjectives with Cree verbs, demonstratives, postpositions, interrogatives and pronouns. Both the Michif language and the Métis dialect of French are severely endangered.
Newfoundland French is spoken by a small population on the Port-au-Port Peninsula of Newfoundland. It is endangered — both Quebec French and Acadian French are now more widely spoken among Newfoundland francophones than the distinctive peninsular dialect.
Brayon French is spoken in The Beauce of Quebec and Madawaska in New Brunswick (and the American state Maine). Although superficially a phonological descendant of Acadian French, analysis reveals it is morphosyntactically identical to Quebec French. It is believed to have resulted from a localized levelling of contact dialects between Québécois and Acadian settlers.
New England French is spoken in parts of New England in the United States. Essentially a local variant of Canadian French, it is one of three major forms of French that developed in what is now the U.S., the others being Louisiana French and the nearly-extinct Missouri French. It is endangered, though its use is supported by bilingual education programs in place since 1987.
There are two main sub-varieties of Canadian French. Joual is an informal variety of French spoken in working-class neighbourhoods in the province of Quebec. Chiac is a blending of Acadian French syntax and vocabulary with numerous lexical borrowings from English.
The term Canadian French was formerly used to refer specifically to Quebec French and the closely related varieties of Ontario and Western Canada descended from it. This is presumably because Canada and Acadia were distinct parts of New France, and also of British North America, until 1867. However, today the term Canadian French is not usually deemed to exclude Acadian French.
Phylogenetically, Quebec French, Métis French and Brayon French are representatives of koiné French in the Americas whereas Acadian French, Cajun French, and Newfoundland French are derivatives of non-koinesized local dialects in France.
|Look up canadian french in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|