The West Slavs are Slavic peoples speaking West Slavic languages. These are the current Slovaks, Czechs, Kashubians, Poles and Sorbs. The northern or Lechitic group includes, along with Polish, the Kashubian and extinct Polabian and Pomeranian languages. The languages of Upper and Lower Lusatia have features in common with both the Lechitic and the Czecho-Slovak group. Culturally, West Slavs developed along the lines of other Western European nations due to affiliation with the Roman Empire and Western Christianity. Thus, they experienced a cultural split with the other Slavic groups: while the East Slavs and most South Slavs converted to Orthodox Christianity, thus being culturally influenced by the Byzantine Empire, the West Slavs along with the westernmost South Slavs (Slovenes and Croats) converted to Roman Catholicism, thus coming under the cultural influence of the Latin Church.