This article needs additional citations for verification .(April 2021)
|Native to|| France |
Official language in
|Catalonia (Spain) for Aranese|
Gascon speaking area
Gascon (English: // ; Gascon: [ɡasˈku(ŋ)] , French: [ɡaskɔ̃] ) is a Romance language spoken in southwest France. While often described as a dialect of Occitan, Gascon is considered by several authors to be a separate language altogether.
Gascon is mostly spoken in Gascony and Béarn in southwestern France (in parts of the following French départements: Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Hautes-Pyrénées, Landes, Gers, Gironde, Lot-et-Garonne, Haute-Garonne, and Ariège) and in the Aran Valley of Catalonia.
Aranese, a southern Gascon variety, is spoken in Catalonia and has been greatly influenced recently by Catalan and Spanish. Both these influences tend to differentiate it more and more from the dialects of Gascon spoken in France. Since the 2006 adoption of the new statute of Catalonia, Aranese is co-official with Catalan and Spanish in Catalonia (before, this status was valid for the Aran Valley only).
It was also one of the mother tongues of the English kings Richard the Lionheart and his younger brother John Lackland.
The majority of scholars think that Occitan constitutes a single language.
Some authors reject this opinion and even the name Occitan, thinking that there is a family of distinct lengas d'òc rather than dialects of a single language. Gascon, in particular, is distinct enough linguistically that it has been described as a language of its own.
The language spoken in Gascony before Roman rule was part of the Basque dialectal continuum (see Aquitanian language); the fact that the word 'Gascon' comes from the Latin root vasco/vasconem, which is the same root that gives us 'Basque', implies that the speakers identified themselves at some point as Basque. There is a proven Basque substrate in the development of Gascon.This explains some of the major differences that exist between Gascon and other Occitan dialects.
A typically Gascon feature that may arise from this substrate is the change from "f" to "h"[ citation needed ]. Where a word originally began with [f] in Latin, such as festa 'party/feast', this sound was weakened to aspirated [h] and then, in some areas, lost altogether; according to the substrate theory, this is due to the Basque dialects' lack of an equivalent /f/ phoneme, causing Gascon hèsta[ˈhɛsto] or [ˈɛsto]. A similar change took place in Spanish. Thus, Latin facere gives Spanish hacer ([aˈθer]) (or, in some parts of southwestern Andalusia, [haˈsɛɾ]).
Although some linguists deny the plausibility of the Basque substrate theory, it is widely assumed that Basque, the "Circumpyrenean" language (as put by Basque linguist Alfonso Irigoyen and defended by Koldo Mitxelena, 1982), is the underlying language spreading around the Pyrenees onto the banks of the Garonne River, maybe as far east as the Mediterranean in Roman times (niska cited by Joan Coromines as the name of each nymph taking care of the Roman spa Arles de Tech in Roussillon, etc.). : 250–251 Basque gradually eroded across Gascony in the High Middle Ages (Basques from the Val d'Aran cited still circa 1000), with vulgar Latin and Basque interacting and mingling, but eventually with the former replacing the latter north of the east and middle Pyrenees and developing into Gascon. : 250, 255
However, modern Basque has had lexical influence from Gascon in words like beira ("glass"), which is also seen in Portuguese. One way for the introduction of Gascon influence into Basque came about through language contact in bordering areas of the Northern Basque Country, acting as adstrate. The other one takes place since the 11th century over the coastal fringe of Gipuzkoa extending from Hondarribia to San Sebastian, where Gascon was spoken up to the early 18th century and often used in formal documents until the 16th century, with evidence of its continued occurrence in Pasaia in the 1870s. [ better source needed ] A minor focus of influence was the Way of St James and the establishment of ethnic boroughs in several towns based on the privileges bestowed on the Francs by the Kingdom of Navarre from the 12th to the early 14th centuries, but the variant spoken and used in written records is mainly the Occitan of Toulouse.[ citation needed ]
The énonciatif (Occitan: enunciatiu) system of Gascon, a system that is more colloquial than characteristic of normative written Gascon and governs the use of certain preverbal particles (including the sometimes emphatic affirimative que, the occasionally mitigating or dubitative e, the exclamatory be, and the even more emphatic ja/ye, and the "polite" se) has also been attributed to the Basque substrate.
Gascon is divided into three varieties or dialect sub-groups:
Béarnais, the official language when Béarn was an independent state, does not correspond to a unified language: the three forms of Gascon are spoken in Béarn (in the south, Pyrenean Gascon, in the center and in the east, Eastern Gascon; to the north-west, Western Gascon).
|French||Landese||Béarnese and Bigourdan||Aranese||Commingois and Couseranais||Interior Gascon||Bazadais and High-Landese||Bordelese|
|Affirmation: He is going||Il y va||Qu' i va.||Que i va.||I va.||Que i va.||Que i va.||(Qu’) i va/vai.||I vai.|
|Negation: He wasn't listening to him||Il ne l’écoutait pas||Ne l’escotèva pas||Non / ne l’escotava pas||Non la escotaua||Non l’escotava cap||Ne l’escotava pas||(Ne) l’escotèva pas||Ne l'escotava pas/briga|
|Plural formation: the young men – the young women||Les jeunes hommes – les jeunes filles||Los gojats – las gojatas||Eths / los gojats – eras / las gojatas||Es gojats – es gojates||Eths gojats – eras gojatas||Los gojats – las gojatas||Los gojats – las gojatas||Los gojats – las dònas/gojas|
A poll conducted in Béarn in 1982 indicated that 51% of the population could speak Gascon, 70% understood it, and 85% expressed a favourable opinion regarding the protection of the language.However, use of the language has declined dramatically over recent years as a result of the Francization taking place during the last centuries, as Gascon is rarely transmitted to young generations any longer (outside of schools, such as the Calandretas).
By April 2011, the Endangered Languages Project estimated that there were only 250,000 native speakers of the language.
The usual term for Gascon is "patois", a word designating in France a non-official and usually devaluated dialect (such as Gallo) or language (such as Occitan), regardless of the concerned region.[ citation needed ] It is mainly in Béarn that the population uses concurrently the term "Béarnais" to designate its Gascon forms. This is because of the political past of Béarn, which was independent and then part of a sovereign state (the shrinking Kingdom of Navarre) from 1347 to 1620.
In fact, there is no unified Béarnais dialect, as the language differs considerably throughout the province. Many of the differences in pronunciation can be divided into east, west, and south (the mountainous regions). For example, an 'a' at the end of words is pronounced "ah" in the west, "o" in the east, and "œ" in the south. Because of Béarn's specific political past, Béarnais has been distinguished from Gascon since the 16th century, not for linguistic reasons.
Probably as a consequence of the linguistic continuum of occidental Romania and the French influence over the Hispanic Mark on medieval times, shared similar and singular features are noticeable between Gascon and other Latin languages on the other side of the frontier: Aragonese and ultraoccidental Catalan (Catalan of La Franja). Gascon is also (with Spanish, Navarro-Aragonese and French) one of the Romance influences in Basque language.
Occitan, also known as lenga d'òc by its native speakers, is a Romance language spoken in Southern France, Monaco, Italy's Occitan Valleys, and Catalonia's Val d'Aran; collectively, these regions are sometimes referred to as Occitania. It is also spoken in South Italy (Calabria) in a linguistic enclave of Cosenza area. Some include Catalan in Occitan, as the distance between this language and some Occitan dialects is similar to the distance among different Occitan dialects. Catalan was considered a dialect of Occitan until the end of the 19th century and still today remains its closest relative.
Gascony was a province of southwestern France that was part of the "Province of Guyenne and Gascony" prior to the French Revolution. The region is vaguely defined, and the distinction between Guyenne and Gascony is unclear; by some they are seen to overlap, while others consider Gascony a part of Guyenne. Most definitions put Gascony east and south of Bordeaux.
Aran is an administrative entity in Lleida, Catalonia, Spain, consisting of the Aran Valley, 620.47 square kilometres (239.56 sq mi) in area, in the Pyrenees mountains, in the northwestern part of the province of Lleida.
Pyrénées-Atlantiques is a department in the southwest corner of France and of the region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine. Named after the Pyrenees mountain range and the Atlantic Ocean, it covers the French Basque Country and the Béarn. Its prefecture is Pau. In 2017, it had a population of 677,309.
Ribagorçan is a number of Romance dialects spoken in the modern territories of the medieval County of Ribagorza, in northern Spain.
Ribagorça or Ribagorza is a historical and natural region of Aragon and Catalonia. Located in the Pre-Pyrenees and Pyrenees area, most of its territory is mountainous. The region has been steadily losing population since mid 20th century.
Midi-Pyrénées is a former administrative region of France. Since 1 January 2016, it has been part of the new region Occitanie. It was the largest region of Metropolitan France by area, larger than the Netherlands or Denmark.
The Iberian Romance, Ibero-Romance or sometimes Iberian languages are a group of Romance languages that developed on the Iberian Peninsula, an area consisting primarily of Spain, Portugal, Gibraltar and Andorra, and in southern France which are today more commonly separated into West Iberian and Occitano-Romance language groups.
Aranese is a standardized form of the Pyrenean Gascon variety of the Occitan language spoken in the Val d'Aran, in northwestern Catalonia close to the Spanish border with France, where it is one of the three official languages beside Catalan and Spanish. In 2010, it was declared the third official language in Catalonia by the Parliament of Catalonia.
Occitania is the historical region in Western and Southern Europe where Occitan was historically the main language spoken, and where it is sometimes still used, for the most part as a second language. This cultural area roughly encompasses the southern third of France, as well as part of Spain, Monaco, and smaller parts of Italy. Occitania has been recognized as a linguistic and cultural concept since the Middle Ages, but has never been a legal nor a political entity under this name, although the territory was united in Roman times as the Seven Provinces and in the Early Middle Ages.
The Aquitanian people lived in the area of present-day southern Nouvelle-Aquitaine and southwestern Midi-Pyrénées, France - in the region between the Pyrenees, the Atlantic ocean, and the Garonne, in present-day southwestern France in the 1st century BCE. The Romans, dubbed this region Gallia Aquitania. Classical authors such as Julius Caesar and Strabo clearly distinguish the Aquitani from the other peoples of Gaul, and note their similarity to others in the Iberian Peninsula.
The French Basque Country, or Northern Basque Country is a region lying on the west of the French department of the Pyrénées-Atlantiques. Since 1 January 2017, it constitutes the Basque Municipal Community presided over by Jean-René Etchegaray.
The languages of Spain, or Spanish languages, are the languages spoken in Spain.
Béarnese is a dialect of Gascon spoken in Béarn. As a written language, it benefited from the fact that Béarn was an independent state from the mid-14th century to 1620. Béarnese was used in legal and administrative documents long after most other Gascon provinces were incorporated into France..
Iberian languages is a generic term for the languages currently or formerly spoken in the Iberian Peninsula.
The Occitano-Romance or Gallo-Narbonnese, or rarely East Iberian, is a branch of the Romance language group that encompasses the Catalan/Valencian, Occitan languages spoken in parts of southern France and northeastern Spain.
The Viscounty, later Principalityof Béarn was a medieval lordship in the far south of France, part of the Duchy of Gascony from the late ninth century. In 1347, the viscount declared Béarn an independent principality without feudal obligations. It later entered a personal union with the Kingdom of Navarre in 1479 and with France in 1589. In 1620, the prince formally incorporated Béarn as a province of France.
There are four languages with official status in Catalonia : Catalan; Spanish- which is official throughout Spain; Aranese, a dialect of Occitan spoken in the Aran Valley; and Catalan Sign Language. Many other languages are spoken in Catalonia as a result of recent immigration from all over the world.
Occitanie, Occitany or Occitania, is the southernmost administrative region of metropolitan France excluding Corsica, created on 1 January 2016 from the former regions of Languedoc-Roussillon and Midi-Pyrénées. The Council of State approved Occitanie as the new name of the region on 28 September 2016, coming into effect on 30 September 2016.
There is a variety of Vernacular languages spoken in Spain. Spanish, the official language in the entire country, is the predominant native language in almost all of the autonomous communities in Spain. Six of the seventeen autonomous communities in Spain have other co-official languages in addition to Spanish. Bilingualism in different degrees and in distinct communicative situations between Spanish and another language is a habitual practice for many of the Spanish people who reside in one of these autonomous communities.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Gascon language .|