[Wikipedia-l] new wikipedias: extremaduran and galaico-extremaduran

100025727 at telefonica.net 100025727 at telefonica.net
Thu Aug 26 12:26:45 UTC 2004

The extremaduran language which I refer to is the "high extremaduran"
(probably spoken by some tens of thousands), the one considered to be
the language, derived from the historical asturleonese dialect of latin
(just as the portuguese derive from the galician-portuguese historical
latin dialect, or the spanish from the castilian historical latin
dialect). The ethnologue mixes this high extremaduran, the language,
with the "middle" and "low" extremaduran, already (and since centuries)
castilian dialects. 

What I said is that the castilian dialect of Extremadura is similar
-logically- to the extremaduran language, as the english from Cornwall
is similar to the cornish language - both share vocabulary and some
verbal and phonological features; much more in this case where
extremaduran and the language which absorved it in those territories
(spanish) are from the same linguistic family. 

The fala (or galaico-extremaduran) is a galician-portuguese language,
like the galician and portuguese (and by no means a portuguese or
galician dialect such as brazilian), so similar to spanish as the
portuguese or the galician (both with its own wikipedia). The
extremaduran language is so intelligible with spanish as the asturian
language or the aragonese (both with its own wikipedia too).

Every romanic linguistic variety is more or less intelligible to each
other, but there are degrees of comprehension, and one old high
extremaduran without having learned spanish at school has no more
comprehension of spanish than a norwegian understands swedish, or more
than a mother-tongue galician understands spanish (of course they can
understand the languages of the same family, and they usually do, but
they always loose information).

The reason why I said that more than 1.500.000 could use the
extremaduran language is to show the number of people who could be
interested in using it, the people who -like me- speak the
castilian-extremaduran dialect in the provinces of Salamanca, Cáceres,
Badajoz and Huelva (counting with the emigrated probably near  2.500.000
people).Just as one basque would be interested in using the basque
wikipedia, even if he doesn't really speak the basque language, only
because in the castilian that he speaks remains features of the old
regional language, and because of 'regional love', so to say, to defend
the "own" historical language.

But of course I am talking about languages, which by definition are not
mutually intelligible (at least to a good degree). I would never propose
to make a wikipedia in dialectal spanish from Extremadura, or dialectal
spanish from Andalusia or from Murcia, or from the american spanish
(argentinian, mexican,...). That would be an aberration, I have always
struggled with people not to propose such kind of desintegration of the
spanish domain: I speak spanish. Extremaduran spanish. But not
extremaduran. Extremaduran is a language derived from latin (through the
old astur-leonese dialect). I wouldn't accept ever something like
creating the "argentinian language" only because the argentinians may
feel they speak a different spanish, to present an example. And so
wouldn't I with extremaduran spanish. You have in me a defender of the
integration of dialects into standardized languages (so with the
extremaduran language). But of course not of absortion of the minority
languages by the official and important ones.

Anyway, apart from this, I also believe that languages should be used to
communicate with the more people possible, that is why I learned
english. But the fact that the Wikipedia is written in a lot of regional
minority languages of western Europe (where almost everyone learn at
school their country's official language, and many also english) reveals
that Wikimedia also defends the regional languages, because of its
intrinsecal cultural value and because of the attraction that causes in
its speakers (and the groups who spoke it in the past, like in the case
of the cornish or basques), speakers who other way would maybe never
read the wikipedia (if it were only in english or spanish, for example).
You have the example of the catalan wikipedia, which as far as I know
receives lots of articles - and only a few catalan-speakers cannot
communicate in spanish, and I don't think theese ones use the wikipedia
or even the internet...-. So there are a lot of people who understands
spanish and catalan more willing to use their regional language than the
spanish, that is obvious.

So: castilian/spanish of Extremadura (dialectal spanish, or dialectal
english,...) NO. But extremaduran, why not? No doubt there is a line to
be drawn between wikipedia factible languages and not factible ones - we
could say: "we will not start any wikipedias in artificial languages",
or "we will not start wikipedias in death languages", or even "neither
of them, but for the ones actually used" (like the artificial esperanto
or the death cornish, both widely accepted today as present languages).
But who could so easily say that the last two languages of Spain without
wikipedia (the others have it already) don't deserve having it? And,
most important, why? Who could say: this tongue is too similar to
spanish, while portuguese, asturian or spanish aren't?

Sorry for the big mail. Be what it be the final decision, I needed to
explain to all those who have interest about the spanish language domain
the difference between the spanish of Extremadura and the extremaduran
language, almost everywhere in the net confused and mixed altogether
(probably because they share the same name: "extremaduran").

By the way, the region of Extremadura is following a programme of
massive computer acquisition for public institutions (as a consequence
of the money saved in software, due to the use of Linex, a kind of
'Linux from Extremadura'), what makes more and more accessible the
internet to those old high extremadurans from little towns who speak the
language and have a lot of time to use the www.

[For more information on the extremaduran language actual domain you can
visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spain#Languages ; for still more
information on the extremaduran language and the extremaduran spanish
dialect you can visit http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extreme%C3%B1o ,
where it is clearly distinguished between both - the high extremaduran
and the rest. The Spanish Linguistic Organization Proel.org also has a
good map and some information at http://www.proel.org/lenguas.html . The
ethnologue information obviously mixes information about the
extremaduran language and the extremaduran spanish dialects, with a map
of the administrative region of Extremadura, and not actually its

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