It is mostly spoken in Gascony and Béarn in southwestern France (in parts of the following French départements: Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Hautes-Pyrénées, Landes, Gers, Gironde, Lot-et-Garonne, Haute-Garonne, and Ariège) and in the Aran Valley of Catalonia.
Aranese, a southern Gascon variety, is spoken in Catalonia and has been greatly influenced recently by Catalan and Spanish. Both these influences tend to differentiate it more and more from the dialects of Gascon spoken in France. Since the 2006 adoption of the new statute of Catalonia, Aranese is co-official with Catalan and Spanish in Catalonia (before, this status was valid for the Aran Valley only).
The majority of scholars think that Occitan constitutes a single language.
Some authors reject this opinion and even the name Occitan, thinking that there is a family of distinct lengas d'òc rather than dialects of a single language. Gascon, in particular, is distinct enough linguistically that it has been described as a language of its own.
The language spoken in Gascony before Roman rule was part of the Basque dialectal continuum (see Aquitanian language); the fact that the word 'Gascon' comes from the Latin root vasco/vasconem, which is the same root that gives us 'Basque', implies that the speakers identified themselves at some point as Basque. There is a proven Basque substrate in the development of Gascon. This explains some of the major differences that exist between Gascon and other Occitan dialects.
A typically Gascon feature that may arise from this substrate is the change from "f" to "h". Where a word originally began with [f] in Latin, such as festa 'party/feast', this sound was weakened to aspirated [h] and then, in some areas, lost altogether; according to the substrate theory, this is due to the Basque dialects' lack of an equivalent /f/ phoneme. Thus we have Gascon hèsta [ˈhɛsto] or [ˈɛsto]. A similar change took place in continental Spanish. Thus Latin facere gives Spanish hacer ([aˈθer]) (or, in some parts of southwestern Andalusia, [haˈsɛɾ]).
Although some linguists deny the plausibility of the Basque substrate theory, it is widely assumed that Basque, the "Circumpyrenean" language (as put by Basque linguist Alfonso Irigoyen and defended by Koldo Mitxelena, 1982), is the underlying language spreading around the Pyrenees onto the banks of the Garonne River, maybe as far east as the Mediterranean in Roman times (niska cited by Joan Coromines as the name of each nymph taking care of the Roman spa Arles de Tech in Roussillon, etc.).:250–251 Basque gradually eroded across Gascony in the High Middle Ages (Basques from the Val d'Aran cited still circa 1000), with vulgar Latin and Basque interacting and mingling, but eventually with the former replacing the latter north of the east and middle Pyrenees and developing into Gascon.:250, 255
Note that modern Basque has had lexical influence from Gascon in words like beira ("glass"), polit ("pretty", Gascon polit/polida) to mention but a few. One way for the introduction of Gascon influence into Basque came about through language contact in bordering areas of the Northern Basque Country, acting as adstrate. The other one takes place since the 11th century over the coastal fringe of Gipuzkoa extending from Hondarribia to San Sebastian, where Gascon was spoken up to the early 18th century and often used in formal documents until the 16th, with evidence of its occurrence in Pasaia still in the 1870s. A minor focus of influence was the Way of St James and the establishment of ethnic boroughs in several towns based on the privileges bestowed on the Francs by the Navarrese kings from the 12th until the early 14th century, whereas the variant spoken and used in written records is mainly Occitan of Toulouse.
A poll conducted in Béarn in 1982 indicated that 51% of the population could speak Gascon, 70% understood it, and 85% expressed a favourable opinion regarding the protection of the language. However, use of the language has declined dramatically over recent years as a result of the Francization taking place during the last centuries, as Gascon is rarely transmitted to young generations any longer (outside of schools, such as the Calandretas).
The usual term for Gascon is "patois", a word designating in France a non-official and usually devaluated dialect (such as Gallo) or language (such as Occitan), regardless of the concerned region. It is mainly in Béarn that the population uses concurrently the term "Béarnais" to designate its Gascon forms. This is because of the political past of Béarn, which was independent and then part of a sovereign state (the shrinking Kingdom of Navarre) from 1347 to 1620.
In fact, there is no unified Béarnais dialect, as the language differs considerably throughout the province. Many of the differences in pronunciation can be divided into east, west, and south (the mountainous regions). For example, an 'a' at the end of words is pronounced "ah" in the west, "o" in the east, and "œ" in the south. Because of Béarn's specific political past, Béarnais has been distinguished from Gascon since the 16th century, not for linguistic reasons.
Gascon comprises three main linguistic areas:
Probably as a consequence of the linguistic continuum of occidental Romania and the French influence over the Hispanic Mark on the medieval times, shared similar and singular features are noticeable between Gascon and other Latin languages on the other side of the frontier: Aragonese and ultraoccidental Catalan (Catalan of La Franja) Gascon is also (with Spanish, Navarro-Aragonese and French) one of the Romance influences in Basque language.
The Aquitanians (Latin: Aquitani) were a people living in what is now southern Aquitaine and southwestern Midi-Pyrénées, France, called Gallia Aquitania by the Romans in the region between the Pyrenees, the Atlantic ocean, and the Garonne, present-day southwestern France. Classical authors such as Julius Caesar and Strabo clearly distinguish them from the other peoples of Gaul, and note their similarity to others in the Iberian Peninsula.
During the process of Romanization, they gradually adopted the Latin Language (Vulgar Latin) and Roman civilization. Their old language, the Aquitanian language was precursor of the Basque language and the substrate for the Gascon language (one of the Romance languages) spoken in Gascony.Aranese dialect
Aranese (Occitan: Aranés) is a standardized form of the Pyrenean Gascon variety of the Occitan language spoken in the Val d'Aran, in northwestern Catalonia close to the Spanish border with France, where it is one of the three official languages beside Catalan and Spanish. In 2010, it was named the third official language of the whole of Catalonia by the Parliament of Catalonia.The official spellings of towns in Val d'Aran are Aranese; for example, the Aranese spelling Vielha is used on maps and road signs instead of the Catalan and Spanish Viella.Barousse valley
The Barousse is a small region of southwestern France, including the valley of the Ourse, a left tributary of the Garonne, in the Hautes-Pyrénées, and the smaller valley of Siradan.
The main towns are Loures-Barousse and Mauleon-Barousse.Benquet
Benquet is a commune in the Landes department in Nouvelle-Aquitaine in southwestern France.Cadet Corps
A corps of cadets, or cadet corps, was originally a kind of military school for boys. Initially such schools admitted only sons of the nobility or gentry, but in time many of the schools were opened also to members of other social classes. Since the 1800s "corps of cadets" has referred to the student body of cadets at a military academy.Félix Arnaudin
Félix Arnaudin (born Simon Arnaudin, 30 May 1844 – 6 December 1921) was a French poet, photographer, and specialist in Haute-Lande folklore. In Gascony, M. Arnaudin created his collection of tales by attending gatherings, as well as at marriages and at various agricultural festivals. He left 3,000 photos at the Musée d'Aquitaine in Bordeaux.Félix Arnaudin was the first to observe Haute-Lande as a native people. He can be said to be at the same time linguist, folklorist, historian, ethnologist, photographer and writer. He became famous studying the folklore of the Landes of Gascony, at that time in full economical and social transition. His work is centered on recording Gascon language fairy tales and songs; on land, habitations, shepherd and peasants photography. He thus consecrated his life to save this heritage from fading into oblivion. His natal house became a photo exhibit managed by the Labouheyre commune.Gascon
Gascon may refer to:
Gascony, an area of southwest France
Gascon (grape), another name for the French wine grape Mondeuse noireGascon Saintongeois
This page is about the breed of dog. For the type of cattle, see Gascon cattle. For the type of language, see Gascon language.
The Gascon Saintongeois (FCI No.21) is a breed of dog of the scenthound type, recognised in two sizes, Grand (large) and Petit (smaller than the Grand, but not a small dog). Originating in France, the breed is used for hunting in packs and descends from the old Hound of Saintonge type of large hunting dog.Gascony
Gascony (; French: Gascogne [ɡaskɔɲ]; Gascon: Gasconha [ɡasˈkuɲɔ]; Basque: Gaskoinia) is an area of southwest France that was part of the "Province of Guyenne and Gascony" prior to the French Revolution. The region is vaguely defined, and the distinction between Guyenne and Gascony is unclear; by some they are seen to overlap, while others consider Gascony a part of Guyenne. Most definitions put Gascony east and south of Bordeaux.
It is currently divided between the region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine (departments of Landes, Pyrénées-Atlantiques, southwestern Gironde, and southern Lot-et-Garonne) and the region of Occitanie (departments of Gers, Hautes-Pyrénées, southwestern Tarn-et-Garonne, and western Haute-Garonne).
Gascony was historically inhabited by Basque-related people who appear to have spoken a language similar to Basque. The name Gascony comes from the same root as the word Basque (see Wasconia below). From medieval times until today, the Gascon language has been spoken, although it is classified as a regional variant of the Occitan language.
Gascony is the land of d'Artagnan, who inspired Alexandre Dumas's character d'Artagnan in The Three Musketeers, as well as the land of Cyrano de Bergerac, who inspired the play of the same name by Edmond Rostand. It is also home to Henry III of Navarre, who later became king of France as Henry IV.Gers
The Gers (French: [ʒɛʁ(s)]; Occitan: [dʒɛɾs]) is a department in the Occitanie region in the southwest of France named after the Gers River.
Inhabitants are called les Gersois.Labourdette
Labourdette is a French surname derived from Gascon language
People with the surname Labourdette include:
Elina Labourdette, French film actress
Jacques Henri-Labourdette, French architect.
Bernard Labourdette, professional road bicycle racerLandes forest
The Landes forest (La forêt des Landes in French) or the Landes of Gascony (las Lanas de Gasconha in the Gascon language), in the historic Gascony natural region of southwestern France now known as Aquitaine, is the largest man-made woodland in Western Europe. The French word, landes and Gascon lanas, mean 'moors' or 'heaths'.Landese dialect
Landese (parlar negre) is a subdialect of Gascon spoken in maritime Aquitaine in South-Western metropolitan France. Landese belongs to the Occitan language of which it is an endangered subdialect.Occitan language
Occitan (English: , Occitan: [utsiˈta], French: [ɔksitɑ̃]), also known as lenga d'òc (Occitan: [ˈleŋɡɔ ˈðɔ(k)] (listen); French: langue d'oc) by its native speakers, is a Romance language. It is spoken in southern France, Italy's Occitan Valleys, Monaco, and Spain's Val d'Aran; collectively, these regions are sometimes referred to as Occitania. Occitan is also spoken in the linguistic enclave of Guardia Piemontese (Calabria, Italy). However, there is controversy about the unity of the language, as some think that Occitan is a macrolanguage. Others include Catalan in this family, as the distance between this language and some Occitan dialects (such as the Gascon language) is similar to the distance among different Occitan dialects. In fact, Catalan was considered an Occitan dialect until the end of the 19th century.Today, Occitan is an official language in Catalonia, where a subdialect of Gascon known as Aranese is spoken in the Val d'Aran. Occitan's closest relative is Catalan. Since September 2010, the Parliament of Catalonia has considered Aranese Occitan to be the officially preferred language for use in the Val d'Aran.
Across history, the terms Limousin (Lemosin), Languedocien (Lengadocian), Gascon, and later Provençal (Provençal, Provençau or Prouvençau) have been used as synonyms for the whole of Occitan; nowadays, "Provençal" is understood mainly as the Occitan dialect spoken in Provence, in southeast France.Unlike other Romance languages such as French or Spanish, there is no single written standard language called "Occitan", and Occitan has no official status in France, home to most of Occitania. Instead, there are competing norms for writing Occitan, some of which attempt to be pan-dialectal, whereas others are based on particular dialects. These efforts are hindered by the rapidly declining use of Occitan as a spoken language in much of southern France, as well as by the significant differences in phonology and vocabulary among different Occitan dialects.
In particular, the northern and easternmost dialects have more morphological and phonetic features in common with the Gallo-Italic and Oïl languages (e.g. nasal vowels; loss of final consonants; initial cha/ja- instead of ca/ga-; uvular ⟨r⟩; the front-rounded sound /ø/ instead of a diphthong, /w/ instead of /l/ before a consonant), whereas the southernmost dialects have more features in common with the Ibero-Romance languages (e.g. betacism; voiced fricatives between vowels in place of voiced stops; -ch- in place of -it-), and Gascon has a number of unusual features not seen in other dialects (e.g. /h/ in place of /f/; loss of /n/ between vowels; intervocalic -r- and final -t/ch in place of medieval -ll-). There are also significant lexical differences, where some dialects have words cognate with French, and others have Catalan and Spanish cognates (maison/casa "house", testa/cap "head", petit/pichon "small", achaptar/crompar "to buy", entendre/ausir "to hear", se taire/se calar "to be quiet", tombar/caire "to fall", p(l)us/mai "more", totjorn/sempre "always", etc.). Nonetheless, there is a significant amount of mutual intelligibility.
The long-term survival of Occitan is in grave doubt. According to the UNESCO Red Book of Endangered Languages, four of the six major dialects of Occitan (Provençal, Auvergnat, Limousin and Languedocien) are considered severely endangered, whereas the remaining two (Gascon and Vivaro-Alpine) are considered definitely endangered.Per Noste
Per Noste is a French association founded in 1960 under the name Per Nouste with the aim of supporting and promoting the Occitan language and civilization in Gascony. Its founding chairman is Roger Lapassade. Among the 26 founder members are Robert Darrigrand, Pierre Tucoo-Chala, and Xavier Ravier. Michel Grosclaude joined them in 1965. Since its very beginnings, the association has promoted the language teaching through the publication of handbooks.The magazine Per Nouste was created in 1967 (its name changed to Per Noste in 1968). Its title later became País Gascons (1978).Per Noste acted also as a local section of the IEO until 2009. Per Noste has promoted or participated in the creation of many projects linked to Occitan language revival (Calandreta, Nadau, Ràdio País, Ostau Bearnés in Pau…)
Its activity is mainly focused on publishing books in the Occitan language of Gascony, also called Gascon language, or about Gascony.Pic Ramougn
Pic Ramougn (3,011 m) is a steep, rocky mountain in the Néouvielle massif in the Pyrenees.
It is located in the commune of Saint-Lary-Soulan within the department of the Hautes-Pyrénées, and is named after the French politician, geologist and botanist Louis Ramond de Carbonnières. Ramougn is the pronunciation of Ramond in the Gascon language.Pérès
Pérès is a French surname derived from Gascon languageVieux-Boucau-les-Bains
Vieux-Boucau-les-Bains, in Gascon language Lo Bocau Vielh, is a commune in the Landes department in Nouvelle-Aquitaine in southwestern France.
During the 1970s, an artificial lake and a touristic complex were created and named "Port d'Albret ", this complex was built in the territory of Vieux-Boucau and the nearby town Soustons. During summer, the population is between 10,000 and 15,000 inhabitants.
There are three beaches along the Atlantic Ocean and one on the lake.