I'd love to find a machine-readable list of language families that use the three-letter ISO language codes. It would be like:

Germanic: eng, enm, deu, dut, ... Romance: fra, ita, spa, ...

Does such a thing exist?

  • Curious (and it may help answer): what is the use case? Mar 26, 2016 at 20:17
  • 1
    I'm rebuilding my app called The Macro-Etymological Analyzer (jonreeve.com/etym) in Python, and wanted to group languages by family programmatically.
    – Jonathan
    Mar 27, 2016 at 18:55
  • Did you find something like this? Aug 6, 2017 at 14:28

2 Answers 2


Since there isn't a crisp distinction between "language family" and other levels of relatedness, there cannot be one, in principle. However, Glottolog provides relatedness information for all languages whereby one can select the subset of languages that are under sub-group X, be it "Western Romance", "Romance" or "Indo-European". They subsume all such concepts under the term "languoid". You can read about it here. They have everything posted, and you would want glottolog-languoid.csv.zip. The conceptual key is to find the specific group (higher-level "languoid") that you're interested in, and then select the languages that trace back to that particular level. Of course, if you disagree with their subgroupings, well, that's pretty common.


The ISO codes were directly taken from The Ethnologue. This work also contains a language classification, e.g.,

Ayta, Ambala
A language of the Philippines

Classification Austronesian, Malayo-Polynesian, Philippine, Central Luzon, Sambalic

The information should be automatically extractable. Note that "The Ethnologue" presents one point of view concerning the classification, other authors might disagree with them.

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