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He obtained a doctorate at the University of Vienna and was heavily influenced by his teacher Wilhelm Meyer-Lubke, as well as by certain theories of the Italian philosopher Benedetto Croce and the German linguist Karl Vossler. He later also studied with Jules L. Gilliéron in Paris.
In 1907 he became extraordinary professor of comparative history of classical and neo-Latin languages in Pisa, but soon after that he moved to the University of Turin where he taught the same subjects in the Faculty of Letters until his death.
His study on the Dalmatian language, Das Dalmatische (2 vol. 1906) is the only known complete description of the language, which is now extinct. He wrote it in Italian in two volumes, and later published a translation in German. However, the original Italian text is now lost and only in 2000 was an Italian translation from the German published. Bartoli used data gathered in 1897 from the last speaker of Dalmatian, Tuone Udaina, who was killed in an explosives accident on June 10, 1898. With his death, the language became extinct.
He also wrote Introduzione alla neolinguistica ("Introduction to neolinguistics", 1925) and Saggi di linguistica spaziale ("Essays in spatial linguistics", 1945) and was the teacher of Antonio Gramsci.
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