Emiliano-Romagnolo language

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Native to Italy, San Marino
Region Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy, Marche
Native speakers

In a family context in Emilia-Romagna (4.4 million inhabitants (2010)):

  • Sole or prevalent language of 10.5%
  • Used alongside Italian by 28.3%  (2006)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3 Either:
egl – Emilian
rgn – Romagnol
Linguasphere 51-AAA-ok
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Emiliano-Romagnolo, also known as Emilian-Romagnolo, is a Gallo-Italic language. Its two dialects are Emilian and Romagnol, which are spoken in the Northern Italian regions of Emilia-Romagna, parts of Lombardy and Marche, and San Marino.

Geographic distribution[edit]

Emiliano-Romagnolo is spoken in the Northern Italian regions of Emilia-Romagna and Lombardy (provinces of Pavia, of Mantua and in some municipalities in the province of Cremona), in the Central Italian regions of Tuscany (province of Massa-Carrara) and Marche (province of Pesaro e Urbino) and in the Republic of San Marino. It is also spoken in the lower part of Veneto (in part of the province of Rovigo) in an ancient zone known in Italian as "transpadana ferrarese".


Areas where Emiliano-Romagnolo is spoken

Emiliano-Romagnolo varies considerably across the region, and several dialects exist (e.g. Piacentino has much more in common with Lombard than with Central or Eastern Emiliano and it is hardly intelligible by a speaker from Bologna, the capital of Emilia-Romagna). A major distinction is usually made between Emilian and Romagnolo, seen as separate languages by some linguists. The divergence between the two is thought to have happened in the Early Middle Ages at the time of Byzantine rule. Diphthongisation was more pronounced in Emilian than in Romagnolo. The latter is spoken in the provinces of Forlì-Cesena, Ravenna, Rimini but also in Pesaro e Urbino, in the region of Marche, which formed the historical region of Romagna. The heart-city of Romagnolo is Forlì, because it is the meditullium of Romagna, as Dante Alighieri says.

Distinctive features stereotypically associated with Emiliano-Romagnolo within Italy include voicing of stops between vowels (/t/, /k/, /p/ turn to /d/, /ɡ/, /b/), while voiced stops become fricatives, much as in Iberia (/ð/, /ɣ/, /β/). Also, the voiceless sibilant /s/ is altered to /ʃ/.

Emiliano-Romagnolo can be subdivided into two main subgroups, which in turn are made up of further varieties:


Western Emiliano (Piacentino and Pavese-Vogherese)



Massese (mixed with some Tuscan principles)

Central-Western Emiliano (Parmigiano)

Central Emiliano (Reggiano and Modenese)

Southern Emiliano (Bolognese)

Northeastern Emiliano (Ferrarese and Mantovano)


Northern Romagnolo

Southern Romagnolo

See also[edit]