Library of Congress >> Standards

ISO639-5

Codes for the Representation of Names of Languages
Part 5: Alpha-3 code for language families and groups

Table of Contents

Foreword
Introduction
Normative Text
ISO 639-5 Language identifiers arranged alphabetically by:

Bibliography
Status of this document


Foreword

ISO (the International Organization for Standardization) is a worldwide federation of national standards bodies (ISO member bodies). The work of preparing International Standards is normally carried out through ISO technical committees. Each member body interested in a subject for which a technical committee has been established has the right to be represented on that committee. International organizations, governmental and non-governmental, in liaison with ISO, also take part in the work. ISO collaborates closely with the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) on all matters of electrotechnical standardization.

International Standards are drafted in accordance with the rules given in the ISO/IEC Directives, Part 2.

The main task of technical committees is to prepare International Standards. Draft International Standards adopted by the technical committees are circulated to the member bodies for voting. Publication as an International Standard requires approval by at least 75 % of the member bodies casting a vote.

Attention is drawn to the possibility that some of the elements of this document may be the subject of patent rights. ISO shall not be held responsible for identifying any or all such patent rights.

ISO 639‑5 was prepared by Technical Committee ISO/TC 37, Terminology and other language and content resources, Subcommittee SC 2, Terminographical and lexicographical working methods.

ISO 639 consists of the following parts, under the general title Codes for the representation of names of languages:

  • Part 1: Alpha-2 code
  • Part 2: Alpha-3 code
  • Part 3: Alpha-3 code for comprehensive coverage of languages
  • Part 4: Implementation guidelines and general principles for language coding
  • Part 5: Alpha-3 code for language families and groups
  • Part 6: Alpha-4 code for comprehensive coverage of language variants

Introduction

ISO 639 provides codes for the identification of languages, language variants, and language groups. The identifiers may be used to denote the language used in a text, the language of terms or words in a dictionary or terminological database, the language used in a spoken presentation, language capabilities of software, etc.

ISO 639-2 includes some language groups and language families, but by no means a complete list. The purpose of the code elements for language groups and language families in ISO 639-2 is to provide a means to register the language of a document even when the individual language in question is not included in the code table. This part of ISO 639 supplements the coding of language groups and language families in ISO 639-2. However, the depth and detail of coding in this part of ISO 639 is intended to support the overall language coding of the ISO 639 series of International Standards rather than provide a scientific classification of the languages of the world.

The list of language families and groups in this part of ISO 639 will be extended and developed continuously through a defined maintenance process.


Disclaimer

Bibliography

  1. ISO 639-1:2002, Codes for the representation of names of languages — Part 1: Alpha-2 code
  2. ISO 639-3:2007, Codes for the representation of names of languages — Part 3: Alpha-3 code for comprehensive coverage of languages
  3. ISO 639-4: Codes for the representation of names of languages — Part 4: Implementation guidelines and general principles for language coding (to be published)
  4. ISO 639-1 and ISO 639-2 web site: //www.loc.gov/standards/iso639-2/
  5. ISO 639-3 web site: http://www.sil.org/iso639-3/
  6. Dalby, D. The Linguasphere Register of the World's Languages and Speech Communities. Linguasphere Press, Hebron, Wales. First edition, 1999/2000
  7. Ethnologue. Languages of the World. SIL International, Dallas, Texas, USA. Fifteenth edition, 2005. The content is also accessible at http://www.ethnologue.com/
  8. International Encyclopedia of Linguistics. Edited by William Frawley. Oxford University Press, 2003, 4 volumes
  9. Multitree: "A digital library of language relationships." 2014. Bloomington, IN: Department of Linguistics. The LINGUIST List, Indiana University. http://multitree.org/

    Status of this document

    The identifiers listed in this document are continuously updated. Changes made since the initial publication of ISO 639-5: 2008 are listed in the ISO 639-5 Change Notice, which represents decisions made by the ISO 639 Joint Advisory Committee.



 



Library of Congress >> Standards

Contact Us
July 15, 2020