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Thread: Sicilian versus Italian, Spanish and Portuguese

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    Sicilian versus Italian, Spanish and Portuguese

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    It seemed to me that the native Spanish and Portuguese speakers understood better after they heard the questions asked by the standard Italian speaker.

    Interesting that a few of the words were closer to Spanish than to Italian.


    Non si fa il proprio dovere perchè qualcuno ci dica grazie, lo si fa per principio, per se stessi, per la propria dignità. Oriana Fallaci

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    Very interesting video. The video also warns us to be careful with cognate words. As for the fact that the native of ‘Chéquia’ or ‘Tchéquia’ (Czech) is called "Checo" in Portugal, there would not be much problem in Brazil, since here we called the country as República Tcheca (Czech Republic) and not ‘Chéquia’ or ‘Tchéquia’ (Czech) and we refer to the native of the Czech Republic not as ‘Checo’, but yes as ‘Tcheco’, like in the Spanish pronunciation. Yes, for us a butchery is an ‘açougue’ and not a ‘talho’. Nice video

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    Several things caught my attention:
    First of all, I expected Sicilian (or at least the Western dialect) to be more difficult to understand. Even the oral version seems more understandable to me than the written one (if I read the words "armale" or "avutra", I don't know what they are, but if I hear them pronounced, they sound like "animale" or "altra" to me.

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    I also see several similarities with Spanish: Carnezzeria (Carnicería in Spanish), Travagghiu (as Trabajo in Spanish, instead of Lavoro), Funtaneri (Fontanero). But above all the use of the word "Cristianu" catches my attention. It seems to me that it may be due to Spanish influence. In Spain, during the Franco dictatorship, regional languages ​​were banned, at least in the first decades. According to some things I read, sometimes people were exhorted to "speak in Christian", that is, to speak in Spanish. And that influence is noticeable in Latin America (or at least, in the Rio de la Plata area), where the word "Christian" was used (and is still used in rural areas), as a synonym for "Civilized people" or even as "human being". In colonial times (and in the "desert war" against the natives in Argentine Patagonia in the second half of the 19th century) "Cristiano" was used as the opposite of "Indio". And even today you can hear in rural areas, phrases like " esa comida es para animales, no para cristianos""that food is for animals, not for Christians" ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by italouruguayan View Post
    I also see several similarities with Spanish: Carnezzeria (Carnicería in Spanish), Travagghiu (as Trabajo in Spanish, instead of Lavoro), Funtaneri (Fontanero). But above all the use of the word "Cristianu" catches my attention. It seems to me that it may be due to Spanish influence. In Spain, during the Franco dictatorship, regional languages ​​were banned, at least in the first decades. According to some things I read, sometimes people were exhorted to "speak in Christian", that is, to speak in Spanish. And that influence is noticeable in Latin America (or at least, in the Rio de la Plata area), where the word "Christian" was used (and is still used in rural areas), as a synonym for "Civilized people" or even as "human being". In colonial times (and in the "desert war" against the natives in Argentine Patagonia in the second half of the 19th century) "Cristiano" was used as the opposite of "Indio". And even today you can hear in rural areas, phrases like " esa comida es para animales, no para cristianos""that food is for animals, not for Christians" ...
    Carnezzeria - Carniceria, carniçaria are, in Portuguese, words synonymous with açougue (butchery) but, in Brazil, they are used much more in the sense of carnificina (carnage), that is, great slaughter or massacre of people. The word equivalent to Lavoro in Brazil will be trabalho (work). Similar to lavoro is what we call farming, ie, related to agricultural work, for example, soybean farming (lavoura de soja), corn farming (lavoura de milho), coffee farming (lavoura de café). Cristiano for us is a Christian, ie, Cristão.

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    Quote Originally Posted by italouruguayan View Post
    I also see several similarities with Spanish: Carnezzeria (Carnicería in Spanish), Travagghiu (as Trabajo in Spanish, instead of Lavoro), Funtaneri (Fontanero). But above all the use of the word "Cristianu" catches my attention. It seems to me that it may be due to Spanish influence. In Spain, during the Franco dictatorship, regional languages ​​were banned, at least in the first decades. According to some things I read, sometimes people were exhorted to "speak in Christian", that is, to speak in Spanish. And that influence is noticeable in Latin America (or at least, in the Rio de la Plata area), where the word "Christian" was used (and is still used in rural areas), as a synonym for "Civilized people" or even as "human being". In colonial times (and in the "desert war" against the natives in Argentine Patagonia in the second half of the 19th century) "Cristiano" was used as the opposite of "Indio". And even today you can hear in rural areas, phrases like " esa comida es para animales, no para cristianos""that food is for animals, not for Christians" ...
    The word carnicería is relatively new in Spanish. Formerly it was called carnecería and this is how the signs of these establishments were written.

    Trabajo is also a word that has been imposed in modern Spanish, but the verb “laborar” is also used (e.g., we say- dias laborables y dias no laborables, nunca dias no trabajables- non-workable Vs working days).

    Cristiano has always been used in the Iberian Peninsula and was indeed used to distinguish those who practiced this religion from the Jews and Moors. With the Reconquista, the term "old Christian" was used to distinguish them from the "new Christians" or "Marranos". In all Hispanic America, the Christians were whites born in the peninsula or “Criollos”, descendants of Spaniards born in America. The rest were mestizos or Indians, i.e. the term was used in a racist manner even though when the Indians were baptized they were always considered new Christians.

    I believe that most Spanish speakers can perfectly read a text in Portuguese or Italian, and would even understand a large part of a text in French. But without a doubt those languages are much more difficult to understand in a conversation because of the pronunciation and the speed with which they speak. Especially interesting is the case of Portuguese because even though they are very similar languages, they have to speak very slowly to be understood.

    Regarding Sicily it is normal the Spanish cultural influence because it was part of the Empire for many centuries. The Spanish bureaucracy, civil servants and soldiers brought many customs to Sicily. Thousands of Sicilians fought as volunteers in the Tercios de Infanteria-Currently there are more than 17,000 people with Spanish surnames on the island (Franco, Castro, Blanco, Calvo, Expósito, Pardo, Martínez, Pérez etc…These surnames are more frequent in Catania and Siracusa.If you are interested in the relationship between Sicily and Spain, I recommend the novel I Viceré (Los Virreyes) by Federico de Roberto.

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    Interesting that the Italian word literally means slaughter house, from macellare, or maybe literally
    butcher house.

    Cured meats are sold in a salumeria. Of course, in cities supermarkets are taking over.

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    Açougue’ (Butchery) is a very popular term in Brazil. When we are going to have a barbecue at someone's house or on a ranch and the meat that the guests are eating ends by an inesperate excess of consume (a rare fact, because the barbecue growers always sin by excess), someone asks: Is there a ‘açougue’ nearby? The answer is always positive and, normally, a group of men is already preparing to go to the nearest ‘açougue’ to choose the meat. The term Casa de Carnes (Meat House) is also used in place of ‘açougue’ by ‘açougueiros’ (butchers) who want to add some air of sophistication to their butcher shop.

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    A word also about the use of the term "cristiano". It is, or was, common all over Italy as a way of saying a "human being".

    "Nei Paesi con una tradizione consistente di adesione al Cristianesimo, come in Italia, e più accentuatamente nell'Italia del Sud, la parola cristiano viene usata per antonomasia come equivalente di uomo, creatura umana, essere umano, perché popolarmente non si concepisce che un uomo possa essere altro che cristiano. ...e quando c'erano le leggi razziali tanta gente mostrava compassione dicendo: "Quei poveri ebrei, sono cristiani pure loro", o qualche cosa di simile. Un'eco esplicita è nel noto libro di Carlo Levi: "Cristo si è fermato a Eboli", nel senso che i contadini poveri lucani, più a sud di Eboli, commentavano amaramente di non essere nemmeno più uomini, e quindi non cristiani."

    In countries with a continuous history of adherence to Christianity, as in Italy, and particularly in southern Italy, the word "Christian" came to be used as the equivalent of man, human being, because among the common people they couldn't conceive of anyone human who was not a Christian, and when there were the racial laws (under fascism), people showed their compassion by saying: "Those poor Jews, they're Christians too.". There's an echo of this in the famous book by Carlo Levi "Christ stopped at Eboli: in the sense that the poor peasants of Lucania, who lived further south than Eboli, commented bitterly that they weren't "human" anymore, and thus not "cristiani". (I would say actually that they weren't Christian because Christ never went there, and thus not human beings, or didn't live like human beings. It's a desperately sad but wonderful book.)There seems to be some similarity in Iberia.

    I don't know about French usage of the last two centuries.

    Very elderly people don't even think about it in specifically "religious" terms, if you know what I mean. It's one of those usages which is sort of "decoupled" from its older significance.

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