Page:EB1911 - Volume 22.djvu/510

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495
PROVENÇAL LITERATURE

the plural. In a great part of the south ieu (e g o) does duty as an objective, me or mi being very restricted in use. In part of Dr6 me it is the other way, mi being substituted in the nominative for ieu, which it has completely displaced. It is perha s in conjugation that the greatest changes from the older form ofpthe language are seen. Analogy, basing itself upon one or another much used form, has acted with immense force, tending to make general in the whole conjugation, without any regard to the original classes to which the various verbs belonged, certain terminations, chiefly those which were accented, and thus appeared to the popular instinct to have more significance. The result, if the tendency were Carried the full length, would be the reduction of all the three conjugations to one. Perhaps before this point is reached the patois of the south will themselves have disappeared. As the endless modifications which the language undergoes, in vocabulary and grammar alike, develop themselves in different directions, and each over an area differently circumscribed, the general aspect of the language becomes more and more confused, without the possibility of grouping the endless varieties within dialectal divisions, there being hardly any case in which a certain number of phonetic or morphological facts present themselves within' the same geographical limits. The custom has been adopted of roughly designating these varieties by the name of the ancient provinces in which they appear. Limousin (divided into High and Low Limousin), Marchese, Auvergnese, Gaston, Béarnese, Rouergat, Languedocian, Prooengal, &c.; but these divisions, though convenient in use, correspond to no actualities. Nimes and Montpellier are in Languedoc, and Arles and Tarascon are in Provence; nevertheless the dialect of Nimes resembles that of Arles and Tarascon more than that of Montpellier. Texts.-For the history of the Provengal in all its varieties there are many more materials than for any other Romanic language, not excepting even Italian or French. The literary texts go back to the 10th or 11th century (see below). For phonetic purposes many of these texts are of secondary value, because the MSS. in which they have reached us, and several of which, especially for the poetry of the troubadours, are of 'Italian origin, have altered the original forms to an extent which it IS not easy to determine; but we possess a countless number of charters, coutumes, regulations, accounts, registers of taxation, which are worthy of absolute confidence first, because these documents are in most cases original, and, secondly, because, none of the dialectical varieties having raised itself to the rank of the literary language, as happened in France with the central (Parisian) variety and in Italy with the Florentine, writers never had the temptation to abandon their own idiom for another. For a selection of that kind of documents see P. Meyer, Documents linguistiques du midi de la France (vol. i., 1909, in Svo, containing the documents of Ain, Basses Alpes, Hautes Alpes, Alpes Maritimes). It is proper to add that Provengal possesses two ancient grammars of the 13th century (the earliest compiled for any Romanic idiom)-the Donatz proensals and Razos de trobar (see below, Provençal Literature). Although very short, especially the second, which is a collection of detached observations, they furnish valuable data. The 14th-century Leys d'amors presents the language in a somewhat artificial state-the written rather than the spoken language.

Bibliography: 1. Ancient Condition.—There does not exist any comprehensive work upon the Provengal whence to obtain a gecise idea of the history of the language at its different e ochs. iez's Grarnmatik der romanischen Sprachen is still the groundwork. It gives, especially in the 3rd ed. (1869–1872), the last revised by the author, the results of extensive researches conveniently arranged. But Diez had only a slender knowledge of the language in its present state, and in his time phonology had made little progress. The French translation of MM. G. Paris, A. Brachet and Morel-Fatio (Paris, 1873–1876) was to be completed by a supplementary volume, but this expedient had to be abandoned, it having been recognized that what was wanted was not a supplement but a general recast. Meyer-Liibke's Grammatik der romanischen Sprachen (Leipzig, 1890–1899; Fr. trans., with indexes, 1890–1906), though representing a more advanced state of Romance philology, is marred by an unusual number of inaccuracies, and is of little use for the. study of Provençal. The “ Recherches philologiques sur la langue romane, " and “Résumé de la grammaire romane, " published by Raynouard at the beginning of vol. i. of his Lexique roman (1838), are entirely out of date. The "Tableau sommaire des flexions provengales, " published by K. Bartsch, in the Chrestomalhie provengale, though much improved in later editio, ns, is incomplete and often erroneous. Better is the introduzione grammatical to V. Crescini's Manualetto proz/enzale (znd ed., 1905). Grandgent's Outline of the Phonology and Morphology of Old Provengal (Boston, 1905) is also to be recommended. But the actual state of our knowledge of ancient Provençal must be sought in a great number of scattered dissertations or monographs, which will be found especially in the Romania, the Revue de la société pour l'étude des langues romanes, and other periodicals, to which may be added some academic dissertations published mainly in Germany, and the special studies upon the language of particular texts prefixed to editions of these. As to dictionaries, the Lexique roman, on diclionnairc de la langue des troubadours, bg Raynouard (6 vols. 8vo, Paris, 1836–1844), can always be use with advantage. It has been largely supplemented by Professor E. Levy in his Provenzalisches Supplement-Worterbuch (5 vols., Leipzig, 1892–1910, stops actually at letter P). The numerous special vocabularies appended by edxtors to texts published by them cannot be neglected. These yield a considerable number of words, either wanting or wrongly explained in the Lexique roman.

2. Modern Form.—The most useful grammatical Works (all done with insufficient knowledge of phonology, and under the preconceived idea that there exist dialects with definite circumscription) are J. B. Andrews, Essai de grammaire du dialecle mentonais [Mentone] (Nice, 1878), see also his “ Phonétique mentonaise, " in Romania, xii. 394; Cantagrel, “ Notes sur l'orthographies et la pronunciation languedocienne, " prefixed to La Canson de la Lauselo, by A. Mir (Montpellier, 1876); Chabaneau, Grammaire limousine (Paris, 1876), referring especially to the variety of Nontron, in the north of Périgord (Dordogne); Constans, Essai sur l'histoire du sousdialecte du Rouergue (Montpellier and Paris, 1880); Lespy, Grammaire béarnaise (2nd ed., Paris, 1880); A. Luchaire, Etudes sur les idiomes pyrénéens de la régiondfrangaise (Paris, 1879); Moutier, Grammaire dauphinoisg, dialecfe e la oallée de la Drome (Montelimar, 1882); Ruben, “ Etude sur le patois du Haut Limousin, ” prefixed to Poems by J. Foucaud, in, the Limousin patois (Limoges, 1866). Far superior in every respect are Alfred Dauzat's essays on the language of North Auvergne: Phonétigue historique du patois de Vinzelles (Paris, 1897), .Morphologie du patois de Vinzelles (Paris, 1900), Géographie phonétique d'une région de la Basse Auvergne (Paris, 1906). As to dictionaries, we may mention, among others, Andrews, Vocabulaire français-mentonais (Nice, 1377); Azais, Dictionnaire des idiomes romans du midi de la France (3 vols. 8vo, Montpellier,1877), taking for its basis the dialect of Béziers; Chabrand and De Rochas d'Aiglun, Patois des Alpes Cotliennes el en parliculier du Queyras (Grenoble and Paris, 1877); Couzinié, Diclionnaire de la langue romane-cast raise (Castres, 1850); Garcin, Nouveau dictionnaire provengal-français (2 vols., Draguignan, 1841); Honnorat, Dictionnaire provençal-française (2 vols. 4to, Digne, 1846–1847), De Sauvages, Dictionnaire languedocien-français (new ed., 2 vols., Alais, 1820); Vayssier, Dictionnaire patois-français du département de l'Aveyron (Rodez, 1879). F. Mistral's Tresor dau Felibrige, ou dictionnaire provençal-français (2 vols. 4to, 1880–1888) is the most complete of all. This dictionary takes as its basis the variety of Maillane (in the north of Bouches-du-Rhone), the author's native district, but gives, as far as possible, all the forms used in the south of France. It is by far the best of all the dictionaries of the southern dialects which have yet been published, and, to a great extent, will enable the student to dispense with all the others.  (P. M.) 


PROVENÇAL LITERATURE. Provençal literature is much more easily defined than the language in which it is expressed. Starting in the 11th and 12th centuries in several centres it thence gradually spread out, first over the greater portion, though not the whole of southern France, and then into the north of Italy and Spain. It never felt the influence of the neighbouring literatures. At the time of its highest development (12th century) the art of composing in the vulgar tongue did not exist, or was only beginning to exist, to the south of the Alps and the Pyrenees. In the north, in the country of French speech, vernacular poetry was in full bloom; but between the districts in which it had developed—Champagne, Ile de France, Picardy and Normandy—and the region in which Provençal literature had sprung up, there seems to have been an intermediate zone formed by Burgundy, Bourbonnais, Berry, Touraine and Anjou which, far on in the middle ages, appears to have remained almost barren of vernacular literature. In its rise Provençal literature stands completely by itself, and in its development it long continued to be absolutely original. It presents at several points genuine analogies with the sister-literature of northern France; but these analogies are due principally to certain primary elements common to both and only in a slight degree to mutual reaction.

It must be inquired, however, what amount of originality could belong to any, even the most original, Romantic literature in the middle ages. In all Romanic countries compositions in the vernacular began to appear While the custom of writing in Latin was still preserved by uninterrupted tradition. Even during the most barbarous periods, when intellectual life was at its lowest, it was in Latin that sermons, lives of saints more or less apocryphal, accounts of miracles designed to attract pilgrims to certain shrines, monastic annals, legal documents, and contracts of all kinds were composed. When learning began to revive, as was the case in northern and central France under the influence of Charlemagne and later in the 11th century, it was Latin literature which naturally received increased attention, and the Latin language was more then ever employed