Friulian is spoken by over 700,000 people in the far northeastern Italian region Friuli-Venezia Giulia, a noticeably conservative area which borders Austria in the north, Slovenia in the east, the Adriatic sea in the south and the Veneto region in the west. The Friulian varieties are sufficiently well-differentiated from adjacent dialects of the Romance group, especially from the Venetian ones. Some varieties of the Venetian type are also spoken within the boundaries of the administrative region Friuli Venezia-Giulia, in the east (including Trieste), in the west and in several areas in the extreme south. A Friulian-Venetian diglossia is widespread in the main towns of the region, being a result of both historical (prestige of Venetian institutions during the centuries of the Serenissima's supremacy) and social circumstances (recent immigration from the neighbouring Veneto). On the other hand, Friulian is also spoken outside Friuli, in the district of Portogruaro (today part of the Veneto region), along the Friulian border (coinciding with the Tagliamento river), as well as outside Italy (especially in Australia, the Americas and South Africa), as a result of emigration. Some groups of Friulian speakers are still found in Rumania (Iliescu 1972).