ProvenÃ§al /prÉ'vÉ'nËsÃ¦l/ (Occitan: ProvenÃ§au or ProuvenÃ§au [pÊuveâ¿Ësaw]) is a variety of Occitan spoken by a minority of people in southern France, mostly in Provence. In the English-speaking world, "ProvenÃ§al" is often used to refer to all dialects of Occitan, but more properly it refers to the dialect spoken in Provence. However there is an important controversy about whether ProvenÃ§al is an Occitan dialect or a particular language.
"ProvenÃ§al" (with "Limousin") is also the customary name given to the older version of the langue d'oc used by the troubadours of medieval literature, while Old French or the langue d'oÃ¯l was limited to the northern areas of France.
In 2007, the ISO 639-3 code changed from prv to oci, as prv was merged into oci.
The main sub-dialects of ProvenÃ§al are:
- Rodanenc (in French Rhodanien) around the lower Rhone river, Arles, Avignon, NÃ®mes.
- A Rodanenc subvariety, the Shuadit (or Judeo-ProvenÃ§al), has been considered extinct since 1977. It was spoken by the Jewish community around Avignon. When Jews were granted freedom of residence in France the dialect declined.
- Maritim or Centrau or MediterranÃ¨u (Maritime or Central or Mediterranean) around Aix-en-Provence, Marseille, Toulon, Cannes, Antibes, Grasse, Forcalquier, Castellane, Draguignan.
- NiÃ§ard in the lower County of Nice.
GavÃ²t (in French Gavot), spoken in the Western Occitan Alps, around Digne, Sisteron, Gap, Barcelonnette and the upper County of Nice, but also in a part of the ArdÃ¨che, is not exactly a subdialect of ProvenÃ§al, but rather a closely related Occitan dialect, also known as Vivaro-Alpine. So is the dialect spoken in the upper valleys of Piedmont, Italy (Val Maira, Val Varacha, Val d'Estura, Entraigas, Limon, Vinai, Pignerol, Sestriera). Some people view GavÃ²t as a variety of ProvenÃ§al since a part of the Gavot area (near Digne and Sisteron) belongs to historical Provence.
When they are written in the Mistralian norm ("normo mistralenco"), definite articles are lou in the masculine singular, la in the feminine singular and li in the masculine and feminine plural (lis before vowels). Nouns and adjectives usually drop the Latin masculine endings, but -e remains; the feminine ending is -o. Nouns do not inflect for number, but all adjectives ending in vowels (-e or -o) become -i, and all plural adjectives take -s before vowels: lou boun ami "the good friend" (masculine), la bouno amigo "the good friend" (feminine), li bouns ami "the good friends" (masculine), li bounis amigo "the good friends" (feminine).
When they are written the classical norm ("norma classica"), definite articles are masculine lo, feminine la, and plural lis. Nouns and adjectives usually drop the Latin masculine endings, but -e remains; the feminine ending is -a. Nouns inflect for number, all adjectives ending in vowels (-e or -a) become -i, and all plural adjectives take -s: lo bon amic "the good friend" (masc.), la bona amiga "the good friend" (fem.), lis bons amics "the good friends" (masc.), lis bonis amigas "the good friends" (fem.).
Pronunciation remains the same in both norms (Mistralian and classical), which are only two different ways to write the same language.
Modern ProvenÃ§al literature was given impetus by Nobel laureate FrÃ©dÃ©ric Mistral and the association FÃ©librige he founded with other writers, such as ThÃ©odore Aubanel. The beginning of the 20th Century saw other authors like Joseph d'Arbaud and ValÃ¨re Bernard. It has been enhanced and modernized since the second half of the 20th Century by writers such as RobÃ¨rt Lafont, Pierre Pessemesse, Claude Barsotti, Max-Philippe DelavouÃ«t, Philippe Gardy, Florian Vernet, Danielle Julien, JÃ²rgi GrÃ²s, SÃ¨rgi Bec, Bernat GiÃ©ly, and many others.
- Occitan conjugation
- Languages of France
- Manuel pratique de provenÃ§al contemporain, Alain BarthÃ©lemy-Vigouroux & Guy Martin, Ãdisud 2006, ISBN 2-7449-0619-0
- Provencal Language at the Classic Encyclopedia, based on the 1911 Edition of the EncyclopÃ¦dia Britannica
- Smith, Nathaniel B.; Bergin, Thomas Goddard (1984). An Old ProvenÃ§al Primer. Garland. ISBNÂ 0-8240-9030-6.Â
- ProvenÃ§al - English Dictionary - a list of words, with some mistakes
- Modern ProvenÃ§al phonology and morphology studied in the language of Frederic Mistral (1921)