A member of the Austronesian family of languages, spoken by c. 7 million people as a first language in the Republic of Indonesia. It is also widely spoken by some further 100 million speakers as a lingua franca throughout the Indonesian archipelago; also known as Bahasa Indonesia; the closest linguistic affiliation is with Malay (also known as Bahasa Malaysia).
In 1945 Indonesian was officially adopted as the national language of the Republic of Indonesia, playing an important role in the Indonesian national culture. The language is spoken in a variety of dialects, but the standard form is based on the language of the south Malay Peninsula.
Indonesian is written in the Roman alphabet. Spelling conventions were standardized by the Ministry of Education in 1972.
CLASSIFICATION = Austronesian family, SCRIPT = Roman