Cornish recognised as national minority.
The Liberal Democrat Cabinet minister said the decision meant that for the first time Cornish people would receive the same rights and protections as other minorities in the UK.
It means they are classified under the European Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities the same as the UK's other Celtic people, the Scots, the Welsh and the Irish.
Communities Minister Stephen Williams added: "This is a great day for the people of Cornwall who have long campaigned for the distinctiveness and identity of the Cornish people to be recognised officially. "The Cornish and Welsh are the oldest peoples on this island and as a proud Welshman I look forward to seeing Saint Piran's Flag flying with extra Celtic pride on March 5 next year."
The announcement follows previous commitments, which included formal recognition of the Cornish language. The Government is investing PS120,000 to promote the language.