Most of the Languages of the Iberian Peninsula Are Halfway Between Two Other Iberian Languages

Or Asturian-Leonese, Galician, and Oliveno are halfway between Castilian and Portuguese, better. Or Catalan, like Occitan, is halfway between Spanish and French, better.

Getting even fancier, Extremaduran-Cantabrian is halfway between Asturian-Leonese and Castilian. Or how about Mirandese and Rio de Onorese, halfway between Asturian and Portuguese. Getting even crazier, how about Murcian and Andalucian, halfway between Mozarabic and Castilian. Or Eonavian-Ibino, halfway between Asturian-Leonese and Galician. Or Fala, halfway between Galician and Asturian-Leonese.

I’m not quite sure what to do with Manchengo and Aragonese. They’re just splits off the Castilian trunk. The latter is for sure a separate language. The former, could be.

The Spanish from the south of Spain is quite different from the Spanish of the north of Spain. Castilian actually came from way up in the north in Cantabria and spread south after 1100, taking out the Kingdoms of Leon, Asturias, Aragon, etc. as it moved south. The Kingdom of Castile is simply the kingdom that came out on top, so it’s language got to be the standard.

Leonese, Asturian, and Aragonese are simply the forms of Iberian Romance that were spoken in those Kingdoms.

Interest fact, Portuguese is actually a dialect of Galician and not the other way around! Not only that but Portuguese and Castilian were one language until Galician-Portuguese split off in 1300. Galician and Portuguese did not split until ~1500. The split between the two is analogous to the split between Scots and English.

Aragonese didn’t split from Castilian until later, I believe in the 1600’s. That’s why it is so close to Spanish. Asturian-Leonese and Castilian probably split ~1300 also.

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4 thoughts on “Most of the Languages of the Iberian Peninsula Are Halfway Between Two Other Iberian Languages”

  1. Castilian and Portuguese as one sounds cool, very Iberian. What’s your favorite language from Iberia, the rest of Europe, and the World outside of Europe?

    1. Castilian and Portuguese as one sounds cool, very Iberian.

      Ever heard Galician? There ya go. Oliveno is even better. Asturian-Leonese sounds like that as well but not as much as the first two.

      1. Yeah, I was obsessed with Galicia for awhile. More for its “Celtic” influence. I’d like to see a Celtic language there. I think I read Galician was more Castilianized. I searched Oliveno and your site is the one that came up, at least someone appreciates it.

        Linguistically, Argentina fascinates me with its Welsh speakers. In my opinion it’s important that Celtic languages stay alive, even though I love English. English has moved me the most thus far. It’s my first and what’s familiar.

        Latin America and Iberia are two worlds I’d like to traverse. Romance languages are beautiful. Latin is commanding, like a Roman would be.

        1. I searched Oliveno and your site is the one that came up, at least someone appreciates it.

          Oliveno is a very strange little language that is spoken on the border of Portugal and Spain, I think around Bajadoz in Spain. I am not sure which country it is in! It could be in one or the other. It doesn’t have a lot of speakers – maybe in the scores.

          It is an Alentejan Portuguese (which is already very divergent) dialect with a huge mixture of Castilian, and maybe Old Castilian at best. It’s closer to Portuguese, but Portuguese speakers can’t make heads or tails of it.

          There’s a video of it being spoken in a bar in the town. The name of the language has to do with the town it is spoken in. Just another one of those weird mini-languages that spring up on the borders of two countries where one language is spoken in one country and another language is spoken in another.

          Rio de Onorese is sort of another one. It is spoken in a town called Rio de Onoro. The town is half in Spain and half in Portugal. The people all speak the same language, but it’s neither Portuguese nor Castilian. More like a form of Mirandese.

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