Page:EB1911 - Volume 25.djvu/598

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.
LANGUAGE]
577
SPAIN


Castilian says conde, hoy, poyo, es, eran. The initial combinations cl, pi, fl, have withstood the transformation into 11 better than in Castilian: piano, pleno, plega, clamado, flanta are current in old documents ; and at the present day, although the / has come to be " mouillee," the first consonant has not disappeared (plluma, pllord, pllano — pronounced pljuma, &c). Lat. ct gives it, not ch as in Castilian : nueyt (n o c t e m), destruito (destructum), proveito (provectum), dito for ditto (dictum). D between vowels kept its ground longer than in Castilian: documents of the 14th century supply such forms as vidieron, vido, hudio, provedir, redemir, prodeza, Benedit, vidiendo, &c. ; but afterwards y came to be substi- tuted for dor dj: veyere (vide r e) , seyer {s e. d e r e),seya (se d e a t), goyo (g a u d i u m), enueyo (i n o d i u m). Initial / does not change into h: fillo, feito. Navarrese-Aragonese does not possess the guttural spirant (j) of Castilian, which is here rendered according to circumstances either by g (Fr. j) or by // (/ mouillee), but never by the Asturian x. Certain forms of the conjugation of the verb differ from the Castilian: dar, estar, haver, saber, poner readily form their imperfects and imperfect subjunctives like the regular verbs in ar and er — havieron (Cast, hubieron), estaron (Cast, estubieron), sabio (Cast, supo), dasen (Cast, diesen), poniese (Cast, pusiese) ; on the other hand, past participles and gerundives formed from the perfect are to be met with — fisiendo for faciendo (perf. fiso), tuviendo and tuvido for teniendo, tenido (perf. tuvo). In the region bordering on Catalonia the simple perfect has given way before the periphrastic form proper to Catalan: voy cayer (I fell), vafe (he has done), vamos ir (we went), &c. ; the imperfects of verbs in er, ir, moreover, are found in eba, iba (comeba, subiba, for comia, subia), and some presents also occur where the Catalan influence makes itself felt: estigo (Cat. estich), vaigo (Cat. vaig), veigo (Cat. veig). Navarrese-Aragonese makes use of the adverb en as a pronoun: no les en daren pas, no'n hi ha.

Andalusian. — The word "dialect" is still more appropriately applied to Andalusian than either to Asturian or Navarrese-Ara- gonese. Many peculiarities of pronunciation, however, are com- monly called Andalusian which are far from being confined to Andalusia proper, but are met with in the vulgar speech of many parts of the Castilian domain, both in Europe and in America. Of these but a few occur only there, or at least have not yet been observed elsewhere than in that great province of southern Spain. They are the following: L, n, r, d between vowels or at the end of a word disappear: sd {sal), so (sol), viee (viene), tiee (tiene), paa and pa (para), mia (mira), naa and na (nada), too and to (todo). D is dropped even from the beginning of a word: e (de), inero (dinero), on (don). Before an explosive, I, r, d are often represented by i: saiga (saiga), vaiga (valga), laigo (largo), maire (madre), paire (padre). Lat. / is more rigorously represented by h than in normal Castilian, and this h here preserves the aspirate sound which it has lost elsewhere; habld, horma (forma), hoder, are pronounced with a very strong aspiration, almost identical with that of j. The Anda- lusians also very readily write these words jabld, jorma, joder. This aspirate, expressed by j, often has no etymological origin ; for example, Jdndalo, a nickname applied to Andalusians, is simply the word Andaluz pronounced with the strong aspiration character- istic of the inhabitants of the province. C, z are seldom pronounced like 5 ; but a feature more peculiar to the Andalusians is the inverse process, the softened and interdental pronunciation of the s (the so-called ceceo) : zenor (senor) , &c. Before a consonant and at the end of a word s becomes a simple aspiration: mihmo (mismo), Dioh (Dios), do reales (dos reales). In the inflexion of the verb there is nothing special to note, except some instances of 2nd pers. sing, of the perfect in tes for te: estuvistes, estuvites, for estuviste — evidently a formation by analogy from the 2nd pers. of the other tenses, which all have s.

It is with the Andalusian dialect that we can most readily asso- ciate the varieties of Castilian which are spoken in South America. Here some of the most characteristic features of the language of the extreme south of Spain are reproduced — either because the Cas- tilian of America has spontaneously passed through the same phonetic transformations or because the Andalusian element, very strongly represented in colonization, succeeded in transporting its local habits of speech to the New World.

Leonese. — Proceeding on inadequate indications, the existence of a Leonese dialect has been imprudently admitted in some quarters; but the old kingdom of Leon cannot in any way be considered as constituting a linguistic domain with an individuality of its own. The fact that a poem of the 13th century (the Alexandro), and certain redactions of the oldest Spanish code, the Fuero Juzgo, have a Leonese origin has been made too much of, and has led to a ten- dency to localize excessively certain features common to the whole western zone where the transition takes place from Castilian to Galician-Portuguese.

3. Portuguese. — Portuguese-Galician constitutes the second branch of the Latin of Spain. In it we must distinguish —

(1) Portuguese (Portuguez, perhaps a contraction from the old Port«ga/ez = Portugalensis), the language of the kingdom of Portugal and its colonies in Africa, Asia and America (Brazil) ;

(2) Galician (Gallego), or the language of the old kingdom of

xxv. 19


Galicia (the modern provinces of Pontevedra, La Corufia, Orense, and Lugo) and of a portion of the old kingdom of Leon (the territory of Vierzo in the province of Leon). Portuguese, like Castilian, is a literary language, which for ages has served as the vehicle of the literature of the Portuguese nation con- stituted in the beginning of the 12th century. Galician, on the other hand, which began a literary life early in the middle ages — for it was employed by Alfonso the Learned in his Canligas in honour of the Virgin — decayed in proportion as the monarchy of Castile and Leon, to which Galicia had been annexed, gathered force and unity in its southward conquest. At the present day Gallego, which is simply Portuguese variously modified and with a development in some respects arrested, is much less important than Catalan, not only because the Spaniards who speak it (1,800,000) are fewer than the Catalans (3,500,000), but also because, its literary culture having been early abandoned in favour of Castilian, it fell into the vegetative condition of a provincial patois. Speaking generally, Portuguese is further removed than Castilian from Latin; its development has gone further, and its actual forms are more worn out than those of the sister language, and hence it has, not without reason, been compared to French, with which it has some very notable analogies. But, on the other hand, Portuguese has remained more exclusively Latin in its vocabulary, and, particularly in its conjugation, it has managed to preserve several features which give it, as compared with Castilian, a highly archaic air. Old Portuguese, and more especially the poetic language of the 13th century, received from the language of the troubadours, in whose poetry the earlier Portuguese poets found much of their inspiration, certain words and certain turns of expression which have left upon it indelible traces.

Vowels. — Lat. c, with the accent have not been diphthongized into ie, no, ue: pe (p e d e m), dez (d e c e m), born (b o n u s), pode (p o t e t). On the other hand, Portuguese has a large number of strong diphthongs produced by the attraction of an i in hiatus or the resolution of an explosive into i: raiba (r a b i a), feira (f e r i a), feito (f a c t u m), seixo (s a x u m), oito (o c t o). A quite peculiar feature of the language occurs in the " nasal vowels," which are formed by the Latin accented vowels followed by m, n, or nt, nd: be (ben e), gra (g r a n d e m), bo (b o n u m). These nasal vowels enter into combination with a final atonic vowel : irmao (g e r m a- n u s) ; also amao (a m a n t), sermao (s e r m o n e m), where the is a degenerated representative of the Latin final vowel. In Old Portuguese the nasal vowel or diphthong was not as now marked by the til (~), but was expressed indifferently and without regard to the etymology by m or n: bem (bene), tan (tantum), disserom (d i x e r u n t), sermom (s e r m o n e m). The Latin diphthong au is rendered in Portuguese by ou (ouro, a u r u m; pouco, p a u c u m), also pronounced oi. With regard to the atonic vowels, there is a tendency to reduce a into a vowel resembling the Fr. e " muet," to pronounce as «, and to drop e after a group of consonants (dent for dente) .

Consonants. — Here the most remarkable feature, and that which most distinctly marks the wear and Aar through which the language has passed, is the disappearance of the median consonants / and n: cor da (corona), lua (1 u n a), por formerly poer (ponere), conego (c a n o n i c u s), vir (venire), dor, formerly door (do lore m), paco (p a 1 a t i u m), saude (salute m), pego (p e 1 a g u s). Lat. b passes regularly into v : cavallo (caballus), fava (f a b a), arvore (a r b o re m) ; but, on the other hand, Lat. initial v readily tends to become 6: bexiga (vesica), bodo (votum). Lat. initial / never becomes h: fazer (f a c e r e), filo (f i 1 u m). Lat. c before e and i is represented either by the hard sibilant s or by the soft z. Lat. g between vowels is dropped before e and i : ley for leer (1 e-g e r e),dedv (d i g i t u m) ; the same is the case with d, of course, in similar circumstances: remir (re di mere), rir (ridere). Lat. j has assumed the sound of the French j. The Latin combinations cl, fl, pi at the beginning of words are transformed in two ways in words of popular origin. Either the initial consonant is retained while the / is changed into r : cravo (c 1 a v u m), prazer (p 1 a c e r e), fror({ 1 o re m) ; or the group is changed in ch ( = Fr. ch, Catal. x) through the intermediate sounds kj, fj, pj : chamar (c 1 a m a r e) , chao (planus), chamma (f 1 a m m a). Within the word the same group and other groups also in which the second consonant is an / produce / mouillee (written Ih, just as n mouillee is written nh, as in Provencal) : ovelha (ovic'la), velho (*v eclus); and sometimes ch: facho (fac'lum), ancho (a m p 1 u m). Lat. ss or sc before e and i gives x (Fr. ch) : paixo (b a s s u s),faxa (fascia). The group ct is. reduced to it: leito (1 e c t u m), peito (pectus), noite (n o c- t e m) ; sometimes to ut : douto (d o c t u s). Such words as frulo, reto, dileto are modern derivatives from the learned forms fruclo.