Occitan language

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Occitan
occitan; lenga d'òc
Native to France; Spain; Italy; Monaco
Native speakers
estimates range from 100,000 to 800,000  (2007–2012)[1][2]
Early forms
Old Occitan
  • Occitan
Dialects
Official status
Official language in
 Catalonia,  Spain
Recognised minority
language in
 France
 Italy[3] (Law number 482 of 15 December 1999) [4]
Regulated by Conselh de la Lenga Occitana;[5] Congrès Permanent de la Lenga Occitana[6]
Language codes
ISO 639-1 oc
ISO 639-2 oci
ISO 639-3 oci
Glottolog occi1239[7]
Linguasphere 51-AAA-g & 51-AAA-f
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This article contains IPA phonetic symbols. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Unicode characters.

Occitan (English pronunciation: /ˈɒksɨtən, -tæn, -tɑːn/;[8][9] Occitan: [utsiˈta];[10] French: [ɔksitɑ̃]), also known as lenga d'òc (Occitan: [ˈleŋɡɔ ˈðɔ(k)] ( ); French: langue d'oc) by its native speakers, is a Romance language. It is spoken in southern France, Italy's Occitan Valleys, Monaco, and Spain's Val d'Aran; collectively, these regions are sometimes referred to unofficially as Occitania. Occitan is also spoken in the linguistic enclave of Guardia Piemontese (Calabria, Italy). However, there are strong polemics about the unity of the language, as some think that Occitan is a macrolanguage.

Occitan is an official language in Catalonia, where a subdialect of Gascon known as Aranese is spoken.[11] Occitan's closest relative is Catalan.[12] Since September 2010, the Parliament of Catalonia has considered Aranese Occitan to be the officially preferred language for use in the Val d'Aran.

Across history, the terms Limousin (Lemosin), Languedocien (Lengadocian), Gascon, and later Provençal (Provençal, Provençau or Prouvençau) have been used as synonyms for the whole of Occitan; nowadays, "Provençal" is understood mainly as the Occitan dialect spoken in Provence.[13]

Unlike other Romance languages such as French or Spanish, there is no single written standard language called "Occitan", and Occitan has no official status in France, home to most of Occitania. Instead, there are competing norms for writing Occitan, some of which attempt to be pan-dialectal while others are based on particular dialects (e.g. Provençal in southeast France, or Gascon in the Val d'Aran of Spain, where it is known as Aranese). These efforts are hindered by the rapidly declining usage of Occitan as a spoken language in much of southern France, as well as by the significant differences in phonology and vocabulary between different Occitan dialects. In particular, the northern and easternmost dialects have more features in common with the Gallo-Italic and Oïl languages (e.g. nasal vowels; loss of final consonants; initial cha/ja- instead of ca/ga-; uvular ‹r›; the front-rounded sound /ø/ instead of a diphthong, /w/ instead of /l/ before a consonant), while the southernmost dialects have more features in common with the Ibero-Romance languages (e.g. betacism; voiced fricatives between vowels in place voiced stops; -ch- in place of -it-), and Gascon has a number of unusual features not seen in other dialects (e.g. /h/ in place of /f/; loss of /n/ between vowels; intervocalic -r- and final -t/ch in place of medieval -ll-). There are also significant lexical differences, where again the northern dialects have words cognate with French, and the southern dialects have Catalan and Spanish cognates (maison/casa "house", testa/cap "head", petit/pichon "small", achaptar/crompar "to buy", entendre/ausir "to hear", se taire/se calar "to be quiet", tombar/caire "to fall", p(l)us/mai "more", totjorn/sempre "always", etc.). Nonetheless, there is a significant amount of mutual intelligibility.

The long-term survival of Occitan is in grave doubt. According to the UNESCO Red Book of Endangered Languages,[14] four of the six major dialects of Occitan (Provençal, Auvergnat, Limousin and Languedocien) are considered severely endangered, while the remaining two (Gascon and Vivaro-Alpine) are considered definitely endangered.

Name[edit]

History of the modern term[edit]

Main cities of Occitan, written in the Occitan language

The name Occitan comes from lenga d'òc ("language of òc"), òc being the Occitan word for yes. While the term would have been in use orally for some time after the decline of Latin, as far as historical records show the Italian medieval poet Dante was the first to have recorded the term lingua d'oc in writing. In his De vulgari eloquentia, he wrote in Latin, "nam alii oc, alii si, alii vero dicunt oil" ("for some say òc, others , yet others oïl"), thereby highlighting three major Romance literary languages that were well known in Italy, based on each language's word for "yes", the òc language (Occitan), the oïl language (French), and the sì language (Italian). This was not, of course, the only defining characteristic of each group.

The word òc came from Vulgar Latin hoc ("this"), while oïl originated from Latin hoc illud ("this [is] it"). Old Catalan, and now the Catalan of Northern Catalonia (French: Catalunya Nord) also have hoc (òc). Other Romance languages derive their word for "yes" from the Latin sic, "thus [it is], [it was done], etc.", such as Spanish , Eastern Lombard , Italian , or Portuguese sim. In Modern Catalan, as in modern Spanish, is usually used as a response, although the language retains the word oi, akin to òc, which is sometimes used at the end of yes–no questions, and also in higher register as a positive response.[15] French uses si in response to questions where a negative answer is expected: e.g., "Vous n'avez pas de frères?" "Si, j'en ai sept." ("You have no brothers?" "Yes [I do], I have seven.").

The name "Occitan" is sometimes considered a neologism;[16] however, it was attested around 1300 as "occitanus", a crossing of oc and aquitanus (Aquitanian).[17]

Other names for Occitan[edit]

For many centuries, the Occitan dialects (together with Catalan)[18] were referred to as Limousin or Provençal, the names of two regions lying within modern Occitania. After Frédéric Mistral's Félibrige movement in the 19th century, Provençal achieved the greatest literary recognition and so became the most popular term for Occitan.

According to Joseph Anglade, a philologist and specialist of medieval literature who helped impose the then archaic term Occitan as the sole correct name,[19] the word Lemosin was first used to designate the language at the beginning of the 13th century by Catalan troubadour Raimon Vidal de Besalú in his Razós de trobar:

La parladura Francesca val mais et [es] plus avinenz a far romanz e pasturellas; mas cella de Lemozin val mais per far vers et cansons et serventés; et per totas las terras de nostre lengage son de major autoritat li cantar de la lenga Lemosina que de negun'autra parladura, per qu'ieu vos en parlarai primeramen.[20]

The French language is worthier and better suited for romances and pastourelles; but the language from Limousin is of greater value for writing poems and cançons and sirventés; and across the whole of the lands where our tongue is spoken, the literature in the Limousin language has more authority than any other dialect, wherefore I shall use this name in priority.

As for the word Provençal, it should not be taken as strictly meaning the language of Provence, but of Occitania as a whole, for "in the eleventh, the twelfth, and sometimes also the thirteenth centuries, one would understand under the name of Provence the whole territory of the old Provincia Romana and even Aquitaine".[21] The term first came into fashion in Italy.[22]

Currently, linguists use the terms "Provençal" and "Limousin" strictly to refer to specific varieties within Occitania, keeping the name "Occitan" for the language as a whole. Many non-specialists, however, continue to refer to the language as Provençal, causing some confusion.

History[edit]

Further information: Old Occitan, Occitan literature

One of the oldest written fragments of the language ever found dates back to the year 960, in an official text that was mixed with Latin:

De ista hora in antea non DECEBRÀ Ermengaus filius Eldiarda Froterio episcopo filio Girberga NE Raimundo filio Bernardo vicecomite de castello de Cornone... NO·L LI TOLRÀ NO·L LI DEVEDARÀ NI NO L'EN DECEBRÀ... nec societatem non AURÀ, si per castellum recuperare NON O FA, et si recuperare potuerit in potestate Froterio et Raimundo LO TORNARÀ, per ipsas horas quæ Froterius et Raimundus L'EN COMONRÀ.[23]

Carolinian litanies (ca 780), both written and sung in Latin, were answered to in Old Occitan by the audience (Ora pro nos; Tu lo juva).[24]

Other famous pieces include the Boecis, a 258-line-long poem written entirely in the Limousin dialect of Occitan between the year 1000 and 1030 and inspired by Boethius's The Consolation of Philosophy; the Waldensian La nobla leyczon (dated 1100),[25] la Cançó de Santa Fe (ca 1054–1076), the Romance of Flamenca (13th century), the Song of the Albigensian Crusade (1213–1219?), Daurel e Betó (12th or 13th century), Las, qu'i non sun sparvir, astur (11th century) and Tomida femina (9th or 10th century).

Occitan was the vehicle for the influential poetry of the medieval troubadours (trovadores) and trobairises: At that time, the language was understood and celebrated throughout most of educated Europe.[26] It was the maternal language of the English queen Eleanor of Aquitaine and kings Richard I of England (who wrote troubadour poetry) and John, King of England. With the gradual imposition of French royal power over its territory, Occitan declined in status from the 14th century on. By the Ordinance of Villers-Cotterêts (1539) it was decreed that the langue d'oïl (Northern French) should be used for all French administration. Occitan's greatest decline was during the French Revolution, during which diversity of language was considered a threat.

The literary renaissance of the late 19th century (which included a Nobel Prize for Frédéric Mistral) was attenuated by the World War I, when Occitan speakers spent extended periods of time alongside French-speaking comrades.

Origins[edit]

Linguistic map Southwestern Europe.gif

Because the geographical territory in which Occitan is spoken is surrounded by regions in which other Romance languages are used, external influences could have influenced its origin and development. Many factors favoured its development as a language of its own.

  • Mountains and seas: The range of Occitan is bounded naturally by the Mediterranean Sea, the Atlantic Ocean, the Massif Central, the Pyrenees, and the Alps.
  • Buffer zones: Arid land, marshes, and areas otherwise impractical for farming and resistant of colonization provide further separation (territory between Loire and Garonne, the Aragon desert plateau).
  • Constant populations: Some Occitan-speaking peoples are descended from people living in the region since prehistory[27]
  • Little Celtic influence[27]
  • Ancient and long-term Roman influence: Julius Caesar once said that the people of Aquitaine could teach the Romans themselves to speak Latin more correctly. According to Müller, "France's linguistic separation began with Roman influence"[28]
  • A separate lexicon: Although Occitan is midway between the Gallo-Romance and Iberian Romance languages, it has "around 550 words inherited from Latin that do not exist in the langues d'oïl or in Franco-Provençal"[28]
  • Little Germanization: "The Frankish lexicon and its phonetic influence often end above the oc/oïl line"[28]

Occitan in Spain[edit]

Catalan in Spain's northern and central Mediterranean coastal regions and the Balearic Islands is closely related to Occitan, sharing many linguistic features and a common origin (see Occitano-Romance languages). The language was one of the first to gain prestige as a medium for literature among Romance languages in the Middle Ages. Indeed, in the 12th and 13th centuries, Catalan troubadours such as Guerau de Cabrera, Guilhem de Bergadan, Guilhem de Cabestany, Huguet de Mataplana, Raimon Vidal de Besalú, Cerverí de Girona, Formit de Perpinhan, and Jofre de Foixà wrote in Occitan.

At the end of the 11th century, the Franks, as they were called at the time, started to penetrate the Iberian Peninsula through the Ways of St. James via Somport and Roncesvalles, settling on various spots of the Kingdoms of Navarre and Aragon enticed by the privileges granted them by the Navarrese kings. They established themselves in ethnic boroughs where Occitan was used for everyday life, e.g. Pamplona, Sangüesa, Estella-Lizarra, etc.[29] The language in turn became the status language chosen by the Navarrese kings, nobility and upper classes for official and trade purposes in the period stretching from the early 13th century to late 14th century.[30] These boroughs in Navarre may have been close-knit communities with little mingling, in a context where the natural milieu was predominantly Basque-speaking. The variant chosen for written administrative records was a koiné based on the Languedocien dialect from Toulouse with fairly archaic linguistic features.

Evidence of a written account in Occitan from Pamplona revolving around the burning of borough San Nicolas has reached up to our days (1258), while the History of the War of Navarre by Guilhem Anelier (1276) albeit written in Pamplona shows a linguistic variant from Toulouse.[31]

Things turned out slightly otherwise in Aragon, where the sociolinguistic situation was different, with a clearer Basque-Romance bilingual situation (cf. Basques from the Val d'Aran cited c. 1000),[32] but a receding Basque language (Basque banned in the marketplace of Huesca, 1349).[33][34] While the language was chosen as a medium of prestige in records and official statements along with Latin in the early 13th century, Occitan faced competition from the rising local Romance vernacular, the Navarro-Aragonese, both orally and in writing, especially after Aragon's territorial conquests south to Zaragoza, Huesca and Tudela between 1118 and 1134. It resulted that a second Occitan immigration of this period was assimilated by the similar Navarro-Aragonese language, which at the same time was fostered and chosen by the kings of Aragon. The language fell into decay in the 14th century across the whole southern Pyrenean area and became largely absorbed into Navarro-Aragonese first and Castilian later in the 15th century, after their exclusive boroughs broke up (1423, Pamplona's boroughs unified).[35]

Gascon-speaking communities were called in for trading purposes by Navarrese kings in the early 12th century to the coastal fringe extending from Donostia to the Bidasoa River, where they settled down. The language variant used was different from the ones used in Navarre, i.e. a Béarnese dialect of Gascon,[36] with Gascon being in use far longer than in Navarre and Aragon until the 19th century, thanks mainly to the close ties held by Donostia and Pasaia with Bayonne.

Geographic distribution[edit]

Usage in France[edit]

"Speak French, Be Clean" written across the wall of a Southern French school
This bilingual street sign in Toulouse, like many such signs found in historical parts of the city, is maintained primarily for its antique charm; it is typical of what little remains of the lenga d'òc in southern French cities.

Though it was still an everyday language for most of the rural population of southern France well into the 20th century, it has been all but replaced by the systematic imposition of the French language. According to the 1999 census, there are 610,000 native speakers (almost all of whom are also native French speakers) and perhaps another million persons with some exposure to the language. Following the pattern of language shift, most of this remainder is to be found among the eldest populations. Occitan activists (called Occitanists) have attempted, in particular with the advent of Occitan-language preschools (the Calandretas), to reintroduce the language to the young.

Nonetheless, the number of proficient speakers of Occitan is dropping precipitously. A tourist in the cities in southern France is unlikely to hear a single Occitan word spoken on the street (or, for that matter, in a home), and is likely to only find the occasional vestige, such as street signs (and, of those, most will have French equivalents more prominently displayed), to remind them of the traditional language of the area.

Occitans, as a result of more than 200 years of conditioned suppression and humiliation (see Vergonha), seldom speak their own language in the presence of foreigners, whether they are from abroad or from outside Occitania (in this case, often merely and abusively referred to as Parisiens or Nordistes, which means northerners). Occitan is still spoken by many elderly people in rural areas, but they generally switch to French when dealing with outsiders.

Occitan's decline is somewhat less pronounced in Bearn because of the province's history (a late addition to the Kingdom of France), though even there the language is little spoken outside the homes of the rural elderly. The village of Artix is notable for having elected to post street signs in the local language.

Usage outside France[edit]

Aranese signage in Bossòst, Val d'Aran, Spain
  • In the Val d'Aran, in the northwest corner of Catalonia, Spain, Aranese (a variety of Gascon) is spoken. It is an official language of Catalonia together with Catalan and Spanish.
  • In Italy, Occitan is also spoken in the Occitan Valleys (Alps) in Piedmont and Liguria. An Occitan-speaking enclave also has existed at Guardia Piemontese (Calabria) since the 14th century. Italy adopted in 1999 a Linguistic Minorities Protection Law, or "Law 482", which includes Occitan; however, Italian is the dominant language. It should be noted that the Piedmontese language is extremely close to Occitan.
  • In Monaco, some Occitan speakers coexist with remaining native Monégasque (Ligurian). French is the dominant language.
  • Scattered Occitan-speaking communities exist in different countries:
    • There were Occitan-speaking colonies in Württemberg (Germany) since the 18th century, as a consequence of the Camisard war. The last Occitan speakers were heard in the 1930s.
    • In the Spanish Basque country, Gascon was spoken in the centre of Donostia-San Sebastián, perhaps until the beginning of the 20th century.[37]
    • In the Americas, Occitan speakers exist:
      • in the United States, in Valdese, North Carolina[38][39]
      • in Canada, in Quebec where there are Occitan associations such as Association Occitane du Québec and Association des Occitans.[40]
      • Pigüé, Argentina – Community settled by 165 Occitans from the Rodez-Aveyron area of Cantal in the late 19th century.
      • Guanajuato, Mexico – A sparse number of Occitan settlers are known to have settled in that state in the 19th century.[41]

Traditionally Occitan-speaking areas[edit]

  • Aquitaine – excluding the Basque-speaking part of the Pyrénées-Atlantiques in the western part of the department and a small part of Gironde where the langue d'oïl Saintongeais dialect is spoken. The towns of Biarritz, Anglet and Bayonne are originally Occitan-speaking, with Basque-speaking groups, but their Basque populations grew sharply during the industrial revolution.
  • Midi-Pyrénées – including one of France's largest cities, Toulouse. There are a few street signs in Toulouse in Occitan, and since late 2009 the Toulouse Metro announcements are bilingual French-Occitan,[42] but otherwise the language is almost never heard spoken on the street.
  • Languedoc-Roussillon (from "Lenga d'òc") – including the areas around the medieval city of Carcassonne, excluding the large part of the Pyrénées-Orientales where Catalan is spoken (Fenolheda is the only Occitan-speaking area of the Pyrénées-Orientales).
  • Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur – except for the Roya and Bévéra valleys, where there is a transitional dialect between Ligurian and Occitan, (Roiasc, including the Brigasc dialect of Ligurian). There were former and now extinct isolated towns that spoke Ligurian in the department of Alpes-Maritimes. The Mentonasc dialect of Ligurian, spoken in Menton, is an Occitan transition dialect with a strong Ligurian influence.
  • In Monaco, Occitan coexists with the Monégasque dialect of Ligurian. French is the dominant (and imposed) language.
  • Poitou-Charentes – Use of Occitan has declined here in the few parts it used to be spoken, replaced by French. Only Charente Limousine, the eastern part of the region, has resisted. The natural and historical languages of most of the region are the langues d'oïl Poitevin and Saintongeais.
  • Limousin – A rural region (about 710,000 inhabitants) where Limousin is still spoken among the oldest residents.
  • Auvergne – The language's use has declined in some urban areas. The department of Allier is divided between a southern, Occitan-speaking area and a northern, French-speaking area.
  • Centre Region – Some villages in the extreme South speak Occitan.
  • Rhône-Alpes – While the south of the region is clearly Occitan-speaking, the central and northern Lyonnais, Forez and Dauphiné parts belong to the Franco-Provençal language area.
  • Occitan Valleys (Piedmont, Liguria) – Italian regions where Occitan is spoken only in the southern and central Alpine valleys.
  • Val d'Aran – part of Catalonia that speaks a mountain dialect of Gascon.

Number of speakers[edit]

The area where Occitan was historically dominant is home to some 16 million inhabitants. Recent research has shown it may be spoken as a first language by as many as 789,000 people[1][2] in France, Italy, Spain and Monaco. In Monaco, Occitan coexists with Monégasque Ligurian, which is the other native language.[43][44] Some researchers state that up to seven million people in France understand the language,[45][46][47] while twelve to fourteen million fully spoke it in 1921.[48] In 1860, Occitan speakers represented more than 39%[49] of the whole French population (52% for francophones proper); they were still 26% to 36% in the 1920s[50] and fewer than 7% in 1993.

Dialects[edit]

Occitan dialects according to Pierre Bec
Supradialectal classification of Occitan according to Bec
Supradialectal classification of Occitan according to Sumien

Occitan is fundamentally defined by its dialects, rather than being a unitary language. That point is very conflictual in Southern France, as many people do not recognize Occitan as a real language and think that the next defined "dialects" are languages.[51][52] Like other languages that fundamentally exist at a spoken, rather than written, level (e.g. Rhaeto-Romance, Franco-Provençal, Astur-Leonese, and Aragonese), every settlement technically has its own dialect, with the whole of Occitania forming a classic dialect continuum that changes gradually along any path from one side to the other. Nonetheless, specialists commonly divide Occitan into six main dialects:

Gascon is generally considered the most divergent, and descriptions of the main features of Occitan often consider Gascon separately. Max Wheeler notes that "probably only its copresence within the French cultural sphere has kept [Gascon] from being regarded as a separate language", and compares it to Franco-Provençal, which is considered a separate language from Occitan but is "probably not more divergent from Occitan overall than Gascon is."[53]

There is no general agreement about larger groupings of these dialects.

Max Wheeler divides the dialects into two groups:[53]

  • Southwestern (Gascon and Languedocien), more conservative
  • Northeastern (Limousin, Auvergnat, Provençal and Vivaro-Alpine), more innovative

Pierre Bec divides the dialects into three groups:[54]

Bec also notes that some linguists prefer a "supradialectal" classification that groups Occitan with Catalan as a part of a wider Occitano-Romanic group. One such classification posits three groups:

  • "Arverno-Mediterranean" (arvèrnomediterranèu), same as Wheeler's northeastern group, i.e. Limousin, Auvergnat, Provençal and Vivaro-Alpine
  • "Central Occitan" (occitan centrau), Languedocien, excepting the Southern Languedocien subdialect
  • "Aquitano-Pyrenean" (aquitanopirenenc), Southern Languedocien, Gascon and Catalan

According to this view, Catalan is an ausbau language that became independent from Occitan during the 13th century, but originates from the Aquitano-Pyrenean group.

Domergue Sumien proposes a slightly different supradialectal grouping.[55]

  • Arverno-Mediterranean (arvèrnomediterranèu), same as in Bec and Wheeler, divided further:
    • Niçard-Alpine (niçardoaupenc), Vivaro-Alpine along with the Niçard subdialect of Provençal
    • Trans-Occitan (transoccitan), the remainder of Provençal along with Limousin and Auvergnat
  • Pre-Iberian (preïberic)
    • Central Occitan (occitan centrau), same as in Bec
    • Aquitano-Pyrenean (aquitanopirenenc), same as in Bec

Codification[edit]

Standardisation[edit]

All these regional varieties of the Occitan language are written and valid. Standard Occitan, also called occitan larg (i.e., 'wide Occitan') is a synthesis that respects and admits soft regional adaptations (which are based on the convergence of previous regional koines). So Occitan can be considered as a pluricentric language.[55] The standardisation process began with the publication of Gramatica occitana segon los parlars lengadocians, grammar of the languedocien dialect, by Louis Alibert (1935), followed by the Dictionnaire occitan-français selon les parlers languedociens (French-Occitan dictionary according to Languedocien) by the same author (1966), completed during the 1970s with the works of Pierre Bec (Gascon), Robèrt Lafont (Provençal) and others. But it has not been achieved yet[clarification needed]. It is mostly supported by users of the classical norm. Due to the strong situation of diglossia, some users still reject the standardisation process and do not conceive Occitan as a language that could work just as other standardised languages.

Writing system[edit]

Further information: Occitan alphabet

There are two main linguistic norms currently used for Occitan, one (known as "classical"), which is based on that of Mediaeval Occitan, and one (sometimes known as "Mistralian", due to its use by Frédéric Mistral), which is based on modern French orthography. Sometimes, there is conflict between users of each system.

  • The classical norm (or less exactly classical orthography) has the advantage of maintaining a link with earlier stages of the language, and reflects the fact that Occitan is not a variety of French. It is used in all Occitan dialects. It also allows speakers of one dialect of Occitan to write intelligibly for speakers of other dialects (e.g., the Occitan for day is written jorn in the classical norm, but could be jour, joun or journ, depending on the writer's origin, in Mistralian orthography). The Occitan classical orthography and the Catalan orthography are quite similar: They show the very close ties of both languages. The digraphs lh and nh, used in the classical orthography, were adopted by the orthography of Portuguese, presumably by Gerald of Braga, a monk from Moissac, who became bishop of Braga in Portugal in 1047, playing a major role in modernizing written Portuguese using classical Occitan norms.[56]
  • The Mistralian norm (or less exactly Mistralian orthography) has the advantage of being similar to that of French, in which most Occitan speakers are literate. Now, it is used mostly in the Provençal/Niçard dialect, besides the classical norm. It has also been used by a number of eminent writers, particularly in Provençal. However, it is somewhat impractical, since it is based mainly on the Provençal dialect and also uses many digraphs for simple sounds, the most notable one being ou for the [u] sound, as it is in French, written as o under the classical orthography.

There are also two other norms but they have a lesser audience. The Escòla dau Pò norm (or Escolo dóu Po norm) is a simplified version of the Mistralian norm and is used only in the Occitan Valleys (Italy), besides the classical norm. The Bonnaudian norm (or écriture auvergnate unifiée, EAU) was created by Pierre Bonnaud and is used only in the Auvergnat dialect, besides the classical norm.

Comparison between the four existing norms in Occitan: extract from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights
Classical norm Mistralian norm Bonnaudian norm Escòla dau Pò norm
Provençal
Totei lei personas naisson liuras e egalas en dignitat e en drech. Son dotadas de rason e de consciéncia e li cau (/fau) agir entre elei amb un esperit de frairesa.
Provençal
Tóuti li persouno naisson liéuro e egalo en dignita e en dre. Soun doutado de rasoun e de counsciènci e li fau agi entre éli em' un esperit de freiresso.
Niçard Provençal
Toti li personas naisson liuri e egali en dignitat e en drech. Son dotadi de rason e de consciéncia e li cau agir entre eli emb un esperit de frairesa.
Niçard Provençal
Touti li persouna naisson liéuri e egali en dignità e en drech. Soun doutadi de rasoun e de counsciència e li cau agì entre eli em' un esperit de frairessa.
Auvergnat
Totas las personas naisson liuras e egalas en dignitat e en dreit. Son dotadas de rason e de consciéncia e lor chau (/fau) agir entre elas amb un esperit de frairesa.
Auvergnat
Ta la proussouna neisson lieura moé parira pà dïnessà mai dret. Son charjada de razou moé de cousiensà mai lhu fau arjî entremeî lha bei n'eime de freiressà. (Touta la persouna naisson lieura e egala en dïnetàt e en dreit. Soun doutada de razou e de cousiensà e lour chau ajî entre ela am en esprî de freiressà.)
Vivaro-Alpine
Totas las personas naisson liuras e egalas en dignitat e en drech. Son dotaas de rason e de consciéncia e lor chal agir entre elas amb un esperit de fraternitat.
Vivaro-Alpine
Toutes les persounes naisoun liures e egales en dignità e en drech. Soun douta de razoun e de counsiensio e lour chal agir entre eels amb (/bou) un esperit de freireso.
Gascon
Totas las personas que naishen liuras e egaus en dignitat e en dreit. Que son dotadas de rason e de consciéncia e que'us cau agir enter eras dab un esperit de hrairessa.
Gascon (Febusian writing)
Toutes las persounes que nachen libres e egaus en dinnitat e en dreyt. Que soun doutades de rasoû e de counscienci e qu'ous cau ayi entre eres dap û esperit de hrayresse.
Limousin
Totas las personas naisson liuras e egalas en dignitat e en drech. Son dotadas de rason e de consciéncia e lor chau (/fau) agir entre elas emb un esperit de frairesa.
Languedocien
Totas las personas naisson liuras e egalas en dignitat e en drech. Son dotadas de rason e de consciéncia e lor cal agir entre elas amb un esperit de frairesa.
The same extract in five neighboring Romance languages and English for comparison
French
Tous les êtres humains naissent libres et égaux en dignité et en droits. Ils sont doués de raison et de conscience et doivent agir les uns envers les autres dans un esprit de fraternité.[57]
Arpetan
Tôs los étres homans nêssont libros et ègals en dignitât et en drêts. Ils ant rêson et conscience et dêvont fâre los uns envèrs los ôtros dedens un èsprit de fraternitât.[57]
Catalan
Tots els éssers humans neixen/naixen lliures i iguals en dignitat i en drets. Són dotats de raó i de consciència, i han de comportar-se fraternalment els uns amb els altres.[57]
Spanish
Todos los seres humanos nacen libres e iguales en dignidad y derechos y, dotados como están de razón y conciencia, deben comportarse fraternalmente los unos con los otros.[57]
Portuguese
Todos os seres humanos nascem livres e iguais em dignidade e direitos. Eles são dotados de razão e consciência, e devem comportar-se fraternalmente uns com os outros.[57]
Italian
Tutti gli esseri umani nascono liberi ed uguali in dignità e in diritti. Sono dotati di ragione e di coscienza e devono comportarsi fraternamente l'uno con l'altro.[57]
English
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.[58]

Debates concerning linguistic classification and orthography[edit]

The majority of scholars believe that Occitan constitutes a single language.[59] Some authors,[60] constituting a minority,[61] reject this opinion and even the name Occitan: they think that there is a family of distinct languages (called langues d'oc / lengas d'oc in plural) rather than dialects.

Many Occitan linguists and writers,[62] particularly those involved with the pan-Occitan movement centred on the Institut d'Estudis Occitans, disagree with the view that Occitan is a family of languages and think that Limousin, Auvergnat, Languedocien, Gascon, Provençal and Alpine Provençal are dialects of a single language. Though there are some noticeable differences between these varieties, there is a very high degree of mutual intelligibility between them;[63] they also share a common literary history, and in academic and literary circles, have been identified as a collective linguistic entity—the langue d'oc—for centuries.

Some Provençal authors continue to support the view that Provençal is a separate language.[64] Nevertheless, the vast majority of Provençal authors and associations think that Provençal is a part of Occitan.[65]

This debate about the status of Provençal should not be confused with the debate concerning the spelling of Provençal.

  • The classical orthography is phonemic and diasystemic, and so more pan-Occitan. It is used in (and adapted to) all Occitan dialects and regions, including Provençal. Its supporters think that Provençal is a part of Occitan.
  • The Mistralian orthography of Provençal is more or less phonemic but not diasystemic and is closer to the French spelling, and therefore more specific to Provençal; its users are divided between the ones that think that Provençal is a part of Occitan and the ones that think that Provençal is a separate language.

For example, the classical (pan-Occitan) spelling writes Polonha where the Mistralian spelling system has Poulougno, for [puˈluɲo], 'Poland'.

The question of Gascon is similar. Gascon presents a number of significant differences from the rest of the language; but, despite these differences, Gascon and other Occitan dialects have very important common lexical and grammatical features, so authors such as Pierre Bec argue that they could never be considered as different as, for example, Spanish and Italian.[66] In addition, the fact that Gascon is included within Occitan despite its particular differences, can be also justified because there is a common elaboration (Ausbau) process between Gascon and the rest of Occitan.[59] The vast majority of the Gascon cultural movement considers itself as a part of the Occitan cultural movement.[67][68] And the official status of Val d'Aran (Catalonia, Spain), adopted in 1990, says that Aranese is a part of Gascon and Occitan. A grammar of Aranese by Aitor Carrera, published in 2007 in Lleida, presents the same view.

The exclusion of Catalan from the Occitan sphere, although Catalan is closely related, is justified because there has been a consciousness of its being different from Occitan since the later Middle Ages and the elaboration (Ausbau) processes of Catalan and Occitan (including Gascon) have been quite distinct since the 20th century. Nevertheless, other scholars point out that the process that led to the affirmation of Catalan as a distinct language from Occitan was started during the period when the pressure to include Catalan-speaking areas to a mainstream Spanish culture was at its greatest.[69]

Linguistic characterisation[edit]

Jules Ronjat has sought to characterize Occitan by 19 principal criteria, as generalized as possible. Of those, 11 are phonetic, five morphologic, one syntactic, and two lexical. Close rounded vowels (French: rose, yeux) are rare or absent in Occitan. This characteristic often carries through to an Occitan speaker's French, leading to a distinctive méridional accent. Unlike French, it is a pro-drop language, allowing the omission of the subject (canti: I sing; cantas you sing). Among these 19 discriminating criteria, 7 are different from Spanish, 8 from Italian, 12 from Franco-Provençal, and 16 from French.

Features of Occitan[edit]

Most features of Occitan are shared with either French or Catalan, or both.

Features of Occitan as a whole[edit]

Examples of pan-Occitan features shared with French, but not Catalan:

  • Latin ū (Vulgar Latin /uː/) changed to /y/, as in French (Lat. dūrvm > Oc. dur).
  • Vulgar Latin /o/ changed to /u/, first in unstressed syllables, as in Catalan (Lat. romānvs > Oc. roman), then in stressed syllables (Lat. flōrem > Oc. flor).

Examples of pan-Occitan features shared with Catalan, but not French:

  • Stressed Latin a was preserved (Lat. mare > Oc. mar, Fr. mer).
  • Intervocalic -t- was lenited to /d/ rather than lost (Lat. vitam > Oc. vida, Fr. vie).

Examples of pan-Occitan features not shared with Catalan or French:

  • Original /aw/ preserved.
  • Final /a/ becomes /ɔ/ (note in Valencian (Catalan), /ɔ/ may appear in word-final unstressed position, in a process of vowel harmony).
  • Low-mid /ɛ/ and /ɔ/ diphthongized before velars. /ɛ/ generally becomes /jɛ/; /ɔ/ originally became /wɔ/ or /wɛ/, but has since usually undergone further fronting (e.g. to [wœ], [œ], [ɛ], etc.). Diphthongization also occurred before palatals, as in French and Catalan.
  • Various assimilations in consonant clusters (e.g. cc in Occitan, pronounced /utsiˈta/ in conservative Languedocien).

Features of some Occitan dialects[edit]

Examples of dialect-specific features of the northerly dialects shared with French, but not Catalan:

  • Palatalization of ca-, ga- to /tʃa, dʒa/.
  • Vocalization of syllable-final /l/ to /w/.
  • Loss of final consonants.
  • Vocalization of syllable-final nasals to nasal vowels.
  • Uvularization of some or all r sounds.

Examples of dialect-specific features of the southerly dialects (or some of them) shared with Catalan, but not French:

  • Latin -mb-,-nd- become /m, n/.
  • Betacism: /b/ and /v/ merge (feature shared with some Catalan dialects; except for Balearic, Valencian and Alguerese Catalan, where /v/ is preserved).
  • Intervocalic voiced stops /b d ɡ/ (from Latin -p-, -t, -c-) become voiced fricatives [β ð ɣ].
  • Loss of word-final single /n/ (but not /nn/, e.g. an "year" < ānnvm).

Examples of Gascon-specific features not shared with French or Catalan:

  • Latin initial /f/ changed into /h/ (Lat. filivm > Gasc. hilh). This also happened in medieval Spanish, although the /h/ was eventually lost, or reverted to /f/ (before a consonant). The Gascon h has retained its aspiration.
  • Loss of /n/ between vowels. This also happened in Portuguese and Galician (and moreover also in Basque).
  • Change of -ll- to r /ɾ/, or th word-finally (originally the voiceless palatal stop /c/, but now generally either /t/ or /tʃ/, depending on the word). This is a unique characteristic of Gascon.

Examples of other dialect-specific features not shared with French or Catalan:

  • Merging of syllable-final nasals to /ŋ/. This appears to represent a transitional stage before nasalization, and occurs especially in the southerly dialects other than Gascon (which still maintains different final nasals, as in Catalan).
  • Former intervocalic /ð/ (from Latin -d-) becomes /z/ (most dialects, but not Gascon). This appears to have happened in primitive Catalan as well, but Catalan later deleted this sound or converted it to /w/.
  • Palatalization of /jt/ (from Latin ct) to /tʃ/ in most dialects or /(j)t/: lach vs lait (Gascon lèit) 'milk', lucha vs luta (Gascon luta) 'fight'.
  • Weakening of /l/ to /r/ in the Vivaro-Alpine dialect.

Comparison with other Romance languages and English[edit]

Common words in Romance languages, with English (a Germanic language) for reference
Latin
(all nouns in the ablative case)
Occitan
(including main regional varieties)
Catalan French Ladin (Gherdëina) Lombard Italian Spanish Portuguese Sardinian Romanian English
cantare c(h)antar cantar chanter cianté cantà cantare cantar cantar cantare cânta(re) '(to) sing'
capra c(h)abra (craba) cabra chèvre cëura cavra capra cabra cabra craba capră 'goat'
clave clau clau clé tle ciav chiave llave chave crae cheie 'key'
ecclesia, basilica (e)glèisa església église dlieja giesa chiesa iglesia igreja gresia/creia biserică 'church'
formatico (Vulgar Latin), caseo formatge (fromatge, hormatge) formatge fromage ciajuel furmai/furmagg formaggio queso queijo casu caş 'cheese'
lingva leng(u)a (linga) llengua langue lenga, rujeneda lengua lingua lengua língua limba limbă 'tongue, language'
nocte nuèch (nuèit) nit nuit nuet nocc notte noche noite nothe noapte 'night'
platea plaça plaça place plaza piasa piazza/platea plaza praça pratza piaţă[70] 'square, plaza'
ponte pont (pònt) pont pont puent punt ponte puente ponte ponte punte 'bridge'

Lexicon[edit]

A comparison of terms and word counts between languages is not easy, as it is impossible to count the number of words in a language. (See Lexicon, Lexeme, Lexicography for more information.)

Some have claimed around 450,000 words exist in the Occitan language,[71] a number comparable to English (the Webster's Third New International Dictionary, Unabridged with 1993 addenda reaches 470,000 words, as does the Oxford English Dictionary, Second edition). The Merriam-Webster Web site estimates that the number is somewhere between 250,000 and 1 million words.

The magazine Géo (2004, p. 79) claims that American English literature can be more easily translated into Occitan than French, excluding modern technological terms that both languages have integrated.

A comparison of the lexical content can find more subtle differences between the languages. For example, Occitan has 128 synonyms related to cultivated land, 62 for wetlands, and 75 for sunshine (Géo). The language went through an eclipse during the Industrial Revolution, as the vocabulary of the countryside became less important. At the same time, it was disparaged as a patois. Nevertheless, Occitan has also incorporated new words into its lexicon to describe the modern world. The Occitan word for web is oèb, for example.

One interesting and useful feature of the Occitan language is its virtually infinite ability to create new words through a number of interchangeable and imbeddable suffixes, giving the original terms a whole array of semantic nuances.

Differences between Occitan and Catalan[edit]

The separation of Catalan from Occitan is seen by some[citation needed] as largely politically (rather than linguistically) motivated. However, the variety that has become standard Catalan does differ from that which has become standard Occitan in a number of ways. The following are just a few examples:

  • Phonology
    • Standard Catalan (based on Central Eastern Catalan) is unique in that Latin short e developed into a close vowel /e/ (é) and Latin long e developed into an open vowel /ɛ/ (è); this is precisely the reverse of the development that took place in Western Catalan dialects, and the rest of the Romance languages, including Occitan. Thus Standard Catalan ésser [ˈesə] corresponds to Occitan èsser/èstre [ˈɛse/ˈɛstre] 'to be;' Catalan carrer [kəˈre] corresponds to Occitan carrièra [karˈjɛɾo̞] 'street.'
    • The distinctly Occitan development of word-final -a, pronounced [o̞] in standard Occitan (e.g. chifra 'figure' [ˈtʃifro̞]), did not occur in general Catalan (which has xifra [ˈʃifrə]). However, some Occitan varieties also lack this feature and some Catalan (Valencian) varieties have the [ɔ] pronunciation mostly happening during a vowel harmony process.
    • When in Catalan word stress falls in the antepenultimate syllable, in Occitan the stress is moved to the penultimate syllable: for example, Occitan pagina [paˈdʒino̞] vs. Catalan pàgina [ˈpaʒinə], "page". However, some varieties of Occitan (e.g., around Nice) keep the stress on the antepenultimate syllable (pàgina) while some varieties of Catalan (in Northern Catalonia) put the stress on the penultimate syllable (pagina).
    • Diphthongisation has evolved in different ways, e.g. Occitan paire vs. Catalan pare 'father;' Occitan carrièra (carrèra, carrèira) vs. Catalan carrera.
    • Some Occitan dialects lack the voiceless postalveolar fricative phoneme /ʃ/ but south-western Occitan presents it, e.g. general Occitan caissa [ˈkajso̞] vs. Catalan caixa [ˈkaʃə] and south-western Occitan caissa, caisha [ˈka(j)ʃo̞], 'box.' Nevertheless, some Valencian dialects like Northern Valencian lack that phoneme too, generally substituted for /jsʲ/; e.g. caixa [ˈkajʃa] (Standard Valencian) ~ [ˈkajsʲa] (Northern Valencian).
    • Occitan has developed the close front rounded vowel /y/ as a phoneme, often (but not always) corresponding to Catalan /u/, e.g. Occitan musica [myˈziko̞] vs. Catalan música [ˈmuzikə].
    • The distribution of palatal consonants /ʎ/ and /ɲ/ differs in Catalan and a part of Occitan: while Catalan permits these sounds in word-final position, in central Occitan they are neutralised to [l] and [n] (e.g. central Occitan filh [fil] vs. Catalan fill [fiʎ], 'son'). Non-central varieties of Occitan, however, can have a palatal realization (e.g. filh, hilh [fiʎ, fij, hiʎ]). However, Alguerese Catalan neutralizes those palatal consonants in word-final position as well.
    • Also, many words that start with /l/ in Occitan start with /ʎ/ in Catalan, e.g. Occitan libre [ˈliβɾe] vs. Catalan llibre [ˈʎiβɾə], 'book.' This is perhaps one of the most distinctive characteristics of Catalan amongst the Romance languages, only shared with Asturian, Leonese and Mirandese. However, some transitional varieties of Occitan, near to the Catalan area, also have initial /ʎ/.
    • While /l/ is always clear in Occitan, in Catalan it tends to be velarized [ɫ] ("dark l"). In coda position, /l/ has tended to be vocalized to [w] in Occitan, while remained dark in Catalan.
    • Standard Eastern Catalan has a neutral vowel [ə] whenever a or e occur in unstressed position (e.g. passar [pəˈsa], 'to happen,' but passa [ˈpasə], 'it happens'), and also [u] whenever o or u occur in unstressed position, e.g. obrir [uˈβɾi], 'to open', but obre [ˈɔβɾə], 'you open'. However, this does not apply to Western Catalan dialects, whose vowel system usually retains the a/e distinction in unstressed position, nor to Northern Catalan dialects, whose vowel system does not retain the o/u distinction in stressed position, much like Occitan.
  • Morphology
    • Verb conjugation is slightly different, although there is a great variety amongst dialects. Medieval conjugations were much closer. A characteristic difference is the ending of the second person plural, which is -u in Catalan but -tz in Occitan.
    • Occitan tends to add an analogical -a to the feminine forms of adjectives that are invariable in standard Catalan: for example, Occitan legal / legala vs. Catalan legal / legal.
    • Catalan has a distinctive past tense formation, known as the 'periphrastic preterite,' formed from a variant of the verb 'to go' plus the infinitive of the verb: donar 'to give,' va donar 'he gave.' This has the same value as the 'normal' preterite shared by most Romance languages, deriving from the Latin perfect tense: in Catalan, donà 'he gave.' The periphrastic preterite only exists in Occitan as an archaic or as a very local tense.
  • Orthography
    • The writing systems of the two languages differ slightly. The modern Occitan spelling recommended by the Institut d'Estudis Occitans and the Conselh de la Lenga Occitana is designed to be a pan-Occitan system, whereas the Catalan system recommended by the Institut d'Estudis Catalans and Acadèmia Valenciana de la Llengua is specific to Catalan and Valencian. For example, in Catalan, word-final -n is omitted, as this is not pronounced in any dialect of Catalan (so we have Català, Occità); central Occitan also drops word-final -n, but it is retained in the spelling, as some eastern and western dialects of Occitan do retain the final consonant (so we have Catalan, Occitan). Some digraphs are also written in a different way such as the sound /ʎ/, which is –ll– in Catalan (similar to Spanish) and –lh– in Occitan (similar to Portuguese) or the sound /ɲ/ written –ny– in Catalan and –nh– in Occitan.

Occitano-Romance linguistic group[edit]

Despite these differences, Occitan and Catalan remain more or less mutually comprehensible, especially when written — more so than either is with Spanish or French, for example. Occitan and Catalan form a common diasystem (or a common Abstandsprache), which is called Occitano-Romance, according to the linguist Pierre Bec.[72] Speakers of both languages share early historical and cultural heritage.

The combined Occitano-Romance area is 259,000 km2 and represents 23 million speakers. However, the regions are not equal in terms of language speakers. According to Bec 1969 (pp. 120–121), in France, no more than a quarter of the population in counted regions speak Occitan well, though around half can understand it; it is thought that the number of Occitan users has decreased dramatically since then. By contrast, in the Spanish Catalonia, nearly three quarters of the population speak Catalan and 95% understand it.[73]

Occitan quotes[edit]

According to the testimony of Bernadette Soubirous, the Virgin Mary spoke to her (Lourdes, 25 March 1858) in Gascon saying: Que sòi era Immaculada Concepcion ("I am the Immaculate Conception", the phrase is reproduced under this statue in the Lourdes grotto with a Mistralian/Febusian spelling), confirming the proclamation of this Catholic dogma four years earlier.

One of the most notable passages of Occitan in Western literature occurs in the 26th canto of Dante's Purgatorio in which the troubadour Arnaut Daniel responds to the narrator:

"Tan m'abellís vostre cortés deman, / qu'ieu no me puesc ni voill a vos cobrire. / Ieu sui Arnaut, que plor e vau cantan; / consirós vei la passada folor, / e vei jausen lo joi qu'esper, denan. / Ara vos prec, per aquella valor / que vos guida al som de l'escalina, / sovenha vos a temps de ma dolor"
Modern Occitan: Tan m'abelís vòstra cortesa demanda, / que ieu non pòdi ni vòli m'amagar de vos. / Ieu soi Arnaut, que plori e vau cantant; / consirós vesi la foliá passada, / e vesi joiós lo jorn qu'espèri, davant. / Ara vos prègui, per aquela valor / que vos guida al som de l'escalièr, / sovenhatz-vos tot còp de ma dolor.

The above strophe translates to:

So pleases me your courteous demand, / I cannot and I will not hide me from you. / I am Arnaut, who weep and singing go;/ Contrite I see the folly of the past, / And joyous see the hoped-for day before me. / Therefore do I implore you, by that power/ Which guides you to the summit of the stairs, / Be mindful to assuage my suffering!

Another notable Occitan quotation, this time from Arnaut Daniel's own 10th Canto:

"Ieu sui Arnaut qu'amas l'aura
e chatz le lebre ab lo bou
e nadi contra suberna"

Modern Occitan:

"Ieu soi Arnaut qu'aimi l'aura
e caci [chaci] la lèbre amb lo buòu
e nadi contra subèrna.

Translation:

"I am Arnaut who loves the wind,
and chases the hare with the ox,
and swims against the torrent."

French writer Victor Hugo's classic Les Misérables also contains some Occitan. In Part One, First Book, Chapter IV, "Les œuvres semblables aux paroles", one can read about Monseigneur Bienvenu:

"Né provençal, il s'était facilement familiarisé avec tous les patois du midi. Il disait: — E ben, monsur, sètz saget? comme dans le bas Languedoc. — Ont anaratz passar? comme dans les basses Alpes. — Pòrti un bon moton amb un bon formatge gras, comme dans le haut Dauphiné. [...] Parlant toutes les langues, il entrait dans toutes les âmes."

Translation:

"Born a Provençal, he easily familiarized himself with the dialect of the south. He would say, E ben, monsur, sètz saget? as in lower Languedoc; Ont anaratz passar? as in the Basses-Alpes; Pòrti un bon moton amb un bon formatge gras as in upper Dauphiné. [...] As he spoke all tongues, he entered into all hearts."
E ben, monsur, sètz saget?: So, Mister, everything's fine?
Ont anaratz passar?: Which way will you go?
Pòrti un bon moton amb un bon formatge gras: I brought some fine mutton with a fine fat cheese

The Spanish playwright Lope de Rueda included a Gascon servant for comical effect in one of his short pieces, La generosa paliza.[74]

John Barnes's Thousand Cultures science fiction series (A Million Open Doors, 1992; Earth Made of Glass, 1998; The Merchants of Souls, 2001; and The Armies of Memory, 2006), features Occitan. So does the 2005 best-selling novel Labyrinth by English author Kate Mosse. It is set in Carcassonne, where she owns a house and spends half of the year.

The French composer Joseph Canteloube created five sets of folk songs entitled Songs of the Auvergne, in which the lyrics are in the Auvergne dialect of Occitan. The orchestration strives to conjure vivid pastoral scenes of yesteryear.

Michael Crichton features Occitan in his Timeline novel.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Fabrice BERNISSAN (2012). "Combien l'occitan compte de locuteurs en 2012 ?", Revue de Linguistique Romane, 76 (12/2011-07/2012), pp. 467-512
  2. ^ a b « De fait, le nombre des locuteurs de l’occitan a pu être estimé par l’INED dans un premier temps à 526 000 personnes, puis à 789 000, » ("In fact, the number of occitan speakers was estimated by the French Demographics Institute at 526,000 people, then 789,000") Philippe Martel, "Qui parle occitan ?" in Langues et cité n°10, December 2007.
  3. ^ [L.cost. 26 febbraio 1948, n. 4, Statuto speciale per la Valle d'Aosta; L.cost. 26 febbraio 1948, n. 5, Statuto speciale per il Trentino-Alto Adige; L.cost. 31 gennaio 1963, n. 1, Statuto speciale della Regione Friuli Venezia Giulia]
  4. ^ Norme in materia di tutela delle minoranze linguistiche storiche, Italian parliament 
  5. ^ CLO's statements in Lingüistica Occitana (online review of Occitan linguistics).
  6. ^ Congrès permanent de la langue occitane / Congrès permanent de la lenga occitana - Un nouvel organisme de régulation de l’occitan au service des usagers et des locuteurs
  7. ^ Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Occitan". Glottolog 2.2. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. 
  8. ^ "Occitan". Oxford English Dictionary (3rd ed.). Oxford University Press. September 2005. 
  9. ^ Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary, 7th edition, 2005.
  10. ^ Regional pronunciations: occitan = [u(t)siˈtaⁿ, u(t)siˈtɔ, ukʃiˈtɔ].
  11. ^ As stated in its Statute of Autonomy approved. See Article 6.5 in the Parlament-cat.net, text of the 2006 Statute of Catalonia (PDF)
  12. ^ Smith and Bergin. Old Provençal Primer, p. 9.
  13. ^ Dalby, Andrew (1998). "Occitan". Dictionary of Languages (1st ed.). Bloomsbury Publishing plc. p. 468. ISBN 0-7475-3117-X. Retrieved 8 November 2006. 
  14. ^ Languages Atlas, UNESCO
  15. ^ Badia i Margarit, Antoni M. (1995). Gramàtica de la llengua catalana: Descriptiva, normativa, diatòpica, diastràtica. Barcelona: Proa. , 253.1 (Catalan)
  16. ^ Antoine Fabre d'Olivet: Le troubadour, poésies occitaniques du XIIIe siècle, 1803, p. I: Occitanique est un mot nouveau, adopté pour exprimer à-la-fois le Provençal et le Languedocien, et généralement tous les dialectes dérivés de l'ancienne langue d'Oc ("Occitan is a new word that is used to designate both Provençal and Languedocien, and in general all the dialects derived from the old langue d'Oc").
  17. ^ Smith and Bergin, Old Provençal Primer, p. 2
  18. ^ Lapobladelduc.org, "El nom de la llengua". The name of the language, in Catalan
  19. ^ Anglade 1921, p. 10: Sur Occitania ont été formés les adjectifs latins occitanus, occitanicus et les adjectifs français occitanique, occitanien, occitan (ce dernier terme plus récent), qui seraient excellents et qui ne prêteraient pas à la même confusion que provençal.
  20. ^ Anglade 1921, p. 7.
  21. ^ Camille Chabaneau et al, Histoire générale de Languedoc, 1872, p. 170: Au onzième, douzième et encore parfois au XIIIe siècle, on comprenait sous le nom de Provence tout le territoire de l'ancienne Provincia Romana et même de l'Aquitaine.
  22. ^ Anglade 1921, p. 7: Ce terme fut surtout employé en Italie.
  23. ^ Raynouard, François Juste Marie (1817). Choix des poésies originales des troubadours (Volume 2) (in French). Paris: F. Didot. p. 40. 
  24. ^ Raynouard, François Juste Marie (1816). Choix des poésies originales des troubadours (Volume 1) (in French). Paris: F. Didot. p. vij. 
  25. ^ Raynouard, François Juste Marie (1817). Choix des poésies originales des troubadours (Volume 2) (in French). Paris: F. Didot. p. cxxxvij. : "Ben ha mil e cent (1100) ancs complí entierament / Que fo scripta l'ora car sen al derier temps."
  26. ^ Charles Knight, Penny Cyclopaedia of the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge, Vol. XXV, 1843, p. 308: "At one time the language and poetry of the troubadours were in fashion in most of the courts of Europe."
  27. ^ a b Bec 1963.
  28. ^ a b c Bec 1963, pp. 20-21.
  29. ^ Cierbide Martinena, Ricardo (1996). "Convivencia histórica de lenguas y culturas en Navarra". Caplletra: Revista Internacional de Filología (València (etc) : Institut Interuniversitari de Filologia Valenciana; Abadia de Montserrat) (20): 247. ISSN 0214-8188. 
  30. ^ Cierbide Martinena, Ricardo (1998). "Notas gráfico-fonéticas sobre la documentación medieval navarra". Príncipe de Viana (214): 524. ISSN 0032-8472. 
  31. ^ Cierbide Martinena, Ricardo (1996). "Convivencia histórica de lenguas y culturas en Navarra". Caplletra: Revista Internacional de Filología (València (etc) : Institut Interuniversitari de Filologia Valenciana; Abadia de Montserrat) (20): 247–249. ISSN 0214-8188. 
  32. ^ Morvan, Michel (1997). Les origines linguistiques du Basque. Bordeaux: Presses Universitaires de Bordeaux (PUB). p. 26. ISBN 978-2-86781-182-1. 
  33. ^ Jurio, Jimeno (1997). Navarra: Historia del Euskera. Tafalla: Txalaparta. pp. 59–60. ISBN 978-84-8136-062-2. 
  34. ^ "Licenciado Andrés de Poza y Yarza". EuskoMedia Fundazioa. Retrieved 17 February 2010.  Poza quotes the Basques inhabiting lands as far east as the River Gallego in the 16th century
  35. ^ Cierbide Martinena, Ricardo (1996). "Convivencia histórica de lenguas y culturas en Navarra". Caplletra: Revista Internacional de Filología (València (etc) : Institut Interuniversitari de Filologia Valenciana; Abadia de Montserrat) (20): 249. ISSN 0214-8188. 
  36. ^ Cierbide Martinena, Ricardo (1996). "Convivencia histórica de lenguas y culturas en Navarra". Caplletra: Revista Internacional de Filología (València (etc) : Institut Interuniversitari de Filologia Valenciana; Abadia de Montserrat) (20): 248. ISSN 0214-8188. 
  37. ^ Desparicion del Euskara por el norte y el este (in Spanish): En San Sebastián [...] se habla gascón desde el siglo XIV hasta el 1919
  38. ^ Ghigo, F. (1980). The Provençal speech of the Waldensian colonists of Valdese, North Carolina. Valdese: Historic Valdese Foundation. 
  39. ^ Holmes, U. T. (1934). "Waldensian speech in North Carolina". Zeitschrift für romanische Philologie 54: 500–513. 
  40. ^ Expatries-france.com, Selection Villes
  41. ^ http://www.mexicofrancia.org/articulos/p17.pdf
  42. ^ LaDepeche.fr
  43. ^ Pierre, Bec. (1995) La langue occitane, coll. Que sais-je? n° 1059, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France.
  44. ^ Arveiller, Raymond. (1967) Étude sur le parler de Monaco, Monaco: Comité National des Traditions Monégasques, p. ix.
  45. ^ Klinkenberg, Jean-Marie. Des langues romanes, Duculot, 1994, 1999, p. 228: "The amount of speakers is an estimated 10 to 12 millions... in any case never less than 6 millions."
  46. ^ Baker, Colin; and Sylvia Prys Jones. Encyclopedia of bilingualism and bilingual education, 1997, p. 402: "Of the 13 million inhabitants of the area where Occitan is spoken (comprising 31 départements) it is estimated that about half have a knowledge of one of the Occitan varieties."
  47. ^ Barbour, Stephen and Cathie Carmichael. Language and nationalism in Europe, 2000, p. 62: "Occitan is spoken in 31 départements, but even the EBLUL (1993: 15-16) is wary of statistics: 'There are no official data on the number of speakers. Of some 12 to 13 million inhabitants in the area, it is estimated 48 per cent understand Occitan, 28 per cent can speak it, about 9 per cent of the population use it on a daily basis, 13 per cent can read and 6 per cent can write the language.'"
  48. ^ Anglade 1921: La Langue d'Oc est parlée actuellement par douze ou quatorze millions de Français ("Occitan is now spoken by twelve or fourteen million French citizens").
  49. ^ Backer 1860, pp. 52, 54: parlée dans le Midi de la France par quatorze millions d'habitants ("spoken in the South of France by fourteen million inhabitants").
  50. ^ Gaussen 1927, p. 4: ...défendre une langue, qui est aujourd'hui la mère de la nôtre, parlée encore par plus de dix millions d'individus... ("protect a language, which is today the mother of ours, still spoken by more than ten million individuals")
  51. ^ http://robertlindsay.wordpress.com/2009/05/24/a-reclassification-of-the-occitan-language/
  52. ^ http://www.languegasconne.com/liens-et-partenaires/alliance-des-langues-doc/index.html
  53. ^ a b Wheeler, Max (1988), "Occitan", in Harris, Martin; Vincent, Nigel, The Romance Languages, New York: Oxford University Press, pp. 246–278 
  54. ^ Bec 1973.
  55. ^ a b Domergue Sumien (2006), La standardisation pluricentrique de l'occitan: nouvel enjeu sociolinguistique, développement du lexique et de la morphologie, Publications de l'Association Internationale d'Études Occitanes, Turnhout: Brepols
  56. ^ Jean-Pierre Juge (2001) Petit précis – Chronologie occitane – Histoire & civilisation, p. 25
  57. ^ a b c d e f "Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Article 1)". Omniglot.com. Retrieved 15 October 2009. 
  58. ^ "Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Article 1)". Omniglot.com. Retrieved 15 October 2009. 
  59. ^ a b Kremnitz 2002, pp. 109-111.
  60. ^ Philippe Blanchet, Louis Bayle, Pierre Bonnaud and Jean Lafitte
  61. ^ Kremnitz 2002, pp. 109–111.
  62. ^ Kremnitz, Georg (2003) "Un regard sociolinguistique sur les changements de la situation de l’occitan depuis 1968" in: Castano R., Guida, S., & Latella, F. (2003) (dir.) Scènes, évolutions, sort de la langue et de la littérature d’oc. Actes du VIIe congrès de l’Association Internationale d’Études Occitanes, Reggio di Calabria/Messina, 7-13 juillet 2002, Rome: Viella
  63. ^ For traditional Romance philology see:
    • Ronjat, Jules (1913), Essai de syntaxe des parlers provençaux modernes (in French), Macon: Protat, p. 12 : Mais les différences de phonétique, de morphologie, de syntaxe et de vocabulaire ne sont pas telles qu'une personne connaissant pratiquement à fond un de nos dialectes ne puisse converser dans ce dialecte avec une autre personne parlant un autre dialecte qu'elle possède pratiquement à fond. (But phonetical, morphological, syntactical and lexical differences are not such that a person quite perfectly fluent in one of our dialects would not be able to have a conversation with another person speaking another dialect with an equally perfect fluency).
    • Ronjat, Jules (1930), Grammaire historique des parlers provençaux modernes (in French), Montpellier: Société des langues romanes (Volume 1), pp. 1–32 .
    For a discussion of the unity of the Occitan diasystem in structural linguistics see Bec 1973, pp. 24–25.
  64. ^ Philippe Blanchet, Louis Bayle
  65. ^ The most emblematic and productive ones, Frédéric Mistral, Robert Lafont, and their followers (Théodore Aubanel, René Merle, Claude Barsotti, Philippe Gardy, Florian Vernet, Bernard Giély, Pierre Pessemesse...), and also the most important and historic Provençal cultural associations as CREO Provença, Felibrige and Parlaren (Assiso de la Lengo Nostro en Prouvènço, 2003)
  66. ^ Bec 1963, p. 46: The close ties between Gascon and others Occitan dialects have been demonstrated through a common diasystem.
  67. ^ PerNoste.com
  68. ^ Perso.orange.fr, Aranaram Au Patac
  69. ^ Lluis Fornés, see his thesis El Pensament Panoccitanista on the Oc-València site.
  70. ^ Modern loanword from Italian or Greek (Iordan, Dift., 145)
  71. ^ Avner Gerard Levy & Jacques Ajenstat: The Kodaxil Semantic Manifesto (2006), Section 10 – Modified Base64 / Kodaxil word length, representation, p. 9: "the English language, as claimed by Merriam-Webster, as well as the Occitan language – are estimated to comprise over 450,000 words in their basic form."
  72. ^ Bec, Pierre. (1995). La langue occitane, coll. Que sais-je? nr. 1059. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France [1st ed. 1963]
  73. ^ Gencat.net
  74. ^ Registro de Representantes by Lope de Rueda, in Spanish. Peirutón speaks a mix of Gascon and Catalan.

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