Indo-European or Indo-Germanic? What’s the difference?

In my last article I told you a Little bit about the Germanic languages but don’t get it mixed up with Indo-Germanic languages. I know it’s confusing but don’t get it mixed up! Learning foreign languages or studying linguistics you will probably get to hear the two terms Indo-European and Indo-Germanic. And you will certainly ask yourself what they mean and which one is right. To be honest I’ve been asking myself exactly the same question at the linguistic classes at university during my study. I can tell you that both forms are right although Indo-European is the more popular term. Both terms describe the cognation of most of all languages spoken in Europe and both terms have a topological meaning. The Indian languages like Hindi, Urdu, Punjabi or Bengali are spoken on the very eastern edge while Icelandic being a Germanic language is spoken on the very western edge. The term Indo-European marks the fact that the languages belonging to this language family are spoken in almost whole Europe and on the Indian peninsula. Of course the Indian culture is a totally different one than our European cultures. Furthermore Hindi and most of all languages spoken in this area have a totally different writing system. However there are many linguistic connections between India and Europe. In my next article I want to explain more about the Indo-European or Indo-Germanic languages. Furthermore I will tell you about some connections between the languages within the Indo-European language family you probably won’t recognize at first view. I want to help you this way and make your language study a little bit easier. So stay tuned!


2 thoughts on “Indo-European or Indo-Germanic? What’s the difference?

  1. I’m so happy I came across this article. I’ve always wondered about the connections between the languages worldwide, so I’m thrilled about your article and the further ones to come. Since I started studying Greek, I realized that the old German and new Greek have some similarities. That’s what triggered my interest. Now I hope to learn much much more. Thank you for sharing your knowledge.


    1. Thank you for your positive comments. Greek is a very interesting language as it doesn’t have any relatives and is an isolated Indo-European language which doesn’t belong to any language group. Similar cases are Albanian and Armenian. However you will notice certain conections between any languages within the Indo-European language family. This makes learning languages even easier and more colorful and funny. 🙂


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