Piedmontese Language
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Piedmontese Language
Piedmontese
piemontèis
Native toItaly
RegionNorthwest Italy:
Piedmont
Liguria
Lombardy
Aosta Valley
Native speakers
700,000 (2012)[1]
Official status
Recognised minority
language in
Language codes
pms
Glottologpiem1238
ELPPiemontese[2]
Linguasphere51-AAA-of
Piemontèis.jpg
This article contains IPA phonetic symbols. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Unicode characters. For an introductory guide on IPA symbols, see Help:IPA.

Piedmontese (autonym: piemontèis [pjem't?jz] or lenga piemontèisa, in Italian: piemontese) is a language spoken by some 700,000 people mostly in Piedmont, northwestern region of Italy. Like most of the languages in Italy it is often considered a "dialect".[3] It is linguistically included in the Gallo-Italic languages group of Northern Italy (with Lombard, Emilian, Ligurian and Romagnolo), which would make it part of the wider western group of Romance languages, which also includes French, Occitan, and Catalan. It is spoken in the core of Piedmont, in northwestern Liguria, near Savona and in Lombardy (some municipalities in the westernmost part of Lomellina near Pavia).

It has some support from the Piedmont regional government, but is considered a dialect rather than a separate language by the Italian central government.[3]

Due to the italian immigration piedmontese has spread in the argentianian pampas, where many immigrants from Piedmont settled.

History

The first documents in the Piedmontese language were written in the 12th century, the sermones subalpini, when it was extremely close to Occitan. Literary Piedmontese developed in the 17th and 18th centuries, but it did not gain literary esteem comparable to that of French or Italian, other languages used in Piedmont. Nevertheless, literature in Piedmontese has never ceased to be produced: it includes poetry, theatre pieces, novels, and scientific work.[4]

Current status

In 2004, Piedmontese was recognised as Piedmont's regional language by the regional parliament,[5][6][7] although the Italian government has not yet recognised it as such. In theory, it is now supposed to be taught to children in school,[8] but this is happening only to a limited extent.

The last decade has seen the publication of learning materials for schoolchildren, as well as general-public magazines. Courses for people already outside the education system have also been developed. In spite of these advances, the current state of Piedmontese is quite grave, as over the last 150 years the number of people with a written active knowledge of the language has shrunk to about 2% of native speakers, according to a recent survey.[9] On the other hand, the same survey showed Piedmontese is still spoken by over half the population, alongside Italian. Authoritative sources confirm this result, putting the figure between 2 million (Assimil,[10] IRES Piemonte[11] and 3 million speakers (Ethnologue[12]) out of a population of 4.2 million people. Efforts to make it one of the official languages of the Turin 2006 Winter Olympics were unsuccessful.

Regional variants

Piedmontese is divide in tree major grups

  • Western wich include the dialects of Turin and Cuneo.
  • Eastern which in turn is divide into south-eastern (Astigiano, Roero, Monregalese, High Montferrat, Langarolo, Alessandrino) and north-eastern (Low Montferrat, Biellese, Vercellese, Valsesiano).
  • Canevese, spoken in the Canavese region in north-western Piedmont.

Eastern and western group

Eastern piedmontese is much phonological evolved of his western counterpart.

The word that in the west end with jt,jd or t in the east end with [d?] e/o [t?] for example the westerns [lajt], [tyjt], and [v?j] ( milk, all and old) in the east are [l?t?], [tyt?] and [v?d?].

Eastern piedmontese has [i] as allophone of [e] at the end of word, both at the end of infinitive time of the verb, like in to read and to be (western [leze], [ese] vs. eastern [lezi], [esi]) and at words feminine plural gender, altought this devolpment is so early that is present in large areas of western Piedmont including Turin for the infinitive time.

A morphological variation that sharply divides east and west is the indicative imperfect conjugation of irregular verbs, in the east is present the suffix ava/iva, while in the west is asìa/isìa.

And different coniugation of the present simple of the irregular verbs: dé, andé, sté (to give, to go, to stay).

english eastern western
to give to go to stay to give to go to stay
i dagh vagh stagh don von ston
you da va sta das vas stas
he/she/it da va sta da va sta
we doma andoma stoma doma andoma stoma
you andè stè deve andeve steve
they dan van stan dan van stan

Phonology

Consonants

The /w/ sound occurs as the sound of /v/ in word-final position. When occurring intervocalically between an a [a] or an o [u], /v/ is pronounced as a non-syllabic [u?].[13][14]

Vowels

Allophones of /a/ are [?, ?] in stressed syllables.

Alphabet

Piedmontese is written with a modified Latin alphabet. The letters, along with their IPA equivalent, are shown in the table below.

Letter IPA value Letter IPA value Letter IPA value
A a , H h ? P p
B b I i or (semivocalic) Q q [i]
C c or [ii] J j R r ~
D d L l S s , [iii]
E e or [iv] M m T t
Ë ë N n or [v] U u , or (semivocalic) ,
F f O o , /u/ or (semivocalic), V v , , or [vi]
G g or [ii] Ò ò Z z
  1. ^ Always before u.
  2. ^ a b Before i, e or ë, c and g represent /t?/ and /d?/, respectively.
  3. ^ s is voiced [z] between vowels, at the end of words, immediately before nasal/voiced consonants.
  4. ^ e is /e/ or /?/ in open syllables and just /e/ in closed.
  5. ^ Before consonants and at the end of words, n represents the velar nasal /?/.
  6. ^ v is generally /v/, /?/ before dental consonants and between vowels, /w/ ([f] by some speakers) at the end of words.

Certain digraphs are used to regularly represent specific sounds as shown below.

Digraph IPA value Digraph IPA value Digraph IPA value
gg gh cc
gli [a] ss gn
sc /sk/, /st?/ sc, scc /st?/ eu
sg, sgg /zd?/
  1. ^ Represents in some Italian loanwords.

All other combinations of letters are pronounced as written. Grave accent marks stress (except for o which is marked by an acute to distinguish it from ò) and breaks diphthongs, so ua and are /wa/, but ùa is pronounced separately, /'ya/.

Numbers

number piedmontese number piedmontese number piemontese number piedmontese
1 un 11 ondes 30 tranta 200 dosent
2 doi (m), doe (f) 12 dodes 40 quaranta 300 tersent
3 trei 13 terdes 50 sinquanta 400 quatsent
4 quatr 14 quatordes 60 sessanta 500 sinchsent
5 sinch 15 quindes 70 stanta 600 sessent
6 ses 16 sedes 80 otanta 700 setsent
7 set 17 disset 90 novanta 800 eutsent
8 eut 18 diseut 100 sent 900 neuvsent
9 neuv 19 disneuv 101 sent e un 1000 mila
10 des 20 vint 110 sentdes

Characteristics

Some of the characteristics of the Piedmontese language are:

  1. The presence of clitic so-called verbal pronouns for subjects, which give a Piedmontese verbal complex the following form: (subject) + verbal pronoun + verb, as in (mi) i von 'I go'. Verbal pronouns are absent only in the imperative form.
  2. The bound form of verbal pronouns, which can be connected to dative and locative particles (a-i é 'there is', i-j diso 'I say to him').
  3. The interrogative form, which adds an enclitic interrogative particle at the end of the verbal form (Veus-to...? 'Do you want to...?'])
  4. The absence of ordinal numerals higher than 'sixth', so that 'seventh' is col che a fà set 'the one which makes seven'.
  5. The existence of three affirmative interjections (that is, three ways to say yes): si, sè (from Latin sic est, as in Italian); é (from Latin est, as in Portuguese); òj (from Latin hoc est, as in Occitan, or maybe hoc illud, as in Franco-Provençal, French and Old Catalan and Occitan).
  6. The absence of the voiceless postalveolar fricative /?/ (like the sh in English sheep), for which an alveolar S sound (as in English sun) is usually substituted.
  7. The existence of an S-C combination pronounced [st?].
  8. The existence of a velar nasal [?] (like the ng in English going), which usually precedes a vowel, as in lun-a 'moon'.
  9. The existence of the third Piedmontese vowel Ë, which is very short (close to the vowel in English sir).
  10. The absence of the phonological contrast that exists in Italian between short (single) and long (double) consonants, for example, Italian fata 'fairy' and fatta 'done (F)'.
  11. The existence of a prosthetic Ë sound when consonantal clusters arise that are not permitted by the phonological system. So 'seven stars' is pronounced set ëstèile (cf. stèile 'stars').

Piedmontese has a number of varieties that may vary from its basic koiné to quite a large extent. Variation includes not only departures from the literary grammar, but also a wide variety in dictionary entries, as different regions maintain words of Frankish or Lombard origin, as well as differences in native Romance terminology. Words imported from various languages are also present, while more recent imports tend to come from France and from Italian.

A variety of Piedmontese was Judeo-Piedmontese, a dialect spoken by the Piedmontese Jews until the Second World War.

Lexical comparison

Lexical comparison with other Romance languages and English:

Gallo-italic and Venetian Occitano-romance Gallo-romance Italo-dalmatian Ibero-romance Balkan-romance
English Piedmontese Ligurian Emilian Venetian Occitan Catalan Arpitan French Sicilian Italian Spanish Portuguese Romanian
chair cadrega carêga scrâna carega cadièra cadira cheyére chaise sìeggia sedia silla cadeira scaun, catedr?
to take pijé/ciapé pigiâ/ciapà ciapèr ciapàr prene prendre prendre/acrapar prendre pigghiàri prendere, pigliare coger, tomar, pillar pegar, tomar a lua
to go/come out surtì/seurte sciortì sortìr isìr/sortir sortir sortir/eixir sortir/salyir sortir nèsciri uscire salir sair a ie?i
to fall droché/tombé càzze crodèr cajàr caire/tombar caure chèdre tomber càriri cadere, cascare caer, tumbar cair, tombar c?dere
home ca/meison ca ca ca casa/meison ca/casa mêson/cà maison casa casa casa casa cas?
arm brass brasso brâs braç braç braç brès bras vrazzu braccio brazo braço bra?
number nùmer nùmero nómmer nùmaro nòmbre nombre nombro nombre nùmmuru numero número número num?r
name nòm nòme nòm nòme nom nom nom nom nomu nome nombre nome nume
apple pom méia/póma pàm pómo poma poma poma pomme muma/mela mela manzana maçã m?r
to work travajér travagiâ lavorè travajàr trabahlar treballar travalyér travailler travagghiari lavorare trabajar trabalhar a lucra
bat (animal) ratavolòira ràttopenûgo papastrèl signàpola ratapenada ratpenat rata volage chauve-souris taddarita pipistrello murciélago morcego liliac
school scòla schêua scòla scòla escòla escola ècuola école scola scuola escuela escola ?coal?
wood (land) bòsch bòsco bòsch bósco bosc bosc bouesc bois voscu bosco bosque bosque p?dure
Mr monsù sciô sior siór sénher senyor monsior monsieur gnuri signore señor senhor, seu domn
Mrs madama sciâ siora sióra sénhera senyora madama madame gnura signora señora senhora, dona doamn?
summer istà istà istê istà estiu estiu étif été astati estate verano, estío verão, estio var?
today ancheuj ancheu inc? incò uèi/ancuei avui/hui enqu'houè aujourd'hui ùoggi oggi hoy hoje azi
tomorrow dman domân dmân domàn deman demà deman demain rumani domani mañana amanhã mâine
yesterday jer vêi iêr gèri gèr/ier ahir hièr hier aìeri ieri ayer ontem ieri
Monday lùnes lunesdì munedé luni diluns dilluns delon lundi lunidìa lunedì lunes segunda-feira luni
Tuesday màrtes mâtesdì martedé marti dimars dimarts demârs mardi màrtiri martedì martes terça-feira mar?i
Wednesday mèrcol mâcordì mercordé mercòre dimecrès dimecres demécro mercredi mèrcuri mercoledì miércoles quarta-feira miercuri
Thursday giòbia zéuggia giovedé zioba dijòus dijous dejo jeudi iòviri giovedì jueves quinta-feira joi
Friday vënner venardì venerdé vénere divendres divendres devendro vendredi viènniri venerdì viernes sexta-feira vineri
Saturday saba sabbò sâbet sabo dissabte dissabte dessandro samedi sabbatu sabato sábado sábado sâmb?t?
Sunday dumìnica dumenega dumenica doménega dimenge diumenge demenge dimanche rumìnica domenica domingo domingo duminic?

References

  1. ^ Piedmontese on Ethnologue (19th ed., 2016)
  2. ^ Endangered Languages Project data for Piemontese.
  3. ^ a b La Stampa. "Per la Consulta il piemontese non è una lingua". Archived from the original on March 1, 2012. Retrieved 2010.
  4. ^ University-level course material - physics and calculus (as consulted on 30 July 2010)
  5. ^ Motion 1118 in the Piedmontese Regional Parliament, Approvazione da parte del Senato del Disegno di Legge che tutela le minoranze linguistiche sul territorio nazionale - Approfondimenti, approved unanimously on 15 December 1999
  6. ^ Text of motion 1118 in the Piedmontese Regional Parliament, Consiglio Regionale del Piemonte, Ordine del Giorno 1118
  7. ^ Piemontèis d'amblé - Avviamento Modulare alla conoscenza della Lingua piemontese; R. Capello, C. Comòli, M.M. Sánchez Martínez, R.J.M. Nové; Regione Piemonte/Gioventura Piemontèisa; Turin, 2001]
  8. ^ Details on how schools can implement Piedmontese courses subsidized by the regional government by "Arbut", one organisation offering such courses Arbut - Ël piemontèis a scòla
  9. ^ Knowledge and Usage of the Piedmontese Language in Turin and its Province Archived 2006-02-07 at the Wayback Machine, carried out by Euromarket, a Turin-based market research company on behalf of the Riformisti per l'Ulivo party in the Piedmontese Regional Parliament in 2003 (in Italian).
  10. ^ F. Rubat Borel, M. Tosco, V. Bertolino. Il Piemontese in Tasca, a Piedmontese basic language course and conversation guide, published by Assimil Italia (the Italian branch of Assimil, the leading French producer of language courses) in 2006. ISBN 88-86968-54-X. assimil.it
  11. ^ E. Allasino, C. Ferrer, E. Scamuzzi, T. Telmon Le Lingue del Piemonte, research published in October 2007 by Istituto di Ricerche Economiche e Sociali, a public economic and social research organisation.
  12. ^ Lewis, M. Paul (ed.), 2009. Ethnologue: Languages of the World, Sixteenth edition. Dallas, Tex.: SIL International ISO 639-3, pms (Piemontese) Retrieved 13 June 2012
  13. ^ Brero, Camillo; Bertodatti, Remo (2000). Grammatica della lingua piemontese. Torino: Ed.
  14. ^ Parry, Mair (1997). Piedmont. The dialects of Italy: London: Routledge. pp. 237-244.

Further reading

External links


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