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Brief history of our language. The Italian fourteenth-century Florentine vernacular of today.

Did you know that the Italian language is based on the Florentine? Our language comes from the Vulgar Latin, spoken in Italy in antiquity; It is a Romance language and is part of the Italic group of the Indo-European family of languages. Today there are several regional variants of our language, but the modern is based on the Florentine literary Italian used in the fourteenth century by the "Three Crowns": Dante, Petrarch and Boccaccio; between 1230 and 1250 suffered the influences of the Sicilian School of Jacopo da Lentini.

In essence, the Italian standards of today comes from fourteenth-century Florentine vernacular, purified by its local connotations. But in fact, since the end of the fourteenth century the language that was used in Florence had dissociated itself from this linguistic model, which was later codified by non-Florentine literati, from Pietro Bembo in "Prose della Volgar Language". From the second half of the sixteenth century it was used for writing across the country and right from this stage the historians of the language began to speak of "Italian." Italian to English Translation Services

The Italian, however, was the everyday language for a few. In the second half of Alessandro Manzoni proposed to "wash clothes in the Arno", that is to adopt the Florentine as the official language of Italy, but ignoring that fact, the more "dialectal aspects", so that there could be a common language, given that Italy was about to become a nation; what she was proposed by his most important work, "The Betrothed". In addition to political unification, and the First World War, essential in the spread of the language was then the advent of television. Taking a step back, the first poet in the Italian language is considered Dante Alighieri, but in fact the first poems in the vernacular were of Francis of Assisi and Jacopone.

In the work "De vulgari eloquentia" Dante analyzed the "question of the vernacular", calling the attention of intellectuals of the time on what could be the literary language to be adopted. Although in the end it was chosen as an example of the Florentine Italian "purified", Dante identified in the vernacular of the literati of all Italian cities the best solution.


One wonders then how it is defined today, the Italian standards, understood as the linguistic norm for communication. There are several definitions of standard Italian, Darden (2005), for example, calls it "a language that has been artificially leveled as a result of contacts with other varieties and to 'normalizing action sets mainly from political power"; according Bonomi (2010), however, is defined as the language inherited from literary tradition, described in grammars and taught in schools and foreigners. "To conclude, we must not forget the fact - emphasized by scholars in the field - that the standard in speech is owned by a very limited number of speakers (about 1% of the population): actors of cinema and theater, voice actors, radio and television announcers who have completed courses in diction, some teachers and professors particularly sensitive topic. Michela Silla The Italian Language Italian to English Translation Services

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