Basque is a language spoken by approximately 1 million people the Basque country in France and Spain. It is unusual in being a language isolate not related to the surrounding Indo-European languages. In Basque, the subject of an intransitive verb and the object of a transitive one are in the absolutive case, while the subject of a transitive verb is marked with the ergative case. That is, Basque is an ergative language. In Basque, the language is called euskara (although dialect spellings exist, such as euskera and eskuara, euskara is the preferred variant).
The Royal Academy of the Basque Language, Euskaltzaindia, was founded in 1919 in order to research the language and to safeguard it. This Academy formulates rules for the normalisation of the language, thus promoting an academic standard (called euskara batua, wich means unified Basque).