Check Out Leonese

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uuxTdd0y4RI]
This is a sample of the Leonese language spoken in northwestern Spain. If you know Spanish or Portuguese, you might want to check it out, as it is quite similar to both.
The Leonese language is part of the complex known as Asturian-Leonese, said to be a single language. However, it is actually several languages. Leonese and Asturian are surely separate languages. In addition, Fala and Mirandese, other members of this purported languages, are in the opinion of Ethnologue also separate languages. However, Fala and Mirandese may well be intelligible with Galician.
All of these languages are more or less on the border or Portuguese and Spanish. More precisely, they are on the border or Spanish and Galician, and Galician is surely a separate language from Portuguese. Galician is sort of in between Spanish and Portuguese.
Here is a very rare sample of Leonese. Leonese is a dying language, and is only spoken by probably about 25,000 people max in the Leon near the border with northeastern Portugal. The language is seriously dying out, but there are efforts to revive it. At the moment, probably only Western Leonese, spoken near the Portuguese border, is viable. Central and Eastern Leonese are nearly extinct.
It is important to note that Extemaduran, in my opinion a separate language spoken by 500,000 speakers in Extremadura, is nothing but a very old Eastern Leonese dialect stranded in Extremadura. Mirandese in Portugal is best seen as an Extremaduran dialect stranded in Portugal, with heavy Galician admixture. Fala is more or less a similar thing. Fala is utterly incomprehensible to a Spanish speaker.
Barranquenho, really a separate language spoken in the small border town of Barranca, Portugal, is a mix between Alentejan Portuguese and Extremaduran Spanish, and thus is similar. Alentajo itself is probably a separate language from Portuguese proper. Barranquenho is essentially incomprehensible to a Portuguese speaker.
Listening to Leonese, I found it much harder to understand than Asturian, though it sounded quite similar. Leonese seemed to be closer to Portuguese than Asturian.
There is a huge language revival movement going on with Leonese, but with no state support, it’s hard to see how far it goes.

Please follow and like us:
error0
fb-share-icon20
Tweet 20
fb-share-icon20

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *