The Walloon is a Langue of oil spoken in Belgium, France and in the north-eastern part of the American State of Wisconsin. She is recognized like endogenous regional language by the French Communauté of Belgium, where she is most important of the Romance languages. She is composed of 4 large dialects varieties and a standardized form. Its speakers can be called Wallons, but this term referring above all with the inhabitants of the Wallonia one prefers that of wallonophone more and more to him ( Walloon-cåzant as a Walloon).
See also: History of the Walloon term
The name Wallon comes from Walh , a very old word Germanic which was used by the German ones to indicate the populations celtophones or Romance. According to the areas, Walh changed, in particular by loans in other languages, and its direction was reduced. It is the case of Wallon which was created in the Romance with other related terms but it quickly supplanted them. Its older hard copy date of 1465 in the Memories of Jean, lord de Haynin and of Louvignies , Jean de Haynin, where it designates the Romance populations of the Burgundian Netherlands. The semantic range will be reduced still a little more with the French occupation, the Dutch mode and Belgian independence not to designate but the Belgians of Romance language more. Research in dialectology during the 19th century little by little will make the distinction between different the dialects belgo-novels , and then restricts in the linguistic field the Walloon word with the Walloon language strictly speaking.
To speak about a “birth date” for the Walloon is inappropriate, on the one hand obviously because the languages are not born in a night; but especially because the moment of the birth depends on the adopted point of view. From a strictly linguistic point of view, Louis Remacle showed that good number of the evolutions that one regards as typical of the Walloon appeared between the 8th century and the 12th century. The Walloon “was clearly and definitively individualized since 1200 or at the beginning of the 13th century”.
The surroundings of year 1600 bring like a written confirmation of the evolutions of the representations during the two former centuries: it is at that time that the French graphic system in Walloon country is essential definitively. It is at the beginning of the 17th century century that one becomes aware of the difference between the spoken language (the Walloon) and the written language (French), which allows the emergence of a Walloon literature: these texts concern the satyric para-literature and bouffonne. French was and remained the only language for the texts formal, official, etc
The Walloon language remains until the beginning of the 20th century the spoken language by the majority of the population of half Is Romance Belgium because French is there only the language of the well-read men and the higher classes. Bilingualism Walloon-French is then a reality, whether it is in the professional world or the political world. In the iron and steel industry and with the mine, the Walloon is often the language used for the training of the workmen and in many communes, the town councils are often done in the two languages.
Identification of the language
The distinction between the various regional languages of Romance Belgium was established only at the end of the 19th century by the German philologist Altenburg who specifies besides that the surface of the Walloon can neither be restricted with the inhabitant of Li2ege nor to extend to the Picardy one:
Le dialect inhabitant of Li2ege is felt like definitely more different from Picardy than the dialects of the provinces of Namur and Hainaut. Even if the current dialect of the French area bordering constitutes to some extent a link intermediate or a transition between the Walloon and Picardy and even if the southernmost varieties of the Walloon approach the rouchi, however phonetism, mainly the consonant system, shows deep differences between the Picardy one and the wallon.
From this late identification, the other endogenous languages of Romance Belgium are some Walloon times indicated like , including by their own speakers, which can involve a certain confusion.
Standardization of the language
Since the beginning of the years 1990, a group of organizers and writers of Walloon language try to revalue the system Feller transcription. This system had been created by dialectologists and for dialectologists, and this before the appearance of the modern Linguistique, with an aim of protection of a literary inheritance patoisant or the dialectologic study rather than of promotion of a modern language. They then aim the establishment of a common written standard, in a goal symbolic system and policy, for a language about which the methods spoken vary area in area, but are intercompréhensibles. This common and standardized written language is called the Wallon unified or rfondou Walloon as a Walloon.
See also: dialectal Wallonia
The Walloon is spoken in his traditional surface, which one names “dialectal Wallonia” or more rarely “linguistic Wallonia”. It gathers an important part of the Romance Belgium, plus the Wallonia de France: ten villages and a city, Givet, traditionally wallonophones, in the the French Ardennes.
The accents of the Walloon of the whole of the localities of linguistic Wallonia were studied by the Linguistic atlas of Wallonia , with the other points where one speaks about other Romance endogenous languages in Belgium. All these stresses of the Walloon were laid at contribution for the establishment of the Walloon unified or rfondou Walloon .
One can separate four distinct dialectal zones:
the dialect be-Walloon , also called inhabitant of Li2ege , is spoken in Province about Liege (except in German-speaking Communauté and in the communes of Baelen, Plombières, Welkenraedt and villages neighbouring, where one speaks the Francique ripuaire) like in north about the Province about Luxembourg, in the Val of Salm and the area of Ourthe and Aisne. The field of the inhabitant of Li2ege is subdivided according to his 4 natural areas: the Ardenne (inhabitant of Li2ege of the Ardennes ), the Condroz (inhabitant of Li2ege condrusien ), the Hesbaye (inhabitant of Li2ege hesbignon ) and the Country of Herve (inhabitant of Li2ege hervien-verviétois ).
- the dialect center-Walloon , also called Namurian , is spoken in the east about the province about the Walloon Brabant, in Hesbaye brabançonne, in the Ardennes brabançonnes, the major part of the province of Namur (except Fagne, the Namurian Ardennes and the Champagne country), in France in the boot of Givet.
- the wallo-Picardy dialect , also called west-Walloon improperly, is a dialect of transition between the Picardy one to the Namurian west and Walloon to the west whose zone is delimited by the west of the province of the Walloon Brabant (around Nivelles), in the Roman Feed, the area of Charleroi, Thudinie, the south-west of the Province of Namur (the Fagne) and by some villages from the department from the Northern (Cousolre).
- the dialect south-Walloon , also called wallo-Lorraine , is spoken in province about Luxembourg (except Gaume and district of Arlon), in the south-east of the province of Namur (the Namurian Ardennes) and in some villages of the Luxembourg (Doncols, Harlange, Sonlez, Tarchamps, Watrange,), where it is now probably extinct.
There also exists with the the United States a small zone of the Wisconsin, around Green Bay, where one speaks the Namurian , because of a rather important emigration at the 19th century.
The Walloon belongs to the languages of oil but is characterized some at the same time by its archaism coming from Latin and a significant influence from the Germanic languages which is expressed in its phonetics, its lexicon and its grammar. In the same way, Walloon phonetics is singularly preserved: the language remained rather well near to the form which it had during the Early middle ages.
The Walloon is written with the French Alphabet to which is added the Rond as a chief, diacritic superscribed, used with letter A. This letter å for example is used in the word Årdene . This diacritic does not modify the alphabetical order (exactly as for E and E in French). The name of the letters is the same one as in French, except W which is called wé (in the past double U ) and there which is called Greek I or yod .
Phonetics and phonology
Latin and + E, I, has gives as a Walloon consonants spelled affricate consonants tch and dj : vatche (cow), djambe (leg), as as former French.
- Latin remains: spene (spine), fistu (straw), biess (stupid). The Walloon thus does not know the prosthetic vowel which makes of Latin " scola" , French " école" (former French " escole"), (other examples: spissus-thick-spès, stupula-star-steûle, sternutare-to sneeze-stièrnî, stomachus-stomach-stoumak, strictus-narrow-streûts, scribere-to write-scrîre, etc
- the voiced consonants final are always deafened: rodje (red) decides exactly like rotche (rock).
- the nasal vowels can be followed nasal consonants, as in djonne (young person), crinme (cream), branmint (much).
- the length of the vowels has a phonological value. It makes it possible to distinguish for example Cu (bottom) and cût (cooked), I the hosse (he rocks it) and I the hôsse (he raises it), mass (mass) and mass (main), etc
the plural feminine adjectives in front of the name take a final - are not accentuated (except in the wallo-Lorraine dialect): compare Li djäne foye (the yellow sheet) and the djänès foyes (yellow sheets).
- It does not have there distinction of kind in the definite articles and the possessive determinants (except in the wallo-Lorraine dialect): the Walloon has Li vweture and Li to cir whereas French has, respectively, the car and the sky . In the same way, the Walloon has if cwär and if figness for French his body and his window .
There exist some Latin words which disappeared from the close Romance languages, like the Walloon dispierter and Spanish despertar (to awake), or the other resulting ones directly from bottom Latin: arincrin (araneae crinis, cobweb), fawe (fagus, beech), will cras (crassu, fat), moude (mulgere, to milk), tier or holds (termen, limit marked by a hill), ay (ay, interjection of partial approval), etc (in Dictionary inhabitant of Li2ege by Jean Haust)
- There is a big number of loans to the Germanic languages (Dutch dialects and German), for example the Walloon flåw (weak) and contemporary Dutch flauw . Among much of other loans belonging to the current language, one can quote: dringuele (tip; Dutch drinkgeld), crole (hair buckles), to splash (to splash; even root that English to spit or German spützen), Li sprewe (the starling; Dutch: spreeuw), etc It should be noted that many these loans are also found in the French of Belgium like Belgicisme S.
the qualifying adjective is often placed in front of the name: compare to the Walloon one fwärt ome and French a strong man ; ene blanke måjhon and a White House .
- syntactic Loan with the Germanic one: is construction Cwè-C ki it di that Po ene flower? (what this flower?) is translated word for word into German Was STI das für eine Blume?
Since 1100, one writes the Walloon at least in the geographical names and the basic acts justice, and the notarial acts. The writing always does not make it possible to decide how was the pronunciation (" u" of the sound “U can be a notation” or “or”). Certain notations are typically Walloon xh, ea, eie.
- At the 18th century, one continues to use some of conventions of the Middle Ages xh (Villers), oi (Theater inhabitant of Li2ege).
- At the 19th century, the writing of the Walloon was largely individual. But various tests of regulation are proposed:
- for the accent of Liege (Henry Forir) for the accent of Prussian Wallonia (All Saints' day, Nicolas Pietkin)
- for the accent of Namur (Auguste Vierset, Léopold Godenne).
- At the 20th century, one attends the generalization of the marking system Feller. The most interesting lucky finds of Cracking: notations DJ and TCH, the half-consonants W and Y, notation I of I long, or or long; the notations å and O.
- It is necessary to await the 21e century to see appearing a unified orthography, i.e. the agreement of all the users that such word is written in only one way, whatever the way in which the pronunciation evolved/moved in such or such area.
An attempt at common orthographical standard exists: the “Walloon rfondou”, whose principle is to write the same word in the same way, independently of the local phonetic differences. This Orthographe is based on diasystèmes being able to be differently marked according to the reader, following the example orthography of the Breton whose example inspired the project. The C-Ws communication try to reconcile the current phonetic uses with the old traditions (in particular reintroduction of xh , oi ) and own phonological logic of the language.
See also: Wallonisme
The French language has some wallonisms, i.e. it borrowed some terms from the Walloon. These lexical loans took place in particular in the vocabulary of the mine and the iron and steel industry, because of the precursory character of the areas wallonophones in these fields. One can quote the words coal , spoil heap , fault , fagne , firedamp , faro , pub ,…
A wallonism also indicates a caractérisque feature of the Walloon, that it is on the level of the lexicon or the pronunciation, that one finds in French spoken within dialectal Wallonia.
Authors of Walloon language
- Gabrielle Bernard
- Nicolas Defrêcheux
- Edouard Remouchamps
Cartoon as a Walloon
The editions Casterman publish the album the Jewels of Castafiore of the Aventures of Tintin in various alternatives of the Walloon. The reading of these albums makes it possible to realize of regional specificities of the Walloon. Three different versions today are counted: the èmerôde of Al Castafiore in inhabitant of Li2ege ; pindants LED Castafiore in ottintois ; the berlokes del Castafiore in aclot . A fourth Walloon version of the album, this time in carolorégien , is in preparation.
The album n°10 of Gaston Lagaffe is published in rfondou Walloon .
There exist also cartoons directly published as a Walloon, it is the case of the Li VI blue ( old blue ) of François Walthéry from which a play was drawn.
Written press as a Walloon
See also: Written press as a Walloon
The written press as a Walloon is summarized with some reviews, of which some of them have a more or less great part written in French. The means of these reviews as a Walloon extrèmement are extrèmement limited and their presentation is sometimes reduced to the simple sheet, is photocopied and fastened like the reviews Li Rantoele , Coutcouloudjoû or the Académîye of Foyants but it was also the case of the old reviews as Li pumps ås Ramons . However, certain literary companies in Walloon language manage to publish reviews of very good behavior thanks to the financial support of the Conseil of the Endogenous Regional Languages of the French Communauté of Belgium. It is the case of the El Bourdon since 1983 or of Walloon Djåzans , Singuliers and of the Walloon Cahiers .
There existed until the first third of the 20th century of the newspapers with weekly pulling as a Walloon, the El tonnia of Châlerwet was drawn until: 35000 specimens and Li Mârmite was sold until London.
The Walloon was the prevalent language of the Walloon people until the beginning of the 20th century, though the passive knowledge of French was current. Since, regional French spread itself everywhere, so much so that 30 to 40% only of the Walloon population still practice their own language, the proportions varying from 70 to 80% at the most 60 years to approximately 10% at less than 30 years. Passive knowledge is much more current: it would go from 36 to 58% in the group of age where active knowledge is weakest, C. - with-D. in the young people. Legally, the Walloon is recognized since 1990 by the French Communauté of Belgium (C. - with-D. cultural matter competent authority for the French-speaking people in the Belgian Federal state) as “endogenous regional Language” that should be studied and of which it is necessary to encourage the use. The Walloon cultural movement rests inter alia on the Walloon cultural Union (UCW), which gathers more than 200 circles of theater amateur, of the groups of writers, the committees of promotion of the Walloon at the school. A good dozen reviews appear regularly. It is also necessary to quote the Société of Walloon Language and Literature (founded in 1856 like Société inhabitant of Li2ege of Walloon Literature ), which promotes the Walloon Littérature and the study of the Romance regional languages of Wallonia (especially Dialectologie, etymology, etc).
A publisher inhabitant of Li2ege, Black Drawing, markets, beside books of local history in French, various objects (umbrella, tee-shirt, stickers) carrying maxims as a Walloon.
RTBF still devotes a little time out of radio to its dialectal emissions in unhooking, but it is far, time when one recorded for the television of the spectacles in room and outside as a Walloon, sometimes subtitled in French.
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