Danish Sign Language Family
West Scandinavian Sign
Deaf populations
Denmark, Norway, Iceland, Madagascar
Linguistic classificationFrench Sign
  • Danish Sign Language Family
Glottologwest2993  (West Scandinavian Sign)

The Danish Sign Language family comprises three languages: Danish Sign Language, Norwegian Sign Language (including Malagasy Sign Language) and Icelandic Sign Language. It itself is a sub-language family within the larger French Sign Language family.[1]

Ethnologue reports that Danish Sign Language is largely mutually intelligible with Swedish Sign, despite having been assigned different families by Wittmann (1991).

Danish Sign Language family tree
French Sign
(c. 1760–present)
local/home sign
Danish Sign
(c. 1800–present)
Faroese Sign
(c. 1960–present)
Greenlandic Sign
(c. 1950–present)
Icelandic Sign
(c. 1910–present)
Norwegian Sign
(c. 1820–present)
Malagasy Sign
(c. 1950–present)


  1. ^ Bergman, Brita; Engberg-Pedersen, Elisabeth (2010). "Transmission of sign languages in the Nordic countries". In Brentari, Diane (ed.). Sign Languages. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 74–94. doi:10.1017/CBO9780511712203. ISBN 978-0521883702.