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|Native to||Italy, San Marino|
(Province of Ravenna, Province of Rimini, Province of Forlì-Cesena, part of the Province of Ferrara and around Imola in the Province of Bologna)
Marche (part of the Province of Pesaro and Urbino)
Tuscany (a few communes in the Province of Florence)
Outside of Italy:
|Ethnicity||1.1 million (2008)|
|ca. 430,000, assuming Romagnol and Emiliano retained at same rate (2006)|
Romagnol is a dialect of Emiliano-Romagnolo, a Romance language, mostly spoken in Romagna (Northern Italy, part of the Emilia-Romagna region in Italy), Republic of San Marino, northern Marche, and a few communes in northern Tuscany.
Romagnol, like other Romance languages, is descended from the Vulgar Latin spoken in the Roman Empire. It evolved alongside the Tuscan, which would form the basis of Standard Italian. Although Romagnol is often described as a dialect, it is not a variant of or descended from Italian.
What distinguishes Romagnol from other languages of Northern Italy is a complex set of historical, geographical and cultural factors:
- the Byzantine Greek heritage in the 6th, 7th and 8th centuries;
- a different exposure to Germanic influence (before and after the Migration Period);
- the different features of Latin spoken in the Italian peninsula north and south of the Northern Apennines;
- the existence of a "Celtic background" which, according to historical linguist Graziadio Isaia Ascoli (19th century), formed a substrate for all languages north of the Apennine Mountains (the only notable exception being the Venetian language).
West of Romagna the Emilian language is spoken. The border with Emilian-speaking areas is the Sillaro river, which runs 25 km East from Bologna: to the west of (Castel San Pietro Terme) Emilian is spoken, to the East, in Imola, the language is Romagnol. In Emilia-Romagna, Emilian is spoken in all the rest of the region moving from the Sillaro river to the west, up to Piacenza.
The Reno River is the border between Romagnol and the dialect of Ferrara. Romagnol is spoken also in some villages northwards of the Reno river, such as Argenta, Emilia–Romagna and Filo, where people of Romagnol origin live alongside people of Ferrarese origin. Ferrara goes into Emilian language territory.
16th to 19th century
The first Romagnol poem dates back to the end of 16th century: E Pvlon matt. Cantlena aroica (Mad Nap), a mock-heroic poem based on Orlando Furioso and written by an anonymous author from San Vittore di Cesena. The original poem comprised twelve cantos, of which only the first four survived (1848 lines).
The 20th century saw a flourishing of Romagnol literature. Theatrical plays, poems and books of a high quality were produced. Some of the best known Romagnol authors are:
- Raffaello Baldini, who won in 1988 the "Premio Viareggio" and in 1995 the "Premio Bagutta"
- Tonino Guerra (1920–2012), the main contemporary Romagnol
- Olindo Guerrini, with "Sonetti romagnoli"
- Aldo Spallicci
Romagnol has some features that make it different from other Gallo-Italic languages:
- A very large number of vowels (about 20, in comparison the 7 in Standard Italian).
- A strong importance of consonants in the word. Some words that in Latin were trisyllabic or tetrasyllabic (where 'u' is without stress) are reduced in Romagnol to monosyllables. The atonic syllable(s) is cut off:
|IPA symbol||Orthography||Example in Romagnol||IPA pronunciation||English meaning|
|ɛɐ̯~ɛː||ë||bël||[ˈbɛɐ̯l]||"nice" (masculine, singular)|
|ɛ~e̞||è||bèll||[ˈbe̞lː]||"nice" (masculine, plural)|
|uː~ʊu̯||u, ù||dùr||[ˈd̪uːr]||"hard" (masculin, singular)|
|Nasal||m (m)||n (n)||ɲ (gn)||(ŋ)|
|Stop||p (p) b (b)||t (t) d (d)||k (c,ch) ɡ (g,gh)|
|Affricate||tʃ (c) dʒ (g)|
|Fricative||f (f) v (v)||θ (z) ð (ẓ)||ʂ (s) ʐ (ş)|
|For a list of words relating to Romagnol dialect, see the Romagnol dialect category of words in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|
- Anonimo, Pvlon Matt, Cantléna aroica, (1591) (edited by Gaspare Bagli), Bologna: Zanichelli, 1887
- Ercolani, L., Vocabolario romagnolo-italiano (Ravenna, 1963).
- Morri, A., Vocabolario romagnolo-italiano (Ravenna, 1970 - riprinted from the original, Faenza, 1840).
- Polloni, A., Toponomastica romagnola (Olschki, 1966).
- Gregor, D. B., Romagnol. Language and Literature (1971)
- Schurr, F., Romagnolische Mundarten (Sitz.d.kais.Ak.d.W., Vienna, 1917).
- Schurr, F., Romagnolische Dialektstudien, Lautlehre (1918); Lebende Mundarten (1919).
- Schurr, F., «II Plaustro», December 31, 1911 (Anno 1, n. 6), Forlì.
- La lingua italiana, i dialetti e le lingue straniere Anno 2006
- Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Romagnol". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
|Romagnol dialect test of Wikipedia at Wikimedia Incubator|