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Gaelic is spoken mainly in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland. It is a Celtic language closely related to Irish and Manx, and more distantly related to Welsh, Breton and Cornish.
The Gaelic language was introduced into Scotland by settlers from Ireland in the 4th and 5th centuries AD. These settlers were known to the Romans as Scotti and it is a measure of their influence on the development of the country that it came to be known as Scotland. By the end of the 10th century AD, the Gaelic language had penetrated most areas of the country and was used as the language of the Crown and Government. Anglicizing influences from the south began to erode this situation in the 12th century and there began a long period of attrition of the language and culture.
Scottish Gaelic is covered under Part III of the Charter.
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According to the census from 2011, 2500 children will be learning Gaelic in 2012 and 2013, opposed to 24 children in 1985.2). In 2007 MacCaluim (2007) estimated that about 700 learners obtained fluency.
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