SVIBOR - Project code: 6-03-228


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Project code: 6-03-228

Etymologic Dictionary of Dalmatic Elements in Croatian Language

Main researcher: VINJA, VOJMIR (52351)

Type of research: basic
Duration from: 01/01/91. to 12/31/95.

Papers on project (total): 11
Papers on project quoted in Current Contents: 2
Institution name: Filozofski fakultet - Humanističke znanosti, Zagreb (130)
Department/Institute: Institute of Linguistic
Address: Ivana Lučića 3
City: 10000 - Zagreb, Croatia
Fax: 385 (0)41 51 38 34
Phone: 385 (0)1 61 20 011

Summary: Dalmatic (or 'the language of Dalmatian Romans from the Prevenetian period', P. Skok) is an extinguished independent Roman idiom which originates in urban centers of the Adriatic coastal regions after the arrival of the Croats. This idiom served as a means of communication for Dalmatian Romans separated from their homeland. In Dubrovnik it lasted until the 15th/16th century and in the town of Krk until the end of the 19th century. This work aims at investigating the remnants of this language in Croatian coastal idioms and in the idiom of the Molise Croats because is no other form has the Dalmatic language been preserved. It represents a significant element of the Croatian language and at the same time it is a separate Romance language which serves as a link between Eastern and Western Romania. Thanks to its intermediacy, Croatian has adopted numerous elements from Greek and Southitalian dialects.

Keywords: Dalmatic/Dalmatian, Croatian, Italian dialects in Southern Italy, etymology, semantics, Balcanology, etymological dictionary, Greek, Byzantine, Albanian, Romance

Research goals: The basic aim of this investigation is the determination and the lexicological, semantic and above all etymological analysis of a significant number of Dalmatic elements in the Croatian language of the Eastadriatic coast. As a non-institutionalized language is concerned that had been dying out for more than half a century and had extinguished definitely at the end of the 19th century, all that can be found out about it is hidden and assimilated in Croatian idioms of the coastal regions and in the language of the Molise Croats. This is why the project demands linguistic investigations that can, as far as methodology is concerned, be compared only to archeological probing of the ground: it is necessary to examine a big number of (especially isolated) points in order to discover - and identify as Dalmatic - elements of this origin which today have been completely croatized. The expected contribution is as follows: a) Croatistic - getting to know a very significant component of the Croatian language, and b) Romance - the determination of one of the 'missing links' in the relations between Western and Eastern Romania. In the case of optimal facilities concerning this investigation a) on the Croatian coast and b) in Molise in Southern Italy, the results of this work would at the same time represent the material for two significant projects: 1) the supplement to Skok's Etymological dictionary, and b) the description of the language of Molise Croats. Both of them, especially the latter, represent an unpostponable debt of Croatian science to the history of the Croatian language.

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Last update: 11/05/95