Common Latin, also known as Vulgar Latin, is a collection of dialects spoken throughout the Roman Empire. These dialects were spoken by the common people and soldiers, hence "common". ("Vulgar" in this context is a synonym for "common".) The upper-class Latin spoken by the church and the government was a sociolect, but it was intelligible to speakers of Common Latin. Common Latin changed over time due to outside influences such as proto-German, and eventually developed into the Romance languages, which include French and Spanish.