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In HTML, the lang attribute can be used to declare the language of a Web page or a portion of it. The purpose of this attribute is to assist search engines and browsers.

An example of how to use it:

<html lang="en">
</html>

And in XHTML:

<html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" lang="en" xml:lang="en">
</html>

The ISO 639 standard is used for defining language abbreviations. For two letter abbreviations, ISO 639-1 is used; for three letter abbreviations, 639-2 and 639-3 is used.

The list of ISO 639-1 codes is below:

Language Name ISO 639-1 Code
Abkhazian ab
Afar aa
Afrikaans af
Albanian sq
Amharic am
Arabic ar
Armenian hy
Assamese as
Aymara ay
Azerbaijani az
Bashkir ba
Basque eu
Bengali (Bangla) bn
Bhutani dz
Bihari bh
Bislama bi
Breton br
Bulgarian bg
Burmese my
Belarusian be
Cambodian km
Catalan ca
Chinese, Simplified zh
Chinese, Traditional zh
Corsican co
Croatian hr
Czech cs
Danish da
Dutch nl
English en
Esperanto eo
Estonian et
Faeroese fo
Farsi fa
Fiji fj
Finnish fi
French fr
Frisian fy
Galician gl
Gaelic, Scottish gd
Gaelic, Manx gv
Georgian ka
German de
Greek el
Greenlandic kl
Guarani gn
Gujarati gu
Hausa ha
Hebrew he
Hindi hi
Hungarian hu
Icelandic is
Indonesian id
Interlingua ia
Interlingue ie
Inuktitut iu
Inupiak ik
Irish ga
Italian it
Japanese ja
Javanese jv
Kannada kn
Kashmiri ks
Kazakh kk
Kinyarwanda (Ruanda) rw
Kyrgyz ky
Kirundi (Rundi) rn
Korean ko
Kurdish ku
Lao lo
Latin la
Latvian lv
Limburgish li
Lingala ln
Lithuanian lt
Macedonian mk
Malagasy mg
Malay ms
Malayalam ml
Maltese mt
Maori mi
Marathi mr
Moldavian mo
Mongolian mn
Nauru na
Nepali ne
Norwegian no
Occitan oc
Oriya or
Oromo om
Pashto ps
Polish pl
Portuguese pt
Punjabi pa
Quechua qu
Rhaeto-Romance rm
Romanian ro
Russian ru
Samoan sm
Sangro sg
Sanskrit sa
Serbian sr
Serbo-Croatian sh
Sesotho st
Setswana tn
Shona sn
Sindhi sd
Sinhalese si
Siswati ss
Slovak sk
Slovenian sl
Somali so
Spanish es
Sundanese su
Swahili sw
Swedish sv
Tagalog tl
Tajik tg
Tamil ta
Tatar tt
Thai th
Tibetan bo
Tigrinya ti
Tonga to
Tsonga ts
Turkish tr
Turkmen tk
Twi tw
Uighur ug
Ukrainian uk
Urdu ur
Uzbek uz
Vietnamese vi
Volapuk vo
Welsh cy
Wolof wo
Xhosa xh
Yiddish yi
Yoruba yo
Zulu zu

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