57,592,000 (1995). Italian Republic, Repubblica Italiana. Literacy rate 97% to 98%. Also includes English 29,000, Maltese 28,000, Chinese 40,000, Somali, people from Eritrea, the Philippines. Data accuracy estimate: B. Christian, secular. Blind population 100,000. Deaf institutions: 80. The number of languages listed for Italy is 33.
ALBANIAN, ARBËRESHË (ARBËRESHË) [AAE] 80,000 (L. Newmark) to 100,000 speakers (N. Vincent in B. Comrie 1987), out of a population of 260,000 (1976 M. Stephens). Southern; Calabria, Apulia, Basilicate, Molice, Sicily. Indo-European, Albanian, Tosk. Dialects: SICILIAN ALBANIAN, CALABRIAN ALBANIAN, CENTRAL MOUNTAIN ALBANIAN, CAMPO MARINO ALBANIAN. 45% lexical similarity with Tosk Albanian, 10% with Italian, 5% with Greek. Speakers say the four Italian dialects are not inherently intelligible with each other. Albanian is the language of the home. Speakers are bilingual in Italian and regional Italian dialects in varying degrees; one report says they are highly bilingual. Descendents of 15th century mercenaries. Some literature. Strong position in some districts. Not used in schools. No official status. Farmers, shepherds. Christian. Bible portions 1868-1869. Survey needed.
BAVARIAN (BAYRISCH, BAVARIAN AUSTRIAN) [BAR] South Bavarian is in the Bavarian Alps, Tyrol, Styria, including Heanzian dialect of Burgenland, Carinthia, northern Italy, and part of Gottschee in Slovenia; Central Bavarian is in the Alps and Lower Austria and Salzburg; North Bavarian in the north of Regensburg, to Nuremburg and Western Bohemia, Czech Republic. Indo-European, Germanic, West, Continental, High. Dialects: CENTRAL BAVARIAN, NORTH BAVARIAN, SOUTH BAVARIAN. Survey needed.
CATALAN-VALENCIAN-BALEAR [CLN] 21,629 in Alghero (1987); 4,353,000 or more in all countries. Alghero, northwest coast on Sardinia. Also in Spain, France, Andorra, Latin America, western Europe, Algeria. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Western, Ibero-Romance, North, Eastern. Dialect: ALGHERESE. Italian or Logudorese Sardinian are used as second language by many. Bible 1478-1993. NT 1832-1988. Bible portions 1928-1985.
CIMBRIAN (TZIMBRO, ZIMBRISCH) [CIM] 2,230 including 500 in Lusernese Cimbrian in Trentino Alto Oolige 40 km. southeast from Trento; plus 1,500 Sette Comuni Cimbrian (40% of Roana (Rowan), 70% of Mezzaselva di Roana, Rotzo) in Veneto around 60 km. north of Vicenza (1978 H. Kloss); and 230 or 65% of Giazza (Ijetzan) Veneto, 43 km. northeast of Verona (1992 R. Zamponi). There were 22,700 speakers in Sieben Gemainde and 12,400 in Dreizehn Gemeinde in 1854. Northeast Italy, Sette and Tredici Communi (Sieben and Dreizehn Gemainde) south of Trent, towns of Giazza (Glietzen, Ljetzen), Roana (Rabam), Lusern, some in Venetia Province. Indo-European, Germanic, West, Continental, High. Dialects: LUSERNESE CIMBRIAN, TREDICI COMMUNI CIMBRIAN (TAUCH), SETTE COMUNI CIMBRIAN. Structural and intelligibility differences indicate that the 3 varieties could be considered separate languages. Lusernese Cimbrian is heavily influenced by Italian. Speakers are all bilingual in Standard Italian and Venetian (Trentine), and many know Standard German. Heavily influenced by Bajuwarisch dialects and Italian. No written influence from Standard German. It is sometimes considered a dialect of south Bavarian. Pastors preached in Cimbrian until the late 19th century. Attempts to promote it have been increasing in recent decades. It is taught in some classes and is scheduled to become required. Two newspapers since 1969. Distinct from Bavarian, Walser, and Mocheno. Survey needed.
CORSICAN (CORSO, CORSU, CORSE, CORSI) [COI] 260,000 or more in all countries (1976). Maddalena Island, northeast coast of Sardinia. Also Corsica, Bolivia, Canada, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Uruguay, USA, Venezuela. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Southern, Corsican. Southern Corsican is closer to Gallurese Sardinian than to other Corsican dialects (R.A. Hall, Jr.). Bible portions 1861. Work in progress.
EMILIANO-ROMAGNOLO (EMILIANO, EMILIAN, SAMMARINESE) [EML] (20,112 in San Marino; 1993 Johnstone). Northwest Italy. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Italo-Romance. Dialects: WESTERN EMILIANO, EASTERN EMILIANO, MANTOVANO, VOGHERESE-PAVESE, LUNIGIANO, ROMAGNOLO, MARCHIGIANO, SETTENTRIONALE. A structurally separate language from Italian (F.B. Agard). Survey needed.
FRANCO-PROVENÇAL [FRA] 70,000 in Italy (1971 census), including 700 Faetar speakers (1995 Naomi Nagy). Northwest Italy, Aosta Valley. A small speech community also in southern Italy in Faeto and Celle S. Vito in the Province of Foggia in Apulia. Vaudois also in southeast France. Covers a huge area. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Western, Gallo-Romance. Dialects: VALLE D'AOSTA (PATOÉ VALDOTEN, VALDOTAIN, VALDOSTANO), FAETO (FAETAR), CELLE SAN VITO. A structurally separate language from Provençal, French, Piemontese, and Lombard (F.B. Agard). Bible portions 1830. Survey needed.
FRENCH (FRANÇAIS) [FRN] 100,000 in Italy (M. Harris in B. Comrie 1987); 72,000,000 in all countries (1995 WA). Aosta Valley. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Western, Gallo-Romance. Official regional status. Bible 1530-1986. NT 1474-1980. Bible portions 1483-1987.
FRIULIAN (FURLAN, FRIOULAN, FRIOULIAN, PRIULIAN, FRIULANO) [FRL] 600,000 in Italy (1976 Stephens); a few in Slovenia. Northeast and adjacent areas, northern Friuli-Venezia-Giulia on the borders of the Austrian province of Corinthia and the Yugoslav Republic of Slovenia. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Italo-Romance. Dialects: EAST CENTRAL FRUILIAN, WESTERN FRIULIAN, CARNICO. Friulian, Ladin, and Romansch are separate languages (R. A. Hall, Jr. 1978, personal communication). Most speakers know standard Italian. Some are cultivating Friulian as a literary language. Regional pride. In the area of Gorizia all the Slovenes speak it as a second or third language. F. B. Agard considers it to be structurally closer to Italian than to Romansch (personal communication 1981). Germans in the area also speak it. NT 1972. Bible portions 1860.
GERMAN, STANDARD [GER] 225,000 in Italy (N. Vincent in B. Comrie 1987); 98,000,000 in all countries (1995 WA). Northern, Trentino-Alto Adige, South Tyrol, Province of Bolzano. Indo-European, Germanic, West, Continental, High. Official language in Alto-Adige region. German used in schools. National language. Bible 1466-1982. NT 1522-1983. Bible portions 1522-1987.
GREEK [GRK] 20,000 in Italy (N. Vincent in B. Comrie 1987); 12,000,000 in all countries (1995 WA). Southern, east of Reggio; Salento (Colimera, Sternatía, Zollino) and Aspromonte (Bova, Condofuri, Palizzi, Roccoforte, Roghudi). Indo-European, Greek, Attic. Dialects: SALENTO, ASPROMONTE. Not used in schools. Mainly older speakers. The Greek spoken in Italy and that of Corsica are probably two separate languages (R. Zamponi 1992). Bible 1840-1994. NT 1638-1989. Bible portions 1547-1949.
ITALIAN [ITN] 30,000,000 in Italy excluding distinct 'dialects'; 906,000 in USA (1989); 1,500,000 in Argentina; 1,000,000 in France; 195,000 in Switzerland (1990); 548,000 in Germany; 200,000 in United Kingdom; 79,000 in Uruguay; 21,000 in San Marino (1979 WA); 300,000 in Croatia; 3,000 in Slovenia (1976); 280,000 in Belgium; 500,000 in Brazil; 538,360 in Canada (1971 census); 500,000 in Australia; 5,435 in Israel (1961); 26,000 in Paraguay; 1,556 in Puerto Rico (1970); 800 in Liechtenstein; 20,800 in Luxembourg; 28,000 in Uruguay; 40,000,000 in all countries excluding distinct 'dialects' (1983 estimate); 63,000,000 including second language users (1995 WA). Also in Egypt, Eritrea, Libya, Monaco, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Tunisia. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Italo-Romance. Dialects: TUSCAN, ABRUZZESE, PUGLIESE, UMBRIAN, LAZIALE, CENTRAL MARCHIGIANO, CICOLANO-REATINO-AQUILANO, MOLISANO. Regional varieties coexist with the standard language; some are inherently unintelligible (Nida). Aquilano, Molisano, and Pugliese are very different from the other Italian 'dialects'. Piemontese and Sicilian are distinct enough to be separate languages (F.B. Agard 1981, personal communication). Venetian and Lombard are also very different (Philippe Cousson 1981, personal communication). Neapolitan is reported to be unintelligible with Standard Italian. Northern varieties are closer to French and Occitan than to standard or southern varieties (Agard, N. Vincent). Most Italians use varieties along a continuum from standard to regional to local according to what is appropriate. Possibly nearly half the population do not use the standard as mother tongue. 89% lexical similarity with French, 87% with Catalan, 85% with Sardinian, 82% with Spanish, 78% with Rheto-Romance, 77% with Rumanian. National language. Typology: SVO. Braille NT. Bible 1471-1985. NT 1530-1981. Bible portions 1531-1984.
ITALIAN SIGN LANGUAGE (LINGUA ITALIANA DEI SEGNI, LIS) [ISE] Deaf sign language. Partially intelligible with French Sign Language. Not intelligible with American Sign Language. Regional differences, but signers from different regions seem to communicate fluently. Used in families, clubs, and schools outside the classroom, but not in the classroom.
JUDEO-ITALIAN (ITALKIAN) [ITK] A tiny number who speak it fluently. Perhaps 4,000 occasionally use elements of it in their speech (1/10th of Italy's 40,000 Jews). Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Italo-Romance. More commonly spoken two generations ago. Used in Passover song. Jewish. Nearly extinct.
LADIN (DOLOMITE, LADINO) [LLD] 30,000 to 35,000 in Italy (1976 Stephens). Southern Tyrol in the Alto Adige and the Dolomites, principally in Badia Valley in the autonomous province of Bolzano, also in the provinces of Trento and Belluno, in the parishes of Valle Moena, Cortina d'Ampezzo, Pieve-di-Livinallongo and Colle-Santa-Lucia, Cles, Val di Non. Nones also in USA: Solvay (NY?), Hazleton (PA?), Rocksprings (TX?). Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Western, Gallo-Romance, Rheto-Romance. Dialects: ATESINO, CADORINO, NONES (NONES BLOT, NONESH, PARLATA TRENTINA), GARDENA (GARDENESE, GRÜDNO), FASSANO, BADIOTTO, MAREBBANO, LIVINALLESE, AMPEZZANO. Most people know Standard Italian, but have pride in their language. Friulian, Ladin, and Romansch are separate languages (R. A. Hall, Jr. 1978, personal communication). Seven dialects. Written since 1700. The dialect of Val di Fassa is taught in schools. Distinct from Ladino (Dzhudezmo, Judeo-Spanish). Survey needed.
LIGURIAN (LIGURE) [LIJ] 1,853,578 (1976). Liguria, northern Italy; St. Pietro and St. Antioch, islands off southwest coast of Sardinia, cities of Carloforte and Calasetta in Sardinia. Also in Monaco and Corsica, France. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Western, Gallo-Romance, Ligurian. Dialect: GENOESE (GENOAN, GENOVESE). Very different from Standard Italian. Speakers may all be adequately bilingual in Standard Italian. Bible portions 1860. Survey needed.
LOMBARD (LOMBARDO) [LMO] 8,671,210 in Italy (1976); 303,000 in Switzerland (1995); 8,974,000 in all countries. Milan, Lombardy, northern Italy. Western Lombard varieties also in Sicily. Ticino is in Switzerland. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Western, Gallo-Romance, Lombard. Dialects: MILANESE, EASTERN LOMBARD, WESTERN LOMBARD (PIAZZA ARMERINA, NOVARA, NICOSIA, SAN FRATELLO), ALPINE LOMBARD, NOVARESE LOMBARD, TRENTINO WESTERN, LATIN FIAMAZZO, LATIN ANAUNICO, BERGAMASCO, TICINESE (TICINO). A group of dialects, some of which may be separate languages. Very different from Standard Italian. Speakers may all be adequately bilingual in Standard Italian. Bible portions 1859-1860. Survey needed.
MÓCHENO [QMO] 1,900 including 400 Fierozzo, 1,000 Palú, 460 Gereut (1992 Raoul Zamponi). Valle del Fersina (Trentino). Indo-European, Germanic, West, Continental, High. Dialects: FIEROZZO (FLORUTZ), PALÚ (PALAI), FRASSILONGO (GEREUT). Speakers can partially understand Bavarian, Cimbrian, or Standard German. Survey needed.
NEAPOLITAN-CALABRESE [NPL] 7,047,399 (1976). Campania and Calabria provinces, southern Italy. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Italo-Romance. Dialects: NEAPOLITAN (NAPOLITANO, TIRRENIC), SOUTHERN CALABRESE (CALABRIAN), NORTHERN CALABRESE-LUCANO. Not inherently intelligible with Standard Italian. Many speakers do not know Standard Italian. Vigorous language use. A large literature. Neapolitan and Calabrese are reported to be very different from each other. Bible portions 1861-1862. Work in progress.
PIEMONTESE (PIEDMONTESE) [PMS] 3,000,000 (1976). Northwest Italy, Piedmont. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Western, Gallo-Romance, Piemontese. Dialects: HIGH PIEMONTESE, LOW PIEMONTESE. Distinct enough from Standard Italian to be considered a separate language. Considerable French influence. Speakers may all be adequately bilingual in Standard Italian. NT 1835. Bible portions 1834-1861.
PROVENÇAL (PROVENZALE) [PRV] 100,000 in Italy (1990 P. Blanchet); 250,000 in France (1990); 4,500 in Monaco (1988); 354,500 in all countries. Upper valleys of the Italian Piedmont (Val Mairo, Val Varacho, Val d'Esturo, Entraigas, Limoun, Vinai, Pignerol, Sestriero), Guardia Piemonese in Calabria. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Western, Ibero-Romance, North, Eastern. Dialect: TRANSALPIN. It is widely spoken by people of all ages. People also speak Piemontese and Italian. Bible portions 1824-1975. Work in progress.
ROMANI, BALKAN [RMN] 5,000 Arlija in Italy; 1,000,000 in all countries (1980 UBS). Also Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, Greece, Turkey, France, Germany, Romania, Hungary, Iran, Moldova, Ukraine. Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Indo-Aryan, Central zone, Romani, Balkan. Dialect: ARLIJA (ERLI). A Gypsy language. Muslim. Bible portions 1912-1937. Work in progress.
ROMANI, SINTE [RMO] 14,000 in Italy including 10,000 Manouche; 4,000 Slovenian-Croatian; 200,000 in all countries (1980 Kenrick). North Italy. Also in Yugoslavia, France, Germany, Austria, Netherlands, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Kazakhstan. Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Indo-Aryan, Central zone, Romani, Northern. Dialects: PIEDMONT SINTÍ, SLOVENIAN-CROATIAN, MANOUCHE. Not intelligible with Vlach Romani. A Gypsy language. Christian. Bible portions 1875-1930. Work in progress.
ROMANI, VLACH [RMY] 2,000 to 4,000 in Italy including 1,000 to 3,000 Kalderash, 1,000 Lovari; 1,500,000 in all countries (1986 estimate). Also in Romania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, England, Germany, France, Hungary, Sweden, Norway, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Greece, Albania, Poland, Ukraine, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, USA. Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Indo-Aryan, Central zone, Romani, Vlax. Dialects: KALDERASH, LOVARI. A Gypsy language. Christian. NT 1984-1995. Bible portions 1930-1986.
SARDINIAN, CAMPIDANESE (SARDU, CAMPIDANESE, CAMPIDESE, SOUTH SARDINIAN) [SRO] Southern Sardinia. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Southern, Sardinian. Dialects: CAGLIARE (CAGLIARI, CAGLIARITAN), ARBORENSE, SUB-BARBARICINO, WESTERN CAMPIDENESE, CENTRAL CAMPIDANESE, OGLIASTRINO, SULCITANO, MERIDIONALE, SARRABENSE. It is in general use in the south. Cagliaritan is the dialect of Cagliari, the capital of Sardinia. Cagliare has 62% lexical similarity with Standard Italian, 73% with Logudorese. Campidanese is quite distinct from the other Sardinian languages. A movement is growing to recognize Sard as an important part of their linguistic and cultural heritage. Bible portions 1860-1900. Survey needed.
SARDINIAN, GALLURESE (NORTHEASTERN SARDINIAN, GALLURESE) [SDN] Gallurese is in northeastern Sardinia. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Southern, Sardinian. Influenced by Corsican and Tuscan (Standard Italian). 83% lexical similarity with Standard Italian; 81% with Sassarese; 70% with Logudorese, 66% with Cagliare. They call Campidanese and Logudorese 'Sard', and the people 'Sards', but do not include themselves or their language in those terms. A growing movement to recognize Sard as an important part of their cultural and linguistic heritage. Bible portions 1861-1862. Survey needed.
SARDINIAN, LOGUDORESE (SARD, SARDARESE, LOGUDORESE, CENTRAL SARDINIAN) [SRD] 1,500,000 including all Sardinian languages (1977 M. Ibba, Rutgers University). Central Sardinia. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Southern, Sardinian. Dialects: NUORESE, NORTHERN LOGUDORESE, BARBARICINO, SOUTHWESTERN LOGUDORESE. No one form of Sardinian is selected as standard for literary purposes. Italian is used for literary and teaching purposes. Sardinian is in general use in central and southern areas. It has prestige equal to Italian in some contexts including writing. Farmers and housewives over 35 use almost no Italian. Logudorese is quite distinct from other Sardinian varieties; it has 68% lexical similarity with Standard Italian, 73% with Sassarese and Cagliarese, 70% with Gallurese. 'Sardinian' has 85% lexical similarity with Italian, 80% with French, 78% with Portuguese, 76% with Spanish, 74% with Rumanian and Rheto-Romance. There is a growing movement to recognize Sard as an important part of their linguistic and cultural heritage. Christian. Bible portions 1858-1861. Survey needed.
SARDINIAN, SASSARESE (NORTHWESTERN SARDINIAN, SASSARESE) [SDC] Northwestern Sardinia. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Southern, Sardinian. Influenced by Ligurian and Pisan (Pisa; northwest coast of Italy). 81% lexical similarity with Gallurese, 76% with Standard Italian. They call Campidanese and Logudorese 'Sard', and the people 'Sards', but do not include themselves or their language in those terms. There is a growing movement to recognize Sard as an important part of their cultural and linguistic heritage. Bible portions 1863-1866. Survey needed.
SERBO-CROATIAN [SRC] 3,500 in Italy (N. Vincent in B. Comrie 1987); 21,000,000 in all countries (1995). Molise, southern, villages of Montemitro, San Felice del Molise, Acquaviva-Collecroce. Also Yugoslavia, Macedonia, Austria, Hungary, Russia, Greece, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden, Turkey, USA, Canada, Australia. Indo-European, Slavic, South, Western. Dialect: CROATIAN. Descendents of 5th and 6th century refugees. They are reviving the use of Serbo-Croatian literature. Christian, Muslim. Bible 1804-1968. NT 1563-1983. Bible portions 1564-1987.
SICILIAN [SCN] 4,680,715 (1976). Sicily, an island off the southern mainland. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Italo-Romance. Dialects: WESTERN SICILIAN (PALERMO, TRAPANI, CENTRAL-WESTERN AGRIGENTINO), CENTRAL METAFONETICA, SOUTHEAST METAFONETICA, EASTERN NONMETAFONETICA, MESSINESE, ISOLE EOLIE, PANTESCO. Distinct enough from Standard Italian to be considered a separate language. Vigorous language use. Considerable French influence. Speakers may all be bilingual in Standard Italian. Bible portions 1860. Survey needed.
SLOVENIAN (SLOVENE) [SLV] 100,000 in Italy (N. Vincent in B. Comrie 1987); 2,218,000 in all countries. The provinces of Trieste and Gorizia in northeast near Yugoslavia border. Primarily in Slovenia; also in Hungary, Austria, Canada, USA. Indo-European, Slavic, South, Western. The Slovenes have their own schools. Bible 1584-1985. NT 1577-1985. Bible portions 1555-1993.
VENETIAN [VEC] 2,109,502 in Italy (1976); 100,000 in Croatia and Slovenia (1994 Tapani Salminen). Venetia, northern Italy. Indo-European, Italic, Romance, Italo-Western, Italo-Romance. Dialects: ISTRIAN, TRETINE, VENETIAN PROPER. Very different from Standard Italian. Vigorous language use. Speakers may all be bilingual in Standard Italian. Bible portions 1859. Survey needed.
WALSER (WALSCHER) [WAE] 3,400 (1978 Fazzini). Val Lesa (Gressoney, Issime, Gaby), Valsesie (Alagna, Rima S. Siuseppe, Rimelle), Valle Anzacxa (Macugnage). Also in Bosco-Gurin, Canton Ticino, Switzerland. Indo-European, Germanic, West, Continental, High. Ancestors came from the Bernese Oberland between the 12th and 13th centuries. Close but distinct from Schwytzertusch spoken in Wallis Canton in Switzerland. Distinct from Cimbrian, Mocheno, or Bavarian. Used in church in Switzerland. In Valle d'Aosta it has been influenced by Franco-Provençal and Piemontese; elsewhere in Italy by Italian. Survey needed.
Part of the Ethnologue, 13th Edition, Barbara F. Grimes, Editor.
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