Romanian (dated Rumanian or Roumanian; autonym: limba română [ˈlimba roˈmɨnə], "the Romanian language", or românește, lit. "in Romanian") is a Balkan Romance language spoken by approximately 24–26 million people as a native language, primarily in Romania and Moldova, and by another 4 million people as a second language. According to another estimate, there are about 34 million people worldwide who can speak Romanian, out of which 30 million speak it as a native language. It is an official and national language of both Romania and Moldova and is one of the official languages of the European Union.
Romanian is a part of the Eastern Romance sub-branch of Romance languages, a linguistic group that evolved from several dialects of Vulgar Latin, which was separated from the Western Romance during the 5th–8th centuries. To distinguish it within that group in comparative linguistics it is called Daco-Romanian as opposed to its closest relatives, Aromanian, Megleno-Romanian and Istro-Romanian. Romanian is also known as Moldovan in Moldova, although the Constitutional Court of Moldova ruled in 2013 that "the official language of the republic is Romanian".
Numerous immigrant Romanian speakers are also scattered across many other regions and countries worldwide, with large populations in Italy, Spain, Germany, Russia, Canada, and the United States.