Neapolitan language

Last updated

Native to Italy
Region Abruzzo, Apulia, Basilicata, Calabria, Campania, Lazio, Marche, Molise
Native speakers
5.7 million (2002) [1]
Language codes
ISO 639-2 nap
ISO 639-3 nap
Glottolog neap1235  Continental Southern Italian [2]
sout3126  South Lucanian = (Vd) Lausberg [3]
Lenguas centromeridionales.png
Neapolitan as part of the centro-southern Italian languages. Purple represents Neapolitan.
Neapolitan languages-it.svg
Neapolitan dialects

Neapolitan (autonym: (’o n)napulitano [(o n)napuliˈtɑːnə] ; Italian : napoletano) is a Romance language of the Italo-Dalmatian group spoken across much of southern Italy, except for southern Calabria, southern Apulia, and Sicily, [4] [5] [6] and spoken in a small part of central Italy (the province of Ascoli Piceno in the Marche). It is not named specifically after the city of Naples,[ citation needed ] but rather the homonymous Kingdom that once covered most of the area, and of which the city was the capital. On October 14, 2008, a law by the Region of Campania stated that Neapolitan was to be protected. [7]


While the term "Neapolitan language" is used in this article to refer to the language group of related dialects found in southern continental Italy, it may also refer more specifically to the dialect of the Neapolitan language spoken in the Naples area or in Campania. In fact, in a colloquial or non-academic or non-linguist context, “Neapolitan language”, napulitano, or napoletano generally refers specifically to the variety of the language spoken in Naples and the surrounding area; however, this variety is usually mutually intelligible with other related “Neapolitan language” varieties throughout Southern Italy.[ citation needed ]


A young man speaking Neapolitan.

The Neapolitan dialects are distributed throughout most of continental southern Italy, historically united during the Kingdom of Naples and the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, specifically southern Lazio (Gaeta and Sora districts), southern Marche, Abruzzo, Molise, Basilicata, Campania (Naples), northern and central Apulia, and northernmost Calabria. The dialects are part of a varied dialect continuum, so the varieties in southern Lazio, Marche, Abruzzo, Molise, Apulia, Lucania and Calabria can typically be recognizable as regional groups of dialects. In western Abruzzo and Lazio the dialects give way to Central Italian dialects such as Romanesco. In central Calabria and southern Apulia, the dialects give way to the Sicilian language. Largely due to massive southern Italian migration in the late 19th century and early 20th century, there are also numbers of speakers in Italian diaspora communities in the United States, Canada, Australia, Brazil, Argentina and Venezuela. However, in the United States traditional Neapolitan has had considerable contact with English, and is significantly different from contemporary Neapolitan spoken in Naples. English words are often used in place of Neapolitan words, especially among second-generation speakers. On the other hand, the effect on Neapolitan in Italy has been similar due to displacement by Standard Italian.

The following dialects constitute Neapolitan; numbers refer to the map: [8]

  1. Abruzzese and Southern Marchigiano:
    Ia. Southern Marchigiano (Ascoli Piceno).
    Ib. Teramano (province of Teramo; northern province of Pescara: Atri, Abruzzo).
    Ic. Abruzzese Eastern Adriatico (Southern province of Pescara: Penne, Francavilla al Mare; province of Chieti).
    Id. Western Abruzzese (southern part of province of L'Aquila: Marsica, Avezzano, Pescina, Sulmona, Pescasseroli, Roccaraso).
  2. Molisan (Molise)
  3. Apulian (Pugliese):
    IIIa. Dauno (western province of Foggia: Foggia, Bovino).
    IIIb. Garganico (eastern province of Foggia: Gargano ).
    IIIc. Barese (province of Bari; western province of Taranto (includes Tarantino dialect); and part of the western province of Brindisi).
  4. Campanian (Campania),
    IVa. Southern Laziale (southern part of province of Frosinone: Sora, Lazio, Cassino; southern part of Province of Latina: Gaeta, Formia).
    IVb. Neapolitan (as in the language spoken in Naples) (Neapolitan proper: Naples and the Gulf of Naples).
    IVc. Irpino (province of Avellino).
    IVd. Cilentano (southern part of province of Salerno: Vallo della Lucania).
  5. Lucanian and Northern Calabrian:
    Va. Northwestern Lucanian (northern province of Potenza: Potenza, Melfi).
    Vb. Northeastern Lucanian (province of Matera: Matera).
    Vc. Central Lucanian (province of Potenza: Lagonegro, Pisticci, Laurenzana).
    Vd. Southern Lucanian. The "Lausberg Area"; archaic forms of Lucanian with Sardinian vocalism [ clarification needed ] (described in Lausberg 1939). It lies between Calabria and Basilicata (Chiaromonte, Oriolo).[ citation needed ]
    Ve. Cosentian (province of Cosenza: Rossano, Diamante, Castrovillari). With transitional dialects to south of Cosenza, where they give way to Sicilian group dialects.

The southernmost regions of Italy—most of Calabria and southern Apulia, as well as Sicily—are home to Sicilian rather than Neapolitan.


Giambattista Basile (1566-1632), author of a collection of fairy tales in Neapolitan that includes the earliest known versions of Rapunzel and Cinderella Giambattista Basile.jpg
Giambattista Basile (1566–1632), author of a collection of fairy tales in Neapolitan that includes the earliest known versions of Rapunzel and Cinderella

Neapolitan is a Romance language and is generally considered one of the Italo-Romance branch of the Italo-Dalmatian languages. [9] There are notable differences among the various dialects, but they are all generally mutually intelligible.

Italian and Neapolitan are of variable mutual comprehensibility, depending on factors that are both affective and linguistic. There are notable grammatical differences, such as Neapolitan having nouns in the neuter form and a unique plural formation as well as historical phonological developments, which often obscure the cognacy of lexical items.

Its evolution has been similar to that of Italian and other Romance languages from their roots in Vulgar Latin. It may reflect a pre-Latin Oscan substratum, as in the pronunciation of the d sound as an r sound (rhotacism) at the beginning of a word or between two vowels: e.g. doje (feminine) or duje (masculine), meaning "two", is pronounced, and often spelled, as roje/ruje; vedé ("to see") as veré, and often spelled so; also cadé/caré ("to fall") and Madonna /Maronna). Another purported Oscan influence is the historical assimilation of the consonant cluster /nd/ as /nn/, pronounced [nː] (this is generally reflected in spelling more consistently: munno vs Italian mondo "world"; quanno vs Italian quando "when"), along with the development of /mb/ as /mm/~[mː] ( tammuro vs Italian tamburo "drum"), also consistently reflected in spelling. Other effects of the Oscan substratum are postulated, but substratum claims are highly controversial. As in many other languages in the Italian Peninsula, Neapolitan has an adstratum greatly influenced by other Romance languages (Catalan, Spanish and Franco-Provençal above all), Germanic languages, Greek (both ancient and modern) and Arabic. The language had never been standardised, and the word for tree has three different spellings: arbero , arvero and àvaro .

Neapolitan has enjoyed a rich literary, musical and theatrical history (notably Giambattista Basile, Eduardo De Filippo, Salvatore Di Giacomo and Totò). Thanks to this heritage and the musical work of Renato Carosone in the 1950s, Neapolitan is still in use in popular music, even gaining national popularity in the songs of Pino Daniele and the Nuova Compagnia di Canto Popolare.

The language has no official status within Italy and is not taught in schools. The University of Naples Federico II offers (from 2003) courses in Campanian Dialectology at the faculty of Sociology, whose actual aim is not teaching students to speak the language, but studying its history, usage, literature and social role. There are also ongoing legislative attempts at the national level to have it recognized as an official minority language of Italy. It is however a recognized ISO 639 Joint Advisory Committee language with the language code of nap.

Here is the IPA pronunciation of the Neapolitan spoken in the city of Naples:

English Neapolitan (Naples)IPA
Our Father who art in heaven,Pate nuoste ca staje 'n cielo, [ˈpɑːtə ˈnwostə ka ˈstɑːjə nˈdʒjeːlə]
hallowed be thy namesantificammo 'o nnomme tuojo [sandifiˈkamm(ə) o nˈnommə ˈtwoːjə]
Thy kingdom come,faje venì 'o rregno tuojo, [ˈfɑːjə vəˈni o rˈrɛɲɲə ˈtwoːjə]
Thy will be done,sempe cu 'a vuluntà (t)toja, [ˈsɛmbə ˈkɑː vulunˈda (t)ˈtɔːjə]
on earth as it is in heaven.accussì 'n cielo accussì 'n terra. [akkusˈsi nˈdʒjeːlə akkusˈsi nˈdɛrrə]
Give us this day our daily breadFance avé 'o ppane tutte 'e juorne [ˈfandʒ aˈve o pˈpɑːnə ˈtutt e ˈjwornə]
and forgive us our trespassesliévace 'e ddiébbete [ˈljeːvaʃ(ə) e dˈdjebbətə]
as we forgive those who trespass against us,comme nuje 'e llevamme a ll'ate, [ˈkommə ˈnuːjə e lləˈvammə a lˈlɑːtə]
and lead us not into temptation,nun ce fa spantecà, [nun dʒə ˈfa ʃpandəˈka]
but deliver us from evil.e lliévace 'o mmale 'a tuorno. [e lˈljeːvaʃ(ə) o mˈmɑːl(ə) a ˈtwornə]
Amen.Ammèn. [amˈmɛnn(ə)]

Alphabet and pronunciation

Neapolitan orthography consists of 22 Latin letters. Much like Italian orthography, it does not contain k,w,x, or y even though these letters might be found in some foreign words; like traditional Italian, it does contain the letter j. The English pronunciation guidelines that follow are based on General American pronunciation and the values used may not be applicable to other dialects. (See also: International Phonetic Alphabet chart for English dialects.)

All Romance languages are closely related. Although Neapolitan shares a high degree of its vocabulary with Italian, the official language of Italy, differences in pronunciation often make the connection unrecognizable to those without knowledge of Neapolitan. The most striking phonological difference is the Neapolitan weakening of unstressed vowels into schwa (schwa is pronounced like the a in about or the u in upon). However it is also possible (and quite common for some Neapolitans) to speak standard Italian with a "Neapolitan accent"; that is, by pronouncing un-stressed vowels as schwa but by otherwise using only entirely standard words and grammatical forms. This is not Neapolitan proper, but a mere difference in Italian pronunciation.

Therefore, while pronunciation presents the strongest barrier to comprehension, the grammar of Neapolitan is what sets it apart from Italian. In Neapolitan, for example, the gender and number of a word is expressed by a change in the accented vowel, whereas in Italian it is expressed by a change in the final vowel (e.g. luongo [ˈlwoŋɡə] , longa [ˈloŋɡə] ; Italian lungo, lunga; masc. "long", fem. "long"). These and other morpho-syntactic differences distinguish the Neapolitan language from the Italian language and the Neapolitan accent.

Neapolitan has had a significant influence on the intonation of Rioplatense Spanish, of the Buenos Aires region of Argentina, and the whole of Uruguay. [10]


While there are only five graphic vowels in Neapolitan, phonemically, there are eight. Stressed vowels e and o can be either "closed" or "open" and the pronunciation is different for the two. The grave accent (à, è, ò) is used to denote open vowels, and the acute accent (é, í, ó, ú) is used to denote closed vowels, with alternative ì and ù. However, accent marks are not commonly used in the actual spelling of words except when they occur on the final syllable of a word, such as Totò, arrivà, or pecché and when they appear here in other positions it is only to demonstrate where the stress, or accent, falls in some words. Also, the circumflex is used to mark a long vowel where it wouldn't normally occur (e.g. "you are").

Letter IPA Pronunciation guide
a/a/~[ ɑ ]
a is usually open and is pronounced like the a in father
when it is the final, unstressed vowel, its pronunciation is indistinct and approaches the sound of the schwa
stressed, open e is pronounced like the e in bet
stressed, closed e is pronounced like the a in fame except that it does not die off into ee
unstressed e is pronounced as a schwa
i is always closed and is pronounced like the ee in meet

when preceding another vowel

stressed, open o is pronounced like the o in often
stressed, closed o is pronounced like the o in closed except that it does not die off into oo
unstressed o is pronounced as a schwa
u is always closed and is pronounced like the oo in boot

when preceding another vowel


Letter IPA Pronunciation guide
b/b/pronounced the same as in English, always geminated when preceded by another vowel
c/t͡ʃ/~[ ʃ ]
[ d͡ʒ ]
[ ɡ ]
when followed by e or i the pronunciation is somewhere between the sh in share and the ch in chore, especially after a vowel
otherwise it is like the k in skip (not like the c in call, which is aspirated)
in both cases voiced after n
d/d/ dental version of the English d
f/f/pronounced the same as in English
when followed by e or i the pronunciation is like the g of germane, always geminated when preceded by another vowel
otherwise it is like the g in gum
hh is always silent and is only used to differentiate words pronounced the same and otherwise spelled alike (e.g. a, ha; anno, hanno)
and after g or c to preserve the hard sound when e or i follows (e.g. ce, che; gi, ghi)
j/j/referred to as a semi-consonant, is pronounced like English y as in yet
l/l/pronounced the same as in English
m/m/pronounced the same as in English
n/n/pronounced the same as in English; if followed by a consonant, it variously changes its point of articulation
pronounced the same as the p in English spill (not as the p in pill, which is aspirated)
voiced after m
q/kʷ/represented by orthographic qu, pronounced the same as in English
r/r/~[ ɾ ]when between two vowels it is sounds very much like the American tt in butter but in reality it is a single tic of a trilled r
when at the beginning of a word or when preceded by or followed by another consonant, it is trilled
[ d͡z ]
[ z ]
pronounced the same as in English sound unless it comes before a consonant other than /t d n r l/
pronounced as ds in lads after n
pronounced as English z before d
[ ʒ ] [11]
pronounced sh when followed by a voiceless consonant (except /t/)
zh when followed by a voiced consonant (except /n d r l/)
dental version of the English t as in state (not as the t in tool, which is aspirated)
voiced after n
v/v/pronounced the same as in English
x/k(ə)s/pronounced like the cks in backs or like the cchus in Bacchus ; this consonant sequence does not occur in native Neapolitan or Italian words
voiced z is pronounced like the ds in lads
unvoiced z (not occurring after n) is pronounced like the ts in jetsam

Digraphs and trigraphs

The following clusters are always geminated if vowel-following.

Letter IPA Pronunciation Guide
gn/ɲ/ palatal version of the ni in the English onion
gl(i)/ʎ/~[ ʝ ]palatal version of the lli in the English million, most commonly realized like a strong version of y in the English yes.
sc/ʃ/when followed by e or i it is pronounced as the sh in the English ship


Definite articles

The Neapolitan classical definite articles (corresponding to the English word "the") are la (feminine singular), lo (masculine singular) and li (plural for both), but in reality these forms will probably only be found in older literature (along with lu and even el), of which there is much to be found. Modern Neapolitan uses, almost entirely, shortened forms of these articles which are:

Before a word beginning with a consonant:


These definite articles are always pronounced distinctly.

Before a word beginning with a vowel, l’ or ll’ are used for both masculine and feminine, for both singular and plural. Although both forms can be found, the ll’ form is by far the most common.

It is well to note that in Neapolitan the gender of a noun is not easily determined by the article, so other means must be used. In the case of ’o which can be either masculine singular or neuter singular (there is no neuter plural in Neapolitan), when it is neuter the initial consonant of the noun is doubled. As an example, the name of a language in Neapolitan is always neuter, so if we see ’o nnapulitano we know it refers to the Neapolitan language, whereas ’o napulitano would refer to a Neapolitan man.

Likewise, since ’e can be either masculine plural or feminine plural, when it is feminine plural, the initial consonant of the noun is doubled. As an example, consider ’a lista which in Neapolitan is feminine singular for "list." In the plural it becomes ’e lliste.

There can also be problems with nouns whose singular form ends in e. Since plural nouns usually end in e whether masculine or feminine, the masculine plural is often formed by orthographically changing the spelling. As an example, consider the word guaglione (which means "boy", or "girl" in the feminine form):

Masculine’o guaglione’e guagliune
Feminine’a guagliona’e gguaglione

More will be said about these orthographically changing nouns in the section on Neapolitan nouns.

A couple of notes about consonant doubling:

Indefinite articles

The Neapolitan indefinite articles, corresponding to the English a or an, are presented in the following table:

Before words beginning with a consonantnuna
Before words beginning with a voweln’

Verbal conjugation

In Neapolitan there are four finite moods: indicative, subjunctive, conditional and imperative, and three non-finite modes: infinitive, gerund and participle. Each mood has an active and a passive form. The only auxiliary verbs used in the active form is (h)avé (Eng. "to have", It. avere), which contrasts with Italian in which the intransitive and reflexive verbs take èssere for their auxiliary. For example, we have:

Nap.Aggio stato a Nnapule ajere.AUX-HAVE-1st-SING-PRES "be"-PART-PAST "in"-PREP "Naples"-NOUN "yesterday"-ADVERB
It.Sono stato a Napoli ieri.AUX-BE-1st-SING-PRES "be"-PART-PAST "in"-PREP "Naples"-NOUN "yesterday"-ADVERB
Eng.I was in Naples yesterday.

Doubled initial consonants

In Neapolitan, many times the initial consonant of a word is doubled. This is called raddoppiamento sintattico in Italian as it also applies to the Italian phonology.

However, when there is a pause after the "trigger" word, the phonological doubling does not occur (e.g. tu sî (g)guaglione, [You are a boy], where is a "trigger" word causing doubling of the initial consonant in guaglione but in the phrase ’e do sî, guaglió? [Where are you from, boy?] no doubling occurs). Neither does doubling occur when the initial consonant is followed by another consonant (e.g. ’o ttaliano [the Italian language], but ’o spagnuolo [the Spanish language], where ’o is the neuter definite article). This is what happens phonologically and no orthographic change is required. The same thing happens in Italian, where multiple words trigger first-consonant doubling, e.g. la casa but a (c)casa, io e (t)te, etc.

Words that trigger doubling in pronunciation

  • The conjunctions e and but not o (e.g. pane e ccaso; né (p)pane né (c)caso; but pane o caso)
  • The prepositions a, pe, cu (e.g. a (m)me; pe (t)te; cu (v)vuje)
  • The negation nu, short for nun (e.g. nu ddicere niente)
  • The indefinites ogne, cocche (e.g. ogne (c)casa; cocche (c)cosa)
  • Interrogative che and relative che but not ca (e.g. che (p)piense?che (f)femmena!che (c)capa!)
  • accussí (e.g. accussí (b)bello)
  • From the verb "essere," so’; ; è but not songo (e.g. je so’ (p)pazzo; tu sî (f)fesso; chella è (M)Maria; chilli so’ (c)cafune but chilli songo cafune)
  • chiú (e.g. chiú (p)poco)
  • The number tre (e.g. tre (s)segge)
  • The neuter definite article ’o (e.g. ’o (p)pane, but nu poco ’e pane)
  • The neuter pronoun ’o (e.g. ’o (t)tiene ’o (p)pane?)
  • Demonstrative adjectives chistu and chillu which refer to neuter nouns in indefinite quantities (e.g. chistu (f)fierro; chillu (p)pane) but not in definite quantities (e.g. Chistu fierro; chillu pane)
  • The feminine plural definite article ’e (e.g. ’e (s)segge; ’e (g)guaglione)
  • The plural feminine pronoun ’e (’e (g)guaglione ’e (c)chiamme tu?)
  • The plural masculine pronoun ’e preceding a verb, but not a noun (’e guagliune ’e (c)chiamme tu?)
  • The locative lloco (e.g. lloco (s)sotto)
  • From the verb stà: sto’ (e.g. sto’ (p)parlanno)
  • From the verb puté: può; (e.g. isso pô (s)sapé)
  • Special case Spiritu (S)Santo

See also

Related Research Articles

Latin declension is the set of patterns according to which Latin words are declined, or have their endings altered to show grammatical case, number and gender. Nouns, pronouns, and adjectives are declined, and a given pattern is called a declension. There are five declensions, which are numbered and grouped by ending and grammatical gender. Each noun follows one of the five declensions, but some irregular nouns have exceptions.

Romance languages The languages derived from Vulgar Latin

The Romance languages are the modern languages that evolved from Vulgar Latin between the third and eighth centuries. They are a subgroup of the Italic languages in the Indo-European language family.

The vocative case is used for a noun that identifies a person being addressed or occasionally for the determiners of that noun. A vocative expression is an expression of direct address by which the identity of the party spoken to is set forth expressly within a sentence. For example, in the sentence "I don't know, John," John is a vocative expression that indicates the party being addressed, as opposed to the sentence "I don't know John" in which "John" is the direct object of the verb "know".

The locative case is a grammatical case which indicates a location. It corresponds vaguely to the English prepositions "in", "on", "at", and "by". The locative case belongs to the general local cases, together with the lative and separative case.

Plautdietsch, Plauttdietsch or Mennonite Low German, is a Low Prussian dialect of East Low German with Dutch influence that developed in the 16th and 17th centuries in the Vistula delta area of Royal Prussia. The word Plautdietsch translates to "flat German", from plaut meaning "flat", and dietsch meaning German. In other Low German dialects, the word for Low German is usually realised as Plattdütsch/Plattdüütsch[ˈplatdyːtʃ] or Plattdüütsk[ˈplatdyːtsk], but the spelling Plautdietsch is used to refer specifically to the Vistula variant of the language.

Friulian or Friulan is a Romance language belonging to the Rhaeto-Romance family, spoken in the Friuli region of northeastern Italy. Friulian has around 600,000 speakers, the vast majority of whom also speak Italian. It is sometimes called Eastern Ladin since it shares the same roots as Ladin, but, over the centuries, it has diverged under the influence of surrounding languages, including German, Italian, Venetian, and Slovene. Documents in Friulian are attested from the 11th century and poetry and literature date as far back as 1300. By the 20th century, there was a revival of interest in the language.

Föhr North Frisian dialect of the North Frisian language

Föhr Frisian, or Fering, is the dialect of North Frisian spoken on the island of Föhr in the German region of North Frisia. Fering refers to the Fering Frisian name of Föhr, Feer. Together with the Öömrang, Söl'ring, and Heligolandic dialects, it forms part of the insular group of North Frisian dialects and it is very similar to Öömrang.

Catalan grammar

Catalan grammar, the morphology and syntax of the Catalan language, is similar to the grammar of most other Romance languages. Catalan is a relatively synthetic, fusional language.

This page describes the declension of nouns, adjectives and pronouns in Slovene. For information on Slovene grammar in general, see Slovene grammar.

Irish initial mutations

Irish, like all modern Celtic languages, is characterized by its initial consonant mutations. These mutations affect the initial consonant of a word under specific morphological and syntactic conditions. The mutations are an important tool in understanding the relationship between two words and can differentiate various meanings.

Spanish nouns Grammatical feature of Spanish

The Spanish language has nouns that express concrete objects, groups and classes of objects, qualities, feelings and other abstractions. All nouns have a conventional grammatical gender. Countable nouns inflect for number. However, the division between uncountable and countable nouns is more ambiguous than in English.

Romanian nouns, under the rules of Romanian grammar, are declined, varying by gender, number, and case.

Gothic is an inflected language, and as such its nouns, pronouns, and adjectives must be declined in order to serve a grammatical function. A set of declined forms of the same word pattern is called a declension. There are five grammatical cases in Gothic with a few traces of an old sixth instrumental case.

Sanskrit is a highly inflected language with three grammatical genders and three numbers. It has eight cases: nominative, vocative, accusative, instrumental, dative, ablative, genitive, and locative.

The morphology of the Welsh language shows many characteristics perhaps unfamiliar to speakers of English or continental European languages like French or German, but has much in common with the other modern Insular Celtic languages: Irish, Scottish Gaelic, Manx, Cornish, and Breton. Welsh is a moderately inflected language. Verbs inflect for person, tense and mood with affirmative, interrogative and negative conjugations of some verbs. There are few case inflections in Literary Welsh, being confined to certain pronouns.

Old Norse has three categories of verbs and two categories of nouns. Conjugation and declension are carried out by a mix of inflection and two nonconcatenative morphological processes: umlaut, a backness-based alteration to the root vowel; and ablaut, a replacement of the root vowel, in verbs.

Old High German is an inflected language, and as such its nouns, pronouns, and adjectives must be declined in order to serve a grammatical function. A set of declined forms of the same word pattern is called a declension. There are five grammatical cases in Old High German.

Proto-Italic language Ancestor of Latin and other Italic languages

The Proto-Italic language is the ancestor of the Italic languages, most notably Latin and its descendants, the Romance languages. It is not directly attested in writing, but has been reconstructed to some degree through the comparative method. Proto-Italic descended from the earlier Proto-Indo-European language.

Kalix is a divergent Swedish dialect spoken in the Kalix Municipality along with Sami, Finnish, Meänkieli, and the national standard language Swedish. Like other Scandinavian languages, the Kalix dialect originates in Proto-Norse and dialects of Old Norse, spoken by immigrating Germanic settlers during the Viking Age. It has three grammatical genders, two plural forms of indefinite nouns, and broad usage of definite nouns. Nouns are also inflected differently in dative and accusative case, and there are three forms of expressing genitive. Most verbs are conjugated differently in singular and plural, while most adjectives are not. Some adjectives can though be serially joined with nouns and some have two plural forms. A pleonastic article is also always used before people's and pet's names.

Historical linguistics has made tentative postulations about and multiple varyingly different reconstructions of Proto-Germanic grammar, as inherited from Proto-Indo-European grammar. All reconstructed forms are marked with an asterisk (*).


  1. Neapolitan at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Continental Southern Italian". Glottolog 3.0 . Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "South Lucanian". Glottolog 3.0 . Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  4. Minahan, James (2002). Encyclopedia of the Stateless Nations: L-R. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 1348. ISBN   978-0-313-32111-5.
  5. J.-P. Cavaillé; Le napolitain : une langue majoritaire minorée. 09 mars 2007.
  6. The Guardian for the list of languages in the Unesco site.
  7. "Tutela del dialetto, primo via libera al Ddl campano" Archived 27 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine ("Bill to protect dialect green lighted") from Il Denaro, economic journal of South Italy, 15 October 2008 Re Franceschiello. L'ultimo sovrano delle Due Sicilie
  8. Carta dei Dialetti d'Italia Archived 3 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine (Mapping of dialects of Italy) by Giovan Battista Pellegrini, 1977 (in Italian)
  9. Hammarström, Harald & Forkel, Robert & Haspelmath, Martin & Nordhoff, Sebastian. 2014. "Italo-Dalmatian" Glottolog 2.3. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.
  10. Colantoni, Laura, and Jorge Gurlekian."Convergence and intonation: historical evidence from Buenos Aires Spanish", Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, Volume 7, Issue 02, August 2004, pp. 107–119, Cambridge Journals Online
  11. Canepari, Luciano (2005), Italia (PDF), Manuale di fonetica, Lincom Europa, pp. 282–283, ISBN   3-89586-456-0, archived from the original (PDF) on 6 June 2011 (in Italian)

Additional sources