Afrikaans is a West Germanic language and is spoken in South Africa by approximately 6 million people of all races. It shows many characteristics of a Creole language and is considered to have developed from contact between the various languages spoken at the Cape of Good Hope in the 17th century: Dutch dialects, French, Malayo-Portuguese, and indigenous Khoikhoi languages. Though closely related, Dutch and Afrikaans are by no means “the same” and may perhaps be considered as similar (or dissimilar) as Spanish and French. Needless to say, modern linguists take much delight in studying the similarities and differences between Dutch and Afrikaans and even within Dutch itself. Important Afrikaans authors and poets include Mark Behr, André P. Brink, Breyten Breytenbach, Elisabeth Eybers, Ingrid Jonker, Elsa Joubert, Antjie Krog Etienne Leroux, W.E.G. Louw, N. P. Van Wyk Louw, D. J. Opperman, Adam Small, and Etienne Van Heerden.