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Piedmontese (autonym: or , in it, piemontese) is a language spoken by some 2,000,000 people mostly in
Piedmont Piedmont ( ; it, Piemonte, ; Piedmontese language, Piedmontese, Lombard language, Lombard, Occitan language, Occitan and frp, Piemont, , , french: Piémont) is a region in northwest Italy, one of the regions of Italy, 20 regions of the country. ...

Piedmont
, northwestern region of
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of Italian Peninsula, a peninsula delimited by the Alps and List of islands of Italy, several islands surrounding it, whose ...

Italy
. Although considered by many linguists a separate
language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the ...

language
, in Italy it is often regarded as an Italian dialect. It is linguistically included in the
Gallo-Italic languages The Gallo-Italic, Gallo-Italian, Gallo-Cisalpine or simply Cisalpine languages constitute the majority of the Romance languages Languages of Italy#Northern Italy, of northern Italy. They are Piedmontese language, Piedmontese, Lombard language, Lomb ...

Gallo-Italic languages
group of
Northern Italy Northern Italy ( it, Italia settentrionale, it, Nord Italia, label=none, it, Alta Italia, label=none or just it, Nord, label=none) is a geographical and cultural region In geography, regions are areas that are broadly divided by physical cha ...
(with
Lombard The term Lombard refers to members of or things related to Lombardy (man) it, Lombarda (woman) lmo, Lombard (man) lmo, Lombarda (woman) , population_note = , population_blank1_title = , population_blank1 ...

Lombard
, Emilian, Ligurian and Romagnolo), which would make it part of the wider western group of Romance languages, which also includes
French
French
,
Occitan Occitan (; oc, occitan, link=no ,), also known as ''lenga d'òc'' (; french: langue d'oc) by its native speakers, is a Romance language The Romance languages, less commonly Latin or Neo-Latin languages, are the modern languages that evolve ...
, and
Catalan Catalan may refer to: Catalonia From, or related to Catalonia: * Catalan language, a Romance language * Catalans, an ethnic group formed by the people from, or with origins in, Catalonia * Països Catalans, territories where Catalan is spoken * C ...
. It is spoken in the core of
Piedmont Piedmont ( ; it, Piemonte, ; Piedmontese language, Piedmontese, Lombard language, Lombard, Occitan language, Occitan and frp, Piemont, , , french: Piémont) is a region in northwest Italy, one of the regions of Italy, 20 regions of the country. ...

Piedmont
, in northwestern
Liguria it, Ligure , population_note = , population_blank1_title = , population_blank1 = , demographics_type1 = , demographics1_footnotes = , demographics1_title1 = , demographics1_info1 = , demographics1_title2 ...

Liguria
, near
Savona Savona (; local lij, Sann-a , lij, label=Genoese Genoese may refer to: * a person from Genoa * Genoese dialect, a dialect of the Ligurian language * Republic of Genoa (–1805), a former state in Liguria See also * Genovese, a surname * ...

Savona
and in
Lombardy Lombardy ( ; it, Lombardia ; lmo, Lombardia, , ) is one of the twenty administrative regions of Italy, in the Northwest Italy, northwest of the country, with an area of . About 10 million people live in Lombardy, forming more than one-sixth of It ...
(some municipalities in the westernmost part of
Lomellina The Lomellina ( Western Lombard: Ümlína/Lümelína) is a geographical and historical area in the Po Valley The Po Valley, Po Plain, Plain of the Po, or Padan Plain ( it, Pianura Padana , or ''Val Padana'') is a major geographical feature of ...
near
Pavia Pavia (, , , ; la, Ticinum; Medieval Latin: ) is a town and comune of south-western Lombardy in northern Italy, south of Milan on the lower Ticino river near its confluence with the Po River, Po. It has a population of c. 73,086. The city was ...

Pavia
). It has some support from the
Piedmont Piedmont ( ; it, Piemonte, ; Piedmontese language, Piedmontese, Lombard language, Lombard, Occitan language, Occitan and frp, Piemont, , , french: Piémont) is a region in northwest Italy, one of the regions of Italy, 20 regions of the country. ...

Piedmont
regional government but is considered a dialect rather than a separate language by the Italian central government. Due to the
Italian diaspora The Italian diaspora is the large-scale emigration of Italians Italians ( it, italiani ) are a Romance peoples, Romance Ethnic groups in Europe, ethnic group and nation native to the Italian geographical region and its neighboring insular terr ...
Piedmontese has spread in the
Argentinian Argentines (also known as Argentinians or Argentineans; es, Grammatical gender, masculine argentinos; Grammatical gender, feminine ') are people identified with the country of Argentina. This connection may be residential, legal, historical ...

Argentinian
Pampas The Pampas (from the qu, pampa, meaning "plain") are fertile South America South America is a continent A continent is one of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any str ...

Pampas
, where many immigrants from Piedmont settled. The Piedmontese language is also spoken in some states of Brazil, as well as the
Venetian language Venetian or Venetan ( or ), is a Romance language The Romance languages, less commonly Latin or Neo-Latin languages, are the modern languages that evolved from Vulgar Latin between the third and eighth centuries. They are a subgroup ...
.


History

The first documents in the Piedmontese language were written in the 12th century, the ''sermones subalpini'', when it was extremely close to
Occitan Occitan (; oc, occitan, link=no ,), also known as ''lenga d'òc'' (; french: langue d'oc) by its native speakers, is a Romance language The Romance languages, less commonly Latin or Neo-Latin languages, are the modern languages that evol ...
. Literary Piedmontese developed in the 17th and 18th centuries, but it did not gain literary esteem comparable to that of French or Italian, other
language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the ...

language
s used in Piedmont. Nevertheless,
literature Literature broadly is any collection of written Writing is a medium of human communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share") is the act of developing Semantics, meaning among Subject (philosophy), entitie ...

literature
in Piedmontese has never ceased to be produced: it includes
poetry Poetry (derived from the Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its popula ...

poetry
,
theatre Theatre or theater is a collaborative form of performing art that uses live performers, usually actor, actors or actresses, to present the experience of a real or imagined event before a live audience in a specific place, often a stage. The p ...

theatre
pieces,
novel A novel is a relatively long work of narrative A narrative, story or tale is any account of a series of related events or experiences, whether nonfiction Nonfiction (also spelled non-fiction) is any document A document is a written ...

novel
s, and scientific work.


Current status

In 2004, Piedmontese was recognised as Piedmont's regional language by the regional parliament,''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 although the Italian government has not yet recognised it as such. In theory, it is now supposed to be taught to children in school, 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.
Knowledge and Usage of the Piedmontese Language in Turin and its Province
'', 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 .
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,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.
assimil.it
/ref> IRES Piemonte and 3 million speakers (EthnologueLewis, M. Paul (ed.), 2009. Ethnologue: Languages of the World, Sixteenth edition. Dallas, Tex.: SIL Internationa
ISO 639-3, pms (Piemontese)
Retrieved 13 June 2012
) 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 divided into three major groups * Western which include the dialects of
Turin Turin ( , Piedmontese Piedmontese (autonym: or , in it, piemontese) is a language spoken by some 700,000 people mostly in Piedmont it, Piemontese , population_note = , population_blank1_title = , population_blank1 = ...

Turin
and
Cuneo Cuneo (; pms, Coni ; oc, Coni/Couni ; french: Coni ) is a city and ''comune The (; plural: ) is a basic Administrative division, constituent entity of Italy, roughly equivalent to a township or municipality. Importance and function Th ...

Cuneo
. * Eastern which in turn is divided into south-eastern (Astigiano, Roero, Monregalese, High Montferrat, Langarolo, Alessandrino) and north-eastern (Low Montferrat, Biellese, Vercellese, Valsesiano). * Canevese, spoken in the
Canavese Canavese ( French: ''Canavais''; Piedmontese: ''Canavèis'') is a subalpine geographical and historical area of North-West Italy which lies today within the Metropolitan City of Turin in Piedmont it, Piemontese , population_note = , ...
region in north-western Piedmont. The variants can be detected in the variation of the accent and variation of words. It is sometimes difficult to understand a person that speaks a different Piedmontese from the one you are used to, as the words or accents are not the same.


Eastern and western group

Eastern Piedmontese is more phonological evolved than its western counterpart. The words that in the west end with jt, jd or t in the east end with ʒe/o .html"_;"title="ʃ
">ʃ
for_example_the_westerns_,_,_and__(_milk,_all_and_old)_in_the_east_are_,__and_. Eastern_piedmontese_has__as_allophone_of__at_the_end_of_word,_both_at_the_end_of_infinitive_time_of_the_verb,_like_in_to_read_and_to_be_(''western''_,__''vs''._eastern_,_)_and_at_words_
.html"_;"title="ʃ
">ʃ
for_example_the_westerns_,_,_and__(_milk,_all_and_old)_in_the_east_are_,__and_. Eastern_piedmontese_has__as_allophone_of__at_the_end_of_word,_both_at_the_end_of_infinitive_time_of_the_verb,_like_in_to_read_and_to_be_(''western''_,__''vs''._eastern_,_)_and_at_words_Grammatical_gender">feminine_ Femininity_(also_called_womanliness_or_girlishness)_is_a_set_of_attributes,_behaviors,_and_roles_generally_associated_with_women A_woman_is_an_adult_female Female_(symbol:_♀)_is_the_sex_of_an_organism_that_produces_the_large_non-mob_...
_
.html"_;"title="ʃ
">ʃ
for_example_the_westerns_,_,_and__(_milk,_all_and_old)_in_the_east_are_,__and_. Eastern_piedmontese_has__as_allophone_of__at_the_end_of_word,_both_at_the_end_of_infinitive_time_of_the_verb,_like_in_to_read_and_to_be_(''western''_,__''vs''._eastern_,_)_and_at_words_Grammatical_gender">feminine_ Femininity_(also_called_womanliness_or_girlishness)_is_a_set_of_attributes,_behaviors,_and_roles_generally_associated_with_women A_woman_is_an_adult_female Female_(symbol:_♀)_is_the_sex_of_an_organism_that_produces_the_large_non-mob_...
_Plural_(grammar)">plural_ The_plural_(sometimes_abbreviated An_abbreviation_(from_Latin_''brevis'',_meaning_''short'')_is_a_shortened_form_of_a_word_or_phrase,_by_any_method._It_may_consist_of_a_group_of_letters,_or_words_taken_from_the_full_version_of_the_word_or_ph_...
_Grammatical_gender.html" "title="Plural_(grammar).html" "title="Grammatical_gender.html" "title="ʃ"_>.html" ;"title="ʃ
[tʃ
">ʃ
[tʃ
for example the westerns , , and ( milk, all and old) in the east are , and . Eastern piedmontese has as allophone of at the end of word, both at the end of infinitive time of the verb, like in to read and to be (''western'' , ''vs''. eastern , ) and at words Grammatical gender">feminine Femininity (also called womanliness or girlishness) is a set of attributes, behaviors, and roles generally associated with women A woman is an adult female Female (symbol: ♀) is the sex of an organism that produces the large non-mob ...
Plural (grammar)">plural The plural (sometimes abbreviated An abbreviation (from Latin ''brevis'', meaning ''short'') is a shortened form of a word or phrase, by any method. It may consist of a group of letters, or words taken from the full version of the word or ph ...
Grammatical gender">gender Gender is the range of characteristics pertaining to, and differentiating between femininity Femininity (also called womanliness or girlishness) is a set of attributes, behaviors, and roles generally associated with women A woman is ...
, altought this development 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 conjugation of the present simple of the irregular verbs: dé, andé, sté (to give, to go, to stay).


Phonology


Consonants

is realized as labio-velar in the word-final position as well as between and .


Vowels

Allophones of // are [] in stressed syllables.


Alphabet

Piedmontese is written with a modified Latin alphabet. The letters, along with their International Phonetic Alphabet, IPA equivalent, are shown in the table below. Certain
digraphs Digraph may refer to: * Digraph (orthography) A digraph or digram (from the el, δίς ', "double" and ', "to write") is a pair of characters used in the orthography An orthography is a set of conventions for writing Writing is a m ...
are used to regularly represent specific sounds as shown below. All other combinations of letters are pronounced as written.
Grave accent The grave accent ( ` ) ( or ) is a diacritical A diacritic (also diacritical mark, diacritical point, diacritical sign, or accent) is a glyph added to a letter (alphabet), letter or to a basic glyph. The term derives from th ...

Grave accent
marks stress (except for ''o'' which is marked by an
acute Acute may refer to: Science and technology * Acute angle ** Acute triangle ** Acute, a leaf shape in the glossary of leaf morphology#acute, glossary of leaf morphology * Acute (medicine), a disease that it is of short duration and of recent onset. ...

acute
to distinguish it from ''ò'') and breaks diphthongs, so ''ua'' and ''uà'' are , but ''ùa'' is pronounced separately, .


Numbers


Characteristics

Some of the characteristics of the Piedmontese language are: # The presence of
clitic In morphology and syntax In linguistics, syntax () is the set of rules, principles, and processes that govern the structure of Sentence (linguistics), sentences (sentence structure) in a given Natural language, language, usually including word ...
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. # 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'). # The interrogative form, which adds an enclitic interrogative particle at the end of the verbal form (''Veus-to…?'' 'Do you want to...?']) # The absence of ordinal numerals higher than 'sixth', so that 'seventh' is ''col che a fà set'' 'the one which makes seven'. # 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 language, Portuguese); ''òj'' (from Latin ''hoc est'', as in Occitan, or maybe ''hoc illud'', as in
Franco-Provençal Franco-Provençal (also Francoprovençal, Patois, Gaga, Savoyard, Arpitan or Romand) is a dialect group within Gallo-Romance languages, Gallo-Romance originally spoken in east-central France, western Switzerland and northwestern Italy. Franco ...
, French and Old
Catalan Catalan may refer to: Catalonia From, or related to Catalonia: * Catalan language, a Romance language * Catalans, an ethnic group formed by the people from, or with origins in, Catalonia * Països Catalans, territories where Catalan is spoken * C ...
and
Occitan Occitan (; oc, occitan, link=no ,), also known as ''lenga d'òc'' (; french: langue d'oc) by its native speakers, is a Romance language The Romance languages, less commonly Latin or Neo-Latin languages, are the modern languages that evol ...
). # The absence of the
voiceless postalveolar fricative A voiceless postalveolar fricative is a type of consonant In articulatory phonetics, a consonant is a speech sound that is articulated with complete or partial closure of the vocal tract. Examples are , pronounced with the lips; , pronounced with ...
(like the ''sh'' in English ''sheep''), for which an alveolar S sound (as in English ''sun'') is usually substituted. # The existence of an S-C combination pronounced # The existence of a
velar nasal The voiced velar nasal, also known as agma, from the Greek word for 'fragment', is a type of consonant In articulatory phonetics The field of articulatory phonetics is a subfield of phonetics that studies articulation and ways that humans ...

velar nasal
(like the ''ng'' in English ''going''), which usually precedes a vowel, as in ''lun-a'' 'moon'. # The existence of the third Piedmontese vowel Ë, which is very short (close to the vowel in English ''sir''). # The absence of the phonological contrast that exists in Italian between short (single) and long (
double Double may refer to: * Look-alike, a person who closely resembles another person * Double (filmmaking), someone who substitutes for the credited actor of a character * Doppelgänger, ghostly double of a living person * Polish Enigma doubles, repl ...
) consonants, for example, Italian ''fata'' 'fairy' and ''fatta'' 'done (F)'. # The existence of a
prosthetic In medicine, a prosthesis (plural: prostheses; from Ancient Greek ''prosthesis'', "addition, application, attachment") or prosthetic implant (medicine), implant is an artificial device that replaces a missing body part, which may be lost thr ...
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 Frankish may refer to: * Franks The Franks ( la, Franci or ) were a group of Germanic peoples The historical Germanic peoples (from lat, Germani) are a category of ancient northern European tribes, first mentioned by Graeco-Roman author ...

Frankish
or
Lombard The term Lombard refers to members of or things related to Lombardy (man) it, Lombarda (woman) lmo, Lombard (man) lmo, Lombarda (woman) , population_note = , population_blank1_title = , population_blank1 ...
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 France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses ...

France
and from Italian. A variety of Piedmontese was Judeo-Piedmontese, a dialect spoken by the Piedmontese
Jews Jews ( he, יְהוּדִים ISO 259-2 ISO The International Organization for Standardization (ISO ) is an international standard An international standard is a technical standard A technical standard is an established norm (social), ...

Jews
until the
Second World War World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
.


Lexical comparison

Lexical comparison with other Romance languages and English:


References


Further reading

*


External links

*
Cultural Association "Nòste Rèis"
features online Piedmontese courses for Italian, French, English, and Spanish speakers with drills and tests
Piemunteis.it - Online resources about piedmontese language: poems, studies, audio, free booksPiemontese basic lexicon (several dialects) at the Global Lexicostatistical Database
{{DEFAULTSORT:Piedmontese Language Gallo-Italic languages Languages of Piedmont