Ligurian language

Gallo-Romance language (for the ancient extinct language use Q36104)

Ligurian or Genoese (lìgure or zeneize) is a Romance language of the Gallo-Romance branch spoken in the Liguria region in northwestern Italy and in two communes in the Italian island of Sardinia as well as in parts of Alpes-Maritimes and Corsica in southeastern France, and in Monaco.

Ligurian / Genoese
lìgure, zeneize/zeneise
Pronunciationˈliɡyre, zeˈnejze
Native toItaly, Monaco, France
 • Liguria
 • Southern Piedmont
 • Southwestern Lombardy
 • Western Emilia-Romagna
 • Southwestern Sardinia
 • Southeastern Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur
 • Southern Corsica
Native speakers
500,000 (2002)[1]
Early forms
Language codes
ISO 639-3lij
Linguasphere51-AAA-oh & 51-AAA-og
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Ligurian belongs to the Gallo-Italic languages group within the Gallo-Romance branch and therefore differs significantly from standard Italian, which is spoken south of the La Spezia-Rimini language border; the same applies to the other northern Italian languages. They include Piedmontese, Lombard, Emilian and Romagnol.

Ligurian has many dialects, the most widespread of which is Genoese, spoken in Genoa. Another dialect of Ligurian, is Monegasque, which is spoken as a first language by the people of Monaco.

Status change

The Ligurian language, like many minority languages, is an endangered language which is disappearing more and more in recent years and may be threatened with extinction.

Only around 500,000 out of the 2,000,000 Ligurians, speak Ligurian, who are mostly older people. Because the Ligurian language is rarely passed on to the younger generations, fewer younger people speak it. That is why like the other minority languages, it is slowly being replaced by standard Italian or standard French.

Ligurian does not enjoy an official status in Italy. Hence, it is not protected by law.

Ligurian also does not enjoy an official status in France.

In Monaco, where it is known as Monegasque, it is not an official language, but it enjoys an official status and is taught in schools, where it is compulsory.

Dialects change

Dialects of the Ligurian language are:

The sign means that this dialect is extinct, meaning it has no speakers.

References change

  1. Ligurian / Genoese at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)

Other websites change

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