A fierce enemy of the individuality of the Occitan language, and of Montpelhièr scholars Charles de Tourtoulon and Camille Chabaneau, Paul Meyer, a Paris born scholar, was of Alsatian origin, but never stopped sticking to the French supremacist ideology (one country, one language), just like his friend Gaston Paris.
In 1895, Paul Meyer published in Romania an article about the division of Occitan (he called it Provençal) in two halves, the northernmost in cha/ja versus the southernmost keeping the original latin sounds ca/ga. He published a supplement in the 1901 volume of the same Romania. To do so Meyer did not visit the boundary locations, but used the old charters and some maps. The data are incorrect due to the chosen sources. As proven by Charles Bonnier and others (but Bonnier was blacklisted by Meyer and deserves a special mention*), the text of the charters cannot reflect the spoken language of a specific area. It depends on elaborated scripta that may include local features, but generally speaking we do not have any clue about the people who actually wrote or copied the text. On a second hand, the toponymics he used were not that accurate, and sometimes may reflect changes that occurred in the limit between both halves. Two quite big cities of Southern Occitania, Brageirac (or should we write Brajairac) and Aurenja (Bergerac and Orange in French) have the typically Northern Occitan g>j change in their name.
Two necrologies by Clovis Brunel (Annales du Midi, 1918) and René Cagnat (Bibliothèque de l’École des Chartes, 1919) are added in this publication.
Click here to read or download Paul Meyer’s c et g suivis d’a en provençal. Étude de géographie linguistique (#129 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) from the IEO Paris website.
* About Bonnier, see Vincent Balnat. « Charles Bonnier (1863-1926), un philologue européen de la Belle Époque. » Zeitschrift für romanische Philologie, De Gruyter, 2020, 136 (2), pp. 337-371, available on HAL: https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-02945788/document.
You may wonder why the entries in this blog are so irregular. The main reason is that the study and the defense of Occitan is taking multiple paths, and that I am trying to progress on all of them. But stay tuned. New publications are in my to-do list, and will come sooner or later.
Louis Piat was a Paris-born lutherian, from a family deeply rooted in the neighbouring Seine-et-Marne. He spent a part of his student’s life in occitan protestant strongholds (Nerac, Montalban) but he finally passed five exotic language diplomas at the Paris “Langues Orientales” high school, and worked the rest of his life as a french foreign affairs agent. Interested by the Occitan language, he learnt it and soon published translations from Persian and from Ancient Greek. He missed some tools and this is mainly the reason for which he built them: a huge French-Occitan dictionary, and an Occitan grammar.
Click here to read or download volume 1 (A-D), here to read or download volume 2 (E-O), and there to read or download volume 3 (P-Z) of Louis Piat’s Dictionnaire français occitanien (#120 to 122 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) from the IEO Paris website.
Camille Chabaneau, a Nontronh-born postman, managed to get the position of Occitan professor in the University of Montpellier. Twice published as part of reviews, this study on the language and litterature of Limousin managed to be printed separately in 1892, with two appendixes by Alfred Leroux. Paul Meyer, from the Paris-based Romania, did not like Chabaneau was not obeying his theses on the “former language of Oc”. Necrologies by Jean Daniel and Antoine Thomas, detail the extensive coverage of the limousin language and history by Chabaneau and Leroux .
Click here to read or download Camille Chabaneau and Alfred Leroux’ La langue et la littérature du Limousin (#119 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) from the IEO Paris website.
We follow the republication of Doctor Louis Queyrat’s masterpiece with his lexicon of Chavanac language, an Occitan dialect at the boundary of Auvergnat and Limousin.
We have splitted it in two volumes for filesize reasons. Note that the digitisation by the Bibliothèque numérique du Limousin is missing a few pages.
Click here to read or download Louis Queyrat’s Le patois de la région de Chavanat. Vocabulaire patois-français first (#117 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) and second (#118) volume from the IEO Paris website.
Doctor Louis Queyrat was a dermatologist and syphilologist who is best remembered for the erythroplasia of Queyrat (a carcinoma in situ of the skin of the penis). During 25 years, Queyrat was head of the dermatology service of l’Hôpital Ricord, a venereal hospital in Paris, now Hôpital Cochin.Born in Chavanat, at the boundary of Auvergnat and Limousin dialects, he never stopped to speak his language with the many Creusois that were living in the Paris area. During a great part of his life, he prepared a complete study of his language, and decided to publish it in the 1920s.
His work has two parts, the first one, that was published in 1927, includes a grammar and a part about folklore. His work was well received by Joseph Nouailhac, one of the best specialists of the Limousine language and culture (see his in Lemouzi review).
We will also publish in DELO the second part of his work, a huge dictonary.
Click here to read or download Louis Queyrat’s Le patois de la région de Chavanat. Grammaire et folklore (#116 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) from the IEO Paris website.
Antoine Léandre Sardou was a Provence born emigrant in Paris, where he worked a the director of an institute, and published many schoolbooks. He is the father of French Academy member Victorien Sardou. He also published many books about the history, the geography, and the language of Occitania.
In 1878, he published that presentation of the Niçard language in the Annales de la Société des lettres, sciences et arts des Alpes-Maritimes, at a time everything was sought to justify the annexion to France of Savoy and Nice. The rationale is simple: as the dialect of Niça/Nice is Provençal, and Provençal is a French language, it is normal that Nice has been annexed to France.
The linguists’ criticism is sharp, like Paul Meyer’s in Romania. But Sardou is pursuing another goal. He becomes a Majoral of Felibrige (1881), the first capiscòl of the Escola de Bellanda (1882), and is honoured by Mistral by a letter in this book, and after his death by a page in the Armana Prouvençau (1895).
Click here to read or download Antoine Sardou’s L’idiome niçois. Ses origines, son passé, son état présent (#115 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) from the IEO Paris website.
The Consistory of Gai Saber is an attempt to normalize the poetic creation in Occitan that was started about 50 years after the annexation of Central Occitania to France. Guilhem Molinier is asked to write down a treatise to put the poetic creation into a very tight frame, under control of the Church and of the French power.
The Leys d’amors are not the first edition of Molinier’s work. A first one, know as Las flors del gay saber had been redacted around 1340. Nevertheless, the 1356 manuscript is shorter, and has undergone a copy edition to be easier usable by manteneires (defenders) on a daily basis. Its edition by Joseph Anglade is followed by a fourth volume that provides a comprehensive insight of the work.
We will publish later the first edition of Las flors in the DELO series.
The first volume starts with a short foreword and links to the online resources we reused to build those four volumes. We added two reviews by Clovis Brunel and Edmond Faral. The Book 1 of Leys d’amors includes a history of the creation of the Consistòri del Gai Saber, and some miscellanea: a poem about God and Trinity, a classification of sciences, a division of rhetorics, and various considerations. Click here to read or download Guilhem Moliner’s book 1 of Las leys d’amors (#111 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) from the IEO Paris website.
The second volume includes the Book 2 of Leys d’amors is a treatise of poetics, discussing sounds, rhymes, types of poetry, and even the linguistical scope of that treatise: it provides a list of “foreign” languages (French, Normand, Picard, Basque called Navarran…) and sets the Gascon as “distant from the law” (but not foreign). Click here to read or download Guilhem Moliner’s book 2 of Las leys d’amors (#112 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) from the IEO Paris website.
The third volume includes the Book 3 of the Leys d’amors, which is the grammar proper. Click here to read or download Guilhem Moliner’s book 1 of Las leys d’amors (#113 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) from the IEO Paris website.
The fourth volume of Anglade’s edition is a compilation of studies on the Leys d’amors written by Joseph Anglade, a prominent specialist of Old Occitan, which pushed to the adoption of Occitan in place of Provençal for the name of the language. Click here to read or download Joseph Anglade’s Études sur las leys d’amors (#114 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) from the IEO Paris website.
Alphonse Blanc (b. 1846) was a Languedocian scholar, who published many columns about Old and Modern Occitan at the end of the XIXth century. He was a teacher in Narbona and a member of the Archeological Commission of that city. In 1891, he publishes in the Revue des Langues Romanes this text about the Old Occitan (he uses the word Provençal) – Latin dictionaries contained in two manuscrits in the French National Library (Ms. 7657 and Ms. 7685). He shows both are late copies of the same text, dating around 1400. Instead of publishing the full text, he stresses the words that are not in the Raynouard dictionary (see DELO #52 to 63). Our foreword ends with a list of known publications of Alphonse Blanc.
The text was extracted from the Revue des langues romanes (1891) digitized and published on the Gallica website.
Click here to read or download Alphonse Blanc’s Vocabulaire Provençal-Latin (#110 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) from the IEO Paris website.
Giovenale Vegezzi Ruscalla (1799-1885) was a Romance languages specialist belonging to so-called pre-Ascolian linguists. His research was as focused as much on history and ethnology (he coined the word in Italian) as on language.
He gathered material on the Piedmontese dialect but was also interested by the Occitan spoken in the Waldensian Valleys. As he was granted a project to draw an ethnic map of the newly unified Italy, he published that article “Colonia piemontese in Calabria. Studio etnografico” about the Guardia Piemontese Occitans, in the 1862 issue of the Rivista contemporanea. At that time Guardia was not yet called Piemontese, and Vegezzi wrote the rationale to change its name.
Vegezzi also published a manifest for keeping Niça inside the Kingdom of Italy (La nazionalità di Nizza, 1860) and another one to eradicate the use of French in the Waldensian Valleys and the Valley of Aoste (Diritto e necessità di abrogare il francese come lingua ufficiale in alcune valli della provincia di Torino.)
Vegezzi’s main interest of study was not Occitan, but Romania and the Romanian language: he taught it in the Turin university until he retired.
The text was extracted from the Rivista contemporanea digitized and published on the Internet Archive.
Click here to read or download Giovenale Vegezzi Ruscalla’s Colonia piemontese in Calabria. Studio etnografico (#109 of the Documents pour l’étude de la langue occitane series) from the IEO Paris website.