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   Information Center Luxembourg
Luxembourg General Information
 
History of Luxembourg
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People, Language & Religion
 
 
 

People

The indigenous inhabitants of Luxembourg consider themselves a distinct nationality, with a specific ethnic character. A strong indication of that character is the national motto, "Mir woelle bleiwe wat mir sin" ("We want to remain what we are"), for despite a history of long foreign domination, Luxembourgers have retained their individuality as a nation. There are also native-born residents of Celtic, French, Belgian, or German ancestry, as well as a substantial immigrant population of Portuguese, Italian, and other Europeans (guest and worker residents).

Language

Luxembourgers speak Luxembourgian, or Letzeburgesch, the original dialect of the country, as well as French and German. All three are official languages. Letzeburgesch is a Germanic dialect related to the Moselle Frankish language that was once spoken in western Germany. It rarely appears in written form. Letzeburgesch, French, and German are all languages of instruction in primary schools, while French is the most common language of instruction in secondary schools. Government publications are generally in French. English is also spoken.

Religion

There is complete religious freedom within the country and, by law, the government may not collect statistics on religious affiliation. However, Catholic priests, Protestant pastors and Jewish rabbis are paid by the state. The country is historically Roman Catholic and it is estimated that over 90% of the population are nominally members of this church. The largest Protestant denominations are Lutheran and Calvinist. About 6,000 people are Muslim, about 1,500 are Greek Orthodox and about 1,000 are Jewish. There are also small communities of the Baha'is, Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses and Members of the Universal Church. It is believed that the number of atheists is small, but growing.

 
 



 



 


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