Catalan language

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"Catala" redirects here. Catalan language_sentence_0

For the ship, see SS Catala. Catalan language_sentence_1

For the surname, see Catalá. Catalan language_sentence_2

Catalan language_table_infobox_0

Catalan/ValencianCatalan language_header_cell_0_0_0
PronunciationCatalan language_header_cell_0_1_0 [kətəˈla/[valensiˈaCatalan language_cell_0_1_1
Native toCatalan language_header_cell_0_2_0 Spain, Andorra, France, ItalyCatalan language_cell_0_2_1
EthnicityCatalan language_header_cell_0_3_0 Aragonese people, Balears, Catalans, ValenciansCatalan language_cell_0_3_1
Native speakersCatalan language_header_cell_0_4_0 4.1 million (2012)

Total number of speakers: More than 10 million (L1 plus L2; 2018)Catalan language_cell_0_4_1

Language familyCatalan language_header_cell_0_5_0 Indo-EuropeanCatalan language_cell_0_5_1
Early formCatalan language_header_cell_0_6_0 Old CatalanCatalan language_cell_0_6_1
Standard formsCatalan language_header_cell_0_7_0 Catalan (regulated by the IEC)

Valencian (regulated by the AVL)Catalan language_cell_0_7_1

Writing systemCatalan language_header_cell_0_8_0 Latin (Catalan alphabet)

Catalan BrailleCatalan language_cell_0_8_1

Signed formsCatalan language_header_cell_0_9_0 Signed CatalanCatalan language_cell_0_9_1
Official statusCatalan language_header_cell_0_10_0
Official language inCatalan language_header_cell_0_11_0 Catalan language_cell_0_11_1
Recognised minority

language inCatalan language_header_cell_0_12_0

Catalan language_cell_0_12_1
Regulated byCatalan language_header_cell_0_13_0 Institut d'Estudis Catalans

Acadèmia Valenciana de la LlenguaCatalan language_cell_0_13_1

Language codesCatalan language_header_cell_0_14_0
ISO 639-1Catalan language_header_cell_0_15_0 Catalan language_cell_0_15_1
ISO 639-2Catalan language_header_cell_0_16_0 Catalan language_cell_0_16_1
ISO 639-3Catalan language_header_cell_0_17_0 Catalan language_cell_0_17_1
GlottologCatalan language_header_cell_0_18_0 Catalan language_cell_0_18_1
LinguasphereCatalan language_header_cell_0_19_0 51-AAA-eCatalan language_cell_0_19_1

Catalan (/ˈkætələn, -æn, ˌkætəˈlæn/; autonym: català; Eastern Catalan: [kətəˈla), known in the Valencian Community and Carche as Valencian, is a Western Romance language derived from Vulgar Latin. Catalan language_sentence_3

It is the official language of Andorra, and a co-official language of three autonomous communities in eastern Spain: Catalonia, the Valencian Community and the Balearic Islands. Catalan language_sentence_4

It also has semi-official status in the Italian comune of Alghero. Catalan language_sentence_5

It is also spoken in the Pyrénées-Orientales department of France and in two further areas in eastern Spain: the eastern strip of Aragon and the Carche area in the Region of Murcia. Catalan language_sentence_6

The Catalan/Valencian-speaking territories are often called the Països Catalans or "Catalan Countries". Catalan language_sentence_7

The language evolved from Vulgar Latin in the Middle Ages around the eastern Pyrenees. Catalan language_sentence_8

Nineteenth-century Spain saw a Catalan literary revival, culminating in the early 1900s. Catalan language_sentence_9

Etymology and pronunciation Catalan language_section_0

Main article: Catalonia § Etymology and pronunciation Catalan language_sentence_10

The word Catalan is derived from the territorial name of Catalonia, itself of disputed etymology. Catalan language_sentence_11

The main theory suggests that Catalunya (Latin Gathia Launia) derives from the name Gothia or Gauthia ("Land of the Goths"), since the origins of the Catalan counts, lords and people were found in the March of Gothia, whence Gothland > Gothlandia > Gothalania > Catalonia theoretically derived. Catalan language_sentence_12

In English, the term referring to a person first appears in the mid 14th century as Catelaner, followed in the 15th century as Catellain (from French). Catalan language_sentence_13

It is attested a language name since at least 1652. Catalan language_sentence_14

The word Catalan can be pronounced in English as /ˈkætələn/, /ˈkætəlæn/ or /ˌkætəˈlæn/. Catalan language_sentence_15

The endonym is pronounced [kətəˈla in the Eastern Catalan dialects, and [kataˈla in the Western dialects. Catalan language_sentence_16

In the Valencian Community and Carche, the term valencià [valensiˈa is frequently used instead. Catalan language_sentence_17

Thus, the name "Valencian", although often employed for referring to the varieties specific to the Valencian Community and Carche, is also used by Valencians as a name for the language as a whole, synonymous with "Catalan". Catalan language_sentence_18

Both uses of the term have their respective entries in the dictionaries by the AVL and the IEC. Catalan language_sentence_19

See also status of Valencian below. Catalan language_sentence_20

History Catalan language_section_1

Further information: History of Catalan Catalan language_sentence_21

Middle Ages Catalan language_section_2

Further information: Old Catalan and Phonological history of Catalan Catalan language_sentence_22

By the 9th century, Catalan had evolved from Vulgar Latin on both sides of the eastern end of the Pyrenees, as well as the territories of the Roman province of Hispania Tarraconensis to the south. Catalan language_sentence_23

From the 8th century onwards the Catalan counts extended their territory southwards and westwards at the expense of the Muslims, bringing their language with them. Catalan language_sentence_24

This process was given definitive impetus with the separation of the County of Barcelona from the Carolingian Empire in 988. Catalan language_sentence_25

In the 11th century, documents written in macaronic Latin begin to show Catalan elements, with texts written almost completely in Romance appearing by 1080. Catalan language_sentence_26

Old Catalan shared many features with Gallo-Romance, diverging from Old Occitan between the 11th and 14th centuries. Catalan language_sentence_27

During the 11th and 12th centuries the Catalan rulers expanded up to north of the Ebro river, and in the 13th century they conquered the Land of Valencia and the Balearic Islands. Catalan language_sentence_28

The city of Alghero in Sardinia was repopulated with Catalan speakers in the 14th century. Catalan language_sentence_29

The language also reached Murcia, which became Spanish-speaking in the 15th century. Catalan language_sentence_30

In the Low Middle Ages, Catalan went through a golden age, reaching a peak of maturity and cultural richness. Catalan language_sentence_31

Examples include the work of Majorcan polymath Ramon Llull (1232–1315), the Four Great Chronicles (13th–14th centuries), and the Valencian school of poetry culminating in Ausiàs March (1397–1459). Catalan language_sentence_32

By the 15th century, the city of Valencia had become the sociocultural center of the Crown of Aragon, and Catalan was present all over the Mediterranean world. Catalan language_sentence_33

During this period, the Royal Chancery propagated a highly standardized language. Catalan language_sentence_34

Catalan was widely used as an official language in Sicily until the 15th century, and in Sardinia until the 17th. Catalan language_sentence_35

During this period, the language was what Costa Carreras terms "one of the 'great languages' of medieval Europe". Catalan language_sentence_36

Martorell's outstanding novel of chivalry Tirant lo Blanc (1490) shows a transition from Medieval to Renaissance values, something that can also be seen in Metge's work. Catalan language_sentence_37

The first book produced with movable type in the Iberian Peninsula was printed in Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_38

Start of the modern era Catalan language_section_3

With the union of the crowns of Castille and Aragon in 1479, the use of Spanish gradually became more prestigious and marked the start of the decline of Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_39

Starting in the 16th century, Catalan literature came under the influence of Spanish, and the urban and literary classes became bilingual. Catalan language_sentence_40

With the Treaty of the Pyrenees (1659), Spain ceded the northern part of Catalonia to France, and soon thereafter the local Catalan varieties came under the influence of French, which in 1700 became the sole official language of the region. Catalan language_sentence_41

Shortly after the French Revolution (1789), the French First Republic prohibited official use of, and enacted discriminating policies against, the regional languages of France, such as Catalan, Alsatian, Breton, Occitan, Flemish, and Basque. Catalan language_sentence_42

France: 19th to 20th centuries Catalan language_section_4

See also: Language policy in France, Vergonha, and Patois Catalan language_sentence_43

Following the French establishment of the colony of Algeria from 1830 onward, it received several waves of Catalan-speaking settlers. Catalan language_sentence_44

People from the Spanish Alacant province settled around Oran, whereas Algiers received immigration from Northern Catalonia and Menorca. Catalan language_sentence_45

Their speech was known as patuet. Catalan language_sentence_46

By 1911, the number of Catalan speakers was around 100,000. Catalan language_sentence_47

After the declaration of independence of Algeria in 1962, almost all the Catalan speakers fled to Northern Catalonia (as Pieds-Noirs) or Alacant. Catalan language_sentence_48

The government of France formally recognizes only French as an official language. Catalan language_sentence_49

Nevertheless, on 10 December 2007, the General Council of the Pyrénées-Orientales officially recognized Catalan as one of the languages of the department and seeks to further promote it in public life and education. Catalan language_sentence_50

Spain: 18th to 20th centuries Catalan language_section_5

See also: Nueva Planta decrees, Language politics in Spain under Franco, and Anti-Catalanism Catalan language_sentence_51

The decline of Catalan continued in the 16th and 17th centuries. Catalan language_sentence_52

The defeat of the pro-Habsburg coalition in the War of Spanish Succession (1714) initiated a series of laws which, among other centralizing measures, imposed the use of Spanish in legal documentation all over Spain. Catalan language_sentence_53

However, the 19th century saw a Catalan literary revival (Renaixença), which has continued up to the present day. Catalan language_sentence_54

This period starts with Aribau's Ode to the Homeland (1833); followed in the second half of the 19th century, and the early 20th by the work of Verdaguer (poetry), Oller (realist novel), and Guimerà (drama). Catalan language_sentence_55

In the 19th century, the region of Carche, in the province of Murcia was repopulated with Catalan speakers from the Land of Valencia. Catalan language_sentence_56

The Second Spanish Republic (1931–1939) saw a brief period of tolerance, with most restrictions against Catalan being lifted. Catalan language_sentence_57

Despite orthographic standardization in 1913 and the official status of the language during the Second Spanish Republic, the Francoist dictatorship banned the use of Catalan in schools and in the public administration between 1939 and 1975. Catalan language_sentence_58

Franco's desire for a homogenous Spanish population resonated with some Catalonians in favor of his regime, primarily members of the upper class, who began to reject the use of Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_59

In addition to the loss of prestige for Catalan and the prohibition of its use in schools, migration during the 1950s into Catalonia from other parts of Spain also contributed to the diminished use of the language. Catalan language_sentence_60

These migrants were often unaware of the existence of Catalan, and thus felt no need to learn or use it. Catalan language_sentence_61

Despite all of these hardships, Catalan continued to be used privately within households, and was able to survive after the end of Franco's dictatorship. Catalan language_sentence_62

Present day Catalan language_section_6

Since the Spanish transition to democracy (1975–1982), Catalan has been institutionalized as an official language, language of education, and language of mass media; all of which have contributed to its increased prestige. Catalan language_sentence_63

In Catalonia, there is an unparalleled large bilingual European non-state linguistic community. Catalan language_sentence_64

The teaching of Catalan is mandatory in all schools, but it is possible to use Spanish for studying in the public education system of Catalonia in two situations – if the teacher assigned to a class chooses to use Spanish, or during the learning process of one or more recently arrived immigrant students. Catalan language_sentence_65

There is also some intergenerational shift towards Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_66

According to the Statistical Institute of Catalonia, in 2013 the Catalan language is the second most commonly used in Catalonia, after Spanish, as a native or self-defining language: 7% of the population self-identifies with both Catalan and Spanish equally, 36.4% with Catalan and 47.5% only Spanish. Catalan language_sentence_67

In 2003 the same studies concluded no language preference for self-identification within the population above 15 years old: 5% self-identified with both languages, 44.3% with Catalan and 47.5 with Spanish. Catalan language_sentence_68

To promote use of Catalan, the Generalitat de Catalunya (Catalonia's official Autonomous government) spends part of its annual budget on the promotion of the use of Catalan in Catalonia and in other territories, with entities such as Consorci per a la Normalització Lingüística. Catalan language_sentence_69

(Consortium for Linguistic Normalization) Catalan language_sentence_70

In Andorra, Catalan has always been the sole official language. Catalan language_sentence_71

Since the promulgation of the 1993 constitution, several policies favoring Catalan have been enforced, like Catalan medium education. Catalan language_sentence_72

On the other hand, there are several language shift processes currently taking place. Catalan language_sentence_73

In the Northern Catalonia area of France, Catalan has followed the same trend as the other minority languages of France, with most of its native speakers being 60 or older (as of 2004). Catalan language_sentence_74

Catalan is studied as a foreign language by 30% of the primary education students, and by 15% of the secondary. Catalan language_sentence_75

The cultural association La Bressola promotes a network of community-run schools engaged in Catalan language immersion programs. Catalan language_sentence_76

In Alicante province, Catalan is being replaced by Spanish and in Alghero by Italian. Catalan language_sentence_77

There is also well ingrained diglossia in the Valencian Community, Ibiza, and to a lesser extent, in the rest of the Balearic islands. Catalan language_sentence_78

Classification and relationship with other Romance languages Catalan language_section_7

One classification of Catalan is given by Pèire Bèc: Catalan language_sentence_79

Catalan language_unordered_list_0

However, the ascription of Catalan to the Occitano-Romance branch of Gallo-Romance languages is not shared by all linguists and philologists, particularly among Spanish ones, such as Ramón Menéndez Pidal. Catalan language_sentence_80

Catalan bears varying degrees of similarity to the linguistic varieties subsumed under the cover term Occitan language (see also differences between Occitan and Catalan and Gallo-Romance languages). Catalan language_sentence_81

Thus, as it should be expected from closely related languages, Catalan today shares many traits with other Romance languages. Catalan language_sentence_82

Relationship with other Romance languages Catalan language_section_8

Catalan shares many traits with the other neighboring Romance languages (Occitan, French, Italian, Sardinian as well as Spanish and Portuguese among others). Catalan language_sentence_83

However, despite being spoken mostly on the Iberian Peninsula, Catalan has marked differences with the Iberian Romance group (Spanish and Portuguese) in terms of pronunciation, grammar, and especially vocabulary; showing instead its closest affinity with languages native to France and northern Italy, particularly Occitan and to a lesser extent Gallo-Romance (Franco-Provençal, French, Gallo-Italian). Catalan language_sentence_84

According to Ethnologue, the lexical similarity between Catalan and other Romance languages is: 87% with Italian; 85% with Portuguese and Spanish; 76% with Ladin; 75% with Sardinian; and 73% with Romanian. Catalan language_sentence_85

Catalan language_table_general_1

Lexical comparison of 24 words among Romance languages: 17 cognates with Gallo-Romance, 5 isoglosses with Iberian Romance, 3 isoglosses with Occitan, and 1 unique word.Catalan language_table_caption_1
GlossCatalan language_header_cell_1_0_0 CatalanCatalan language_header_cell_1_0_1 OccitanCatalan language_header_cell_1_0_2 (Campidanese) SardinianCatalan language_header_cell_1_0_3 ItalianCatalan language_header_cell_1_0_4 FrenchCatalan language_header_cell_1_0_5 SpanishCatalan language_header_cell_1_0_6 PortugueseCatalan language_header_cell_1_0_7 RomanianCatalan language_header_cell_1_0_8
cousinCatalan language_cell_1_1_0 cosíCatalan language_cell_1_1_1 cosinCatalan language_cell_1_1_2 fradiliCatalan language_cell_1_1_3 cuginoCatalan language_cell_1_1_4 cousinCatalan language_cell_1_1_5 primoCatalan language_cell_1_1_6 primoCatalan language_cell_1_1_7 vărCatalan language_cell_1_1_8
brotherCatalan language_cell_1_2_0 germàCatalan language_cell_1_2_1 fraireCatalan language_cell_1_2_2 fradiCatalan language_cell_1_2_3 fratelloCatalan language_cell_1_2_4 frèreCatalan language_cell_1_2_5 hermanoCatalan language_cell_1_2_6 irmãoCatalan language_cell_1_2_7 frateCatalan language_cell_1_2_8
nephewCatalan language_cell_1_3_0 nebotCatalan language_cell_1_3_1 nebotCatalan language_cell_1_3_2 nebodiCatalan language_cell_1_3_3 nipoteCatalan language_cell_1_3_4 neveuCatalan language_cell_1_3_5 sobrinoCatalan language_cell_1_3_6 sobrinhoCatalan language_cell_1_3_7 nepotCatalan language_cell_1_3_8
summerCatalan language_cell_1_4_0 estiuCatalan language_cell_1_4_1 estiuCatalan language_cell_1_4_2 istadiCatalan language_cell_1_4_3 estateCatalan language_cell_1_4_4 étéCatalan language_cell_1_4_5 verano, estíoCatalan language_cell_1_4_6 verão, estioCatalan language_cell_1_4_7 varăCatalan language_cell_1_4_8
eveningCatalan language_cell_1_5_0 vespreCatalan language_cell_1_5_1 ser, vèspreCatalan language_cell_1_5_2 seruCatalan language_cell_1_5_3 seraCatalan language_cell_1_5_4 soirCatalan language_cell_1_5_5 tarde, nocheCatalan language_cell_1_5_6 tarde, serãoCatalan language_cell_1_5_7 searăCatalan language_cell_1_5_8
morningCatalan language_cell_1_6_0 matíCatalan language_cell_1_6_1 matinCatalan language_cell_1_6_2 mangianuCatalan language_cell_1_6_3 mattinaCatalan language_cell_1_6_4 matinCatalan language_cell_1_6_5 mañanaCatalan language_cell_1_6_6 manhã, matinaCatalan language_cell_1_6_7 dimineațăCatalan language_cell_1_6_8
frying panCatalan language_cell_1_7_0 paellaCatalan language_cell_1_7_1 padenaCatalan language_cell_1_7_2 paellaCatalan language_cell_1_7_3 padellaCatalan language_cell_1_7_4 poêleCatalan language_cell_1_7_5 sarténCatalan language_cell_1_7_6 frigideira, fritadeiraCatalan language_cell_1_7_7 tigaieCatalan language_cell_1_7_8
bedCatalan language_cell_1_8_0 llitCatalan language_cell_1_8_1 lièch, lèitCatalan language_cell_1_8_2 letuCatalan language_cell_1_8_3 lettoCatalan language_cell_1_8_4 litCatalan language_cell_1_8_5 cama, lechoCatalan language_cell_1_8_6 cama, leitoCatalan language_cell_1_8_7 patCatalan language_cell_1_8_8
birdCatalan language_cell_1_9_0 ocell, auCatalan language_cell_1_9_1 aucèlCatalan language_cell_1_9_2 pilloniCatalan language_cell_1_9_3 uccelloCatalan language_cell_1_9_4 oiseauCatalan language_cell_1_9_5 ave, pájaroCatalan language_cell_1_9_6 ave, pássaroCatalan language_cell_1_9_7 pasăreCatalan language_cell_1_9_8
dogCatalan language_cell_1_10_0 gos, caCatalan language_cell_1_10_1 gos, canhCatalan language_cell_1_10_2 caniCatalan language_cell_1_10_3 caneCatalan language_cell_1_10_4 chienCatalan language_cell_1_10_5 perro, canCatalan language_cell_1_10_6 cão, cachorroCatalan language_cell_1_10_7 câineCatalan language_cell_1_10_8
plumCatalan language_cell_1_11_0 prunaCatalan language_cell_1_11_1 prunaCatalan language_cell_1_11_2 prunaCatalan language_cell_1_11_3 prugnaCatalan language_cell_1_11_4 pruneCatalan language_cell_1_11_5 ciruelaCatalan language_cell_1_11_6 ameixaCatalan language_cell_1_11_7 prunăCatalan language_cell_1_11_8
butterCatalan language_cell_1_12_0 mantegaCatalan language_cell_1_12_1 bodreCatalan language_cell_1_12_2 burru, butiruCatalan language_cell_1_12_3 burroCatalan language_cell_1_12_4 beurreCatalan language_cell_1_12_5 mantequilla, mantecaCatalan language_cell_1_12_6 manteigaCatalan language_cell_1_12_7 untCatalan language_cell_1_12_8
pieceCatalan language_cell_1_13_0 trosCatalan language_cell_1_13_1 tròç, petaçCatalan language_cell_1_13_2 arroguCatalan language_cell_1_13_3 pezzoCatalan language_cell_1_13_4 morceau, pièceCatalan language_cell_1_13_5 pedazo, trozoCatalan language_cell_1_13_6 pedaço, bocadoCatalan language_cell_1_13_7 bucatăCatalan language_cell_1_13_8
grayCatalan language_cell_1_14_0 grisCatalan language_cell_1_14_1 grisCatalan language_cell_1_14_2 canuCatalan language_cell_1_14_3 grigioCatalan language_cell_1_14_4 grisCatalan language_cell_1_14_5 gris, pardoCatalan language_cell_1_14_6 cinza, grisCatalan language_cell_1_14_7 gri, sur, cenușiuCatalan language_cell_1_14_8
hotCatalan language_cell_1_15_0 calentCatalan language_cell_1_15_1 caudCatalan language_cell_1_15_2 callentiCatalan language_cell_1_15_3 caldoCatalan language_cell_1_15_4 chaudCatalan language_cell_1_15_5 calienteCatalan language_cell_1_15_6 quenteCatalan language_cell_1_15_7 fierbinteCatalan language_cell_1_15_8
too muchCatalan language_cell_1_16_0 massaCatalan language_cell_1_16_1 tròpCatalan language_cell_1_16_2 tropuCatalan language_cell_1_16_3 troppoCatalan language_cell_1_16_4 tropCatalan language_cell_1_16_5 demasiadoCatalan language_cell_1_16_6 demais, demasiadoCatalan language_cell_1_16_7 preaCatalan language_cell_1_16_8
to wantCatalan language_cell_1_17_0 volerCatalan language_cell_1_17_1 vòlerCatalan language_cell_1_17_2 bolli(ri)Catalan language_cell_1_17_3 volereCatalan language_cell_1_17_4 vouloirCatalan language_cell_1_17_5 quererCatalan language_cell_1_17_6 quererCatalan language_cell_1_17_7 a vreaCatalan language_cell_1_17_8
to takeCatalan language_cell_1_18_0 prendreCatalan language_cell_1_18_1 prene, prendreCatalan language_cell_1_18_2 pigaiCatalan language_cell_1_18_3 prendereCatalan language_cell_1_18_4 prendreCatalan language_cell_1_18_5 tomar, prenderCatalan language_cell_1_18_6 apanhar, levarCatalan language_cell_1_18_7 a luaCatalan language_cell_1_18_8
to prayCatalan language_cell_1_19_0 pregarCatalan language_cell_1_19_1 pregarCatalan language_cell_1_19_2 pregaiCatalan language_cell_1_19_3 pregareCatalan language_cell_1_19_4 prierCatalan language_cell_1_19_5 orarCatalan language_cell_1_19_6 orar, rezar, pregarCatalan language_cell_1_19_7 a se rugaCatalan language_cell_1_19_8
to askCatalan language_cell_1_20_0 demanar/preguntarCatalan language_cell_1_20_1 demandarCatalan language_cell_1_20_2 dimandai, preguntaiCatalan language_cell_1_20_3 domandareCatalan language_cell_1_20_4 demanderCatalan language_cell_1_20_5 pedir, preguntarCatalan language_cell_1_20_6 pedir, perguntarCatalan language_cell_1_20_7 a cere, a întrebaCatalan language_cell_1_20_8
to searchCatalan language_cell_1_21_0 cercar/buscarCatalan language_cell_1_21_1 cercarCatalan language_cell_1_21_2 circaiCatalan language_cell_1_21_3 cercareCatalan language_cell_1_21_4 chercherCatalan language_cell_1_21_5 buscarCatalan language_cell_1_21_6 procurar, buscarCatalan language_cell_1_21_7 a căutaCatalan language_cell_1_21_8
to arriveCatalan language_cell_1_22_0 arribarCatalan language_cell_1_22_1 arribarCatalan language_cell_1_22_2 arribaiCatalan language_cell_1_22_3 arrivareCatalan language_cell_1_22_4 arriverCatalan language_cell_1_22_5 llegar, arribarCatalan language_cell_1_22_6 chegarCatalan language_cell_1_22_7 a ajungeCatalan language_cell_1_22_8
to speakCatalan language_cell_1_23_0 parlarCatalan language_cell_1_23_1 parlarCatalan language_cell_1_23_2 chistionnai, fueddaiCatalan language_cell_1_23_3 parlareCatalan language_cell_1_23_4 parlerCatalan language_cell_1_23_5 hablar, parlarCatalan language_cell_1_23_6 falar, palrarCatalan language_cell_1_23_7 a vorbiCatalan language_cell_1_23_8
to eatCatalan language_cell_1_24_0 menjarCatalan language_cell_1_24_1 manjarCatalan language_cell_1_24_2 pappaiCatalan language_cell_1_24_3 mangiareCatalan language_cell_1_24_4 mangerCatalan language_cell_1_24_5 comer (manyar in lunfardo; papear in slang)Catalan language_cell_1_24_6 comer (papar in slang), manjarCatalan language_cell_1_24_7 a mâncaCatalan language_cell_1_24_8

Catalan language_table_general_2

Catalan and Spanish cognates with different meaningsCatalan language_table_caption_2
LatinCatalan language_header_cell_2_0_0 CatalanCatalan language_header_cell_2_0_1 SpanishCatalan language_header_cell_2_0_3
Catalan language_cell_2_1_0 Catalan language_cell_2_1_1 "to bring closer"Catalan language_cell_2_1_2 Catalan language_cell_2_1_3 "to put to bed"Catalan language_cell_2_1_4
Catalan language_cell_2_2_0 Catalan language_cell_2_2_1 "to remove;

wake up"Catalan language_cell_2_2_2

Catalan language_cell_2_2_3 "to take"Catalan language_cell_2_2_4
Catalan language_cell_2_3_0 Catalan language_cell_2_3_1 "to remove"Catalan language_cell_2_3_2 Catalan language_cell_2_3_3 "to bring"Catalan language_cell_2_3_4
Catalan language_cell_2_4_0 Catalan language_cell_2_4_1 "to search"Catalan language_cell_2_4_2 Catalan language_cell_2_4_3 "to fence"Catalan language_cell_2_4_4
Catalan language_cell_2_5_0 Catalan language_cell_2_5_1 "to bury"Catalan language_cell_2_5_2 Catalan language_cell_2_5_3 "to hang"Catalan language_cell_2_5_4
Catalan language_cell_2_6_0 Catalan language_cell_2_6_1 "wife"Catalan language_cell_2_6_2 Catalan language_cell_2_6_3 "woman or wife"Catalan language_cell_2_6_4

During much of its history, and especially during the Francoist dictatorship (1939–1975), the Catalan language was ridiculed as a mere dialect of Spanish. Catalan language_sentence_86

This view, based on political and ideological considerations, has no linguistic validity. Catalan language_sentence_87

Spanish and Catalan have important differences in their sound systems, lexicon, and grammatical features, placing the language in features closer to Occitan (and French). Catalan language_sentence_88

There is evidence that, at least from the 2nd century a.d., the vocabulary and phonology of Roman Tarraconensis was different from the rest of Roman Hispania. Catalan language_sentence_89

Differentiation arose generally because Spanish, Asturian, and Galician-Portuguese share certain peripheral archaisms (Spanish hervir, Asturian and Portuguese ferver vs. Catalan bullir, Occitan bolir "to boil") and innovatory regionalisms (Sp novillo, Ast nuviellu vs. Cat torell, Oc taurèl "bullock"), while Catalan has a shared history with the Western Romance innovative core, especially Occitan. Catalan language_sentence_90

Like all Romance languages, Catalan has a handful of native words which are rare or only found in Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_91

These include: Catalan language_sentence_92

Catalan language_unordered_list_1

  • verbs: cōnfīgere 'to fasten; transfix' > confegir 'to compose, write up', congemināre > conjuminar 'to combine, conjugate', de-ex-somnitare > deixondar/-ir 'to wake; awaken', dēnsāre 'to thicken; crowd together' > desar 'to save, keep', īgnōrāre > enyorar 'to miss, yearn, pine for', indāgāre 'to investigate, track' > Old Catalan enagar 'to incite, induce', odiāre > OCat ujar 'to exhaust, fatigue', pācificāre > apaivagar 'to appease, mollify', repudiāre > rebutjar 'to reject, refuse';Catalan language_item_1_7
  • nouns: brīsa > brisa 'pomace', buda > boga 'reedmace', catarrhu > cadarn 'catarrh', congesta > congesta 'snowdrift', dēlīrium > deler 'ardor, passion', fretu > freu 'brake', lābem > (a)llau 'avalanche', ōra > vora 'edge, border', pistrice > pestriu 'fish species', prūna 'live coal' > espurna 'spark', tardātiōnem > tardaó > tardor 'autumn'.Catalan language_item_1_8

The Gothic superstrate produced different outcomes in Spanish and Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_93

For example, Catalan "mud" and "to roast", of Germanic origin, contrast with Spanish and , of Latin origin; whereas Catalan "spinning wheel" and "temple", of Latin origin, contrast with Spanish and , of Germanic origin. Catalan language_sentence_94

The same happens with Arabic loanwords. Catalan language_sentence_95

Thus, Catalan alfàbia "large earthenware jar" and "tile", of Arabic origin, contrast with Spanish and , of Latin origin; whereas Catalan "oil" and "olive", of Latin origin, contrast with Spanish and . Catalan language_sentence_96

However, the Arabic element in Spanish is generally much more prevalent. Catalan language_sentence_97

Situated between two large linguistic blocks (Iberian Romance and Gallo-Romance), Catalan has many unique lexical choices, such as "to miss somebody", "to calm somebody down", and "reject". Catalan language_sentence_98

Geographic distribution Catalan language_section_9

Catalan-speaking territories Catalan language_section_10

Main article: Catalan Countries Catalan language_sentence_99

Traditionally Catalan-speaking territories are sometimes called the Països Catalans (Catalan Countries), a denomination based on cultural affinity and common heritage, that has also had a subsequent political interpretation but no official status. Catalan language_sentence_100

Various interpretations of the term may include some or all of these regions. Catalan language_sentence_101

Catalan language_table_general_3

Territories where Catalan is spokenCatalan language_table_caption_3
StateCatalan language_header_cell_3_0_0 TerritoryCatalan language_header_cell_3_0_1 Catalan nameCatalan language_header_cell_3_0_2 NotesCatalan language_header_cell_3_0_3
AndorraCatalan language_cell_3_1_0 Andorra AndorraCatalan language_cell_3_1_1 AndorraCatalan language_cell_3_1_2 A sovereign state where Catalan is the national and the sole official language. The Andorrans speak a Western Catalan variety.Catalan language_cell_3_1_3
FranceCatalan language_cell_3_2_0 Catalonia Northern CataloniaCatalan language_cell_3_2_1 Catalunya NordCatalan language_cell_3_2_2 Roughly corresponding to the département of Pyrénées-Orientales.Catalan language_cell_3_2_3
SpainCatalan language_cell_3_3_0 Catalonia CataloniaCatalan language_cell_3_3_1 CatalunyaCatalan language_cell_3_3_2 In the Aran Valley (northwest corner of Catalonia), in addition to Occitan, which is the local language, Catalan, Spanish and French are also spoken.Catalan language_cell_3_3_3
Valencian_Community Valencian CommunityCatalan language_cell_3_4_0 Comunitat ValencianaCatalan language_cell_3_4_1 Excepting some regions in the west and south which have been Aragonese/Spanish-speaking since at least the 18th century. The Western Catalan variety spoken there is known as "Valencian".Catalan language_cell_3_4_2

La FranjaCatalan language_cell_3_5_0

La FranjaCatalan language_cell_3_5_1 A part of the Autonomous Community of Aragon, specifically a strip bordering Western Catalonia. It comprises the comarques of Ribagorça, Llitera, Baix Cinca, and Matarranya.Catalan language_cell_3_5_2
Balearic_Islands Balearic IslandsCatalan language_cell_3_6_0 Illes BalearsCatalan language_cell_3_6_1 Comprising the islands of Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera.Catalan language_cell_3_6_2
Region_of_Murcia CarcheCatalan language_cell_3_7_0 El CarxeCatalan language_cell_3_7_1 A small area of the Autonomous Community of Murcia, settled in the 19th century.Catalan language_cell_3_7_2
ItalyCatalan language_cell_3_8_0 AlgheroCatalan language_cell_3_8_1 L'AlguerCatalan language_cell_3_8_2 A city in the Province of Sassari, on the island of Sardinia, where the Algherese dialect is spoken.Catalan language_cell_3_8_3

Number of speakers Catalan language_section_11

The number of people known to be fluent in Catalan varies depending on the sources used. Catalan language_sentence_102

A 2004 study did not count the total number of speakers, but estimated a total of 9–9.5 million by matching the percentage of speakers to the population of each area where Catalan is spoken. Catalan language_sentence_103

The web site of the Generalitat de Catalunya estimated that as of 2004 there were 9,118,882 speakers of Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_104

These figures only reflect potential speakers; today it is the native language of only 35.6% of the Catalan population. Catalan language_sentence_105

According to Ethnologue, Catalan had four million native speakers and five million second-language speakers in 2012. Catalan language_sentence_106

According to a 2011 study the total number of Catalan speakers is over 9.8 million, with 5.9 million residing in Catalonia. Catalan language_sentence_107

More than half of them speak Catalan as a second language, with native speakers being about 4.4 million of those (more than 2.8 in Catalonia). Catalan language_sentence_108

Very few Catalan monoglots exist; basically, virtually all of the Catalan speakers in Spain are bilingual speakers of Catalan and Spanish, with a sizable population of Spanish-only speakers of immigrant origin (typically born outside Catalonia or with both parents born outside Catalonia) existing in the major Catalan urban areas as well. Catalan language_sentence_109

In Roussillon, only a minority of French Catalans speak Catalan nowadays, with French being the majority language for the inhabitants after a continued process of language shift. Catalan language_sentence_110

According to a 2019 survey by the Catalan government, 31.5% of the inhabitants of Catalonia have Catalan as first language at home whereas 52.7% have Spanish, 2.8% both Catalan and Spanish and 10.8% other languages. Catalan language_sentence_111

Spanish is the most spoken language in Barcelona (according to the linguistic census held by the Government of Catalonia in 2013) and it is understood almost universally. Catalan language_sentence_112

According to this census of 2013 Catalan is also very commonly spoken in the city of 1,501,262: it is understood by 95% of the population, while 72.3% over the age of 2 can speak it (1,137,816), 79% can read it (1,246.555), and 53% can write it (835,080). Catalan language_sentence_113

The proportion in Barcelona who can speak it, 72.3%, is lower than that of the overall Catalan population, of whom 81.2% over the age of 15 speak the language. Catalan language_sentence_114

Knowledge of Catalan has increased significantly in recent decades thanks to a language immersion educational system. Catalan language_sentence_115

An important social characteristic of the Catalan language is that all the areas where it is spoken are bilingual in practice: together with the French language in Roussillon, with Italian in Alghero, with Spanish and French in Andorra and with Spanish in the rest of the territories. Catalan language_sentence_116

Catalan language_table_general_4

TerritoryCatalan language_header_cell_4_0_0 StateCatalan language_header_cell_4_0_1 UnderstandCatalan language_header_cell_4_0_2 Can speakCatalan language_header_cell_4_0_3
CataloniaCatalan language_cell_4_1_0 SpainCatalan language_cell_4_1_1 6,502,880Catalan language_cell_4_1_2 5,698,400Catalan language_cell_4_1_3
Valencian CommunityCatalan language_cell_4_2_0 SpainCatalan language_cell_4_2_1 3,448,780Catalan language_cell_4_2_2 2,407,951Catalan language_cell_4_2_3
Balearic IslandsCatalan language_cell_4_3_0 SpainCatalan language_cell_4_3_1 852,780Catalan language_cell_4_3_2 706,065Catalan language_cell_4_3_3
Catalonia RoussillonCatalan language_cell_4_4_0 FranceCatalan language_cell_4_4_1 203,121Catalan language_cell_4_4_2 125,621Catalan language_cell_4_4_3
AndorraCatalan language_cell_4_5_0 AndorraCatalan language_cell_4_5_1 75,407Catalan language_cell_4_5_2 61,975Catalan language_cell_4_5_3
Aragon La Franja (Aragon)Catalan language_cell_4_6_0 SpainCatalan language_cell_4_6_1 47,250Catalan language_cell_4_6_2 45,000Catalan language_cell_4_6_3
Alghero (Sardinia)Catalan language_cell_4_7_0 ItalyCatalan language_cell_4_7_1 20,000Catalan language_cell_4_7_2 17,625Catalan language_cell_4_7_3
Region_of_Murcia Carche (Murcia)Catalan language_cell_4_8_0 SpainCatalan language_cell_4_8_1 No dataCatalan language_cell_4_8_2 No dataCatalan language_cell_4_8_3
Total Catalan-speaking territoriesCatalan language_cell_4_9_0 11,150,218Catalan language_cell_4_9_2 9,062,637Catalan language_cell_4_9_3
Rest of WorldCatalan language_cell_4_10_0 No dataCatalan language_cell_4_10_2 350,000Catalan language_cell_4_10_3
TotalCatalan language_cell_4_11_0 11,150,218Catalan language_cell_4_11_2 9,412,637Catalan language_cell_4_11_3

Catalan language_description_list_2

  • 1.^ The number of people who understand Catalan includes those who can speak it.Catalan language_item_2_9
  • 2.^ Figures relate to all self-declared capable speakers, not just native speakers.Catalan language_item_2_10

Level of knowledge Catalan language_section_12

(% of the population 15 years old and older). Catalan language_sentence_117

Social use Catalan language_section_13

(% of the population 15 years old and older). Catalan language_sentence_118

Native language Catalan language_section_14

Phonology Catalan language_section_15

Main article: Catalan phonology Catalan language_sentence_119

Catalan phonology varies by dialect. Catalan language_sentence_120

Notable features include: Catalan language_sentence_121

Catalan language_unordered_list_3

  • Marked contrast of the vowel pairs /ɛ e/ and /ɔ o/, as in other Western Romance languages, other than Spanish.Catalan language_item_3_11
  • Lack of diphthongization of Latin short ĕ, ŏ, as in Galician and Portuguese, but unlike French, Spanish, or Italian.Catalan language_item_3_12
  • Abundance of diphthongs containing /w/, as in Galician and Portuguese.Catalan language_item_3_13

In contrast to other Romance languages, Catalan has many monosyllabic words, and these may end in a wide variety of consonants, including some consonant clusters. Catalan language_sentence_122

Additionally, Catalan has final obstruent devoicing, which gives rise to an abundance of such couplets as amic "(male friend") vs. amiga ("female friend"). Catalan language_sentence_123

Central Catalan pronunciation is considered to be standard for the language. Catalan language_sentence_124

The descriptions below are mostly representative of this variety. Catalan language_sentence_125

For the differences in pronunciation between the different dialects, see the section on pronunciation of dialects in this article. Catalan language_sentence_126

Vowels Catalan language_section_16

Catalan has inherited the typical vowel system of Vulgar Latin, with seven stressed phonemes: /a ɛ e i ɔ o u/, a common feature in Western Romance, with the exception of Spanish. Catalan language_sentence_127

Balearic also has instances of stressed /ə/. Catalan language_sentence_128

Dialects differ in the different degrees of vowel reduction, and the incidence of the pair /ɛ e/. Catalan language_sentence_129

In Central Catalan, unstressed vowels reduce to three: /a e ɛ/ > [ə]; /o ɔ u/ > [u]; /i/ remains distinct. Catalan language_sentence_130

The other dialects have different vowel reduction processes (see the section pronunciation of dialects in this article). Catalan language_sentence_131

Catalan language_table_general_5

Examples of vowel reduction processes in Central Catalan The root is stressed in the first word and unstressed in the secondCatalan language_table_caption_5
Catalan language_header_cell_5_0_0 Front vowelsCatalan language_header_cell_5_0_1 Back vowelsCatalan language_header_cell_5_0_4

pairCatalan language_header_cell_5_1_0

gel ("ice")

gelat ("ice cream")Catalan language_cell_5_1_1

pedra ("stone")

pedrera ("quarry")Catalan language_cell_5_1_2

banya ("he bathes")

banyem ("we bathe")Catalan language_cell_5_1_3

cosa ("thing")

coseta ("little thing")Catalan language_cell_5_1_4

tot ("everything")

total ("total")Catalan language_cell_5_1_5


transcriptionCatalan language_header_cell_5_2_0


[ʒəˈlat]Catalan language_cell_5_2_1


[pəˈðɾeɾə]Catalan language_cell_5_2_2


[bəˈɲɛm]Catalan language_cell_5_2_3


[kuˈzɛtə]Catalan language_cell_5_2_4


[tuˈtal]Catalan language_cell_5_2_5

Consonants Catalan language_section_17

Catalan language_table_general_6

Catalan consonantsCatalan language_table_caption_6
Catalan language_header_cell_6_0_0 BilabialCatalan language_header_cell_6_0_2 Alveolar

/ DentalCatalan language_header_cell_6_0_3

PalatalCatalan language_header_cell_6_0_4 VelarCatalan language_header_cell_6_0_5
NasalCatalan language_header_cell_6_1_0 mCatalan language_cell_6_1_2 nCatalan language_cell_6_1_3 ɲCatalan language_cell_6_1_4 ŋCatalan language_cell_6_1_5
PlosiveCatalan language_header_cell_6_2_0 voicelessCatalan language_header_cell_6_2_1 pCatalan language_cell_6_2_2 tCatalan language_cell_6_2_3 c ~ kCatalan language_cell_6_2_4
voicedCatalan language_header_cell_6_3_0 bCatalan language_cell_6_3_1 dCatalan language_cell_6_3_2 ɟ ~ ɡCatalan language_cell_6_3_3
AffricateCatalan language_header_cell_6_4_0 voicelessCatalan language_header_cell_6_4_1 Catalan language_cell_6_4_2 tsCatalan language_cell_6_4_3 Catalan language_cell_6_4_4 Catalan language_cell_6_4_5
voicedCatalan language_header_cell_6_5_0 Catalan language_cell_6_5_1 dzCatalan language_cell_6_5_2 Catalan language_cell_6_5_3 Catalan language_cell_6_5_4
FricativeCatalan language_header_cell_6_6_0 voicelessCatalan language_header_cell_6_6_1 fCatalan language_cell_6_6_2 sCatalan language_cell_6_6_3 ʃCatalan language_cell_6_6_4 Catalan language_cell_6_6_5
voicedCatalan language_header_cell_6_7_0 (v)Catalan language_cell_6_7_1 zCatalan language_cell_6_7_2 ʒCatalan language_cell_6_7_3 Catalan language_cell_6_7_4
ApproximantCatalan language_header_cell_6_8_0 centralCatalan language_header_cell_6_8_1 Catalan language_cell_6_8_2 Catalan language_cell_6_8_3 jCatalan language_cell_6_8_4 wCatalan language_cell_6_8_5
lateralCatalan language_header_cell_6_9_0 Catalan language_cell_6_9_1 lCatalan language_cell_6_9_2 ʎCatalan language_cell_6_9_3 Catalan language_cell_6_9_4
TapCatalan language_header_cell_6_10_0 Catalan language_cell_6_10_2 ɾCatalan language_cell_6_10_3 Catalan language_cell_6_10_4 Catalan language_cell_6_10_5
TrillCatalan language_header_cell_6_11_0 Catalan language_cell_6_11_2 rCatalan language_cell_6_11_3 Catalan language_cell_6_11_4 Catalan language_cell_6_11_5

The consonant system of Catalan is rather conservative. Catalan language_sentence_132

Catalan language_unordered_list_4

  • /l/ has a velarized allophone in syllable coda position in most dialects. However, /l/ is velarized irrespective of position in Eastern dialects like Majorcan and standard Eastern Catalan.Catalan language_item_4_14
  • /v/ occurs in Balearic, Alguerese, standard Valencian and some areas in southern Catalonia. It has merged with /b/ elsewhere.Catalan language_item_4_15
  • Voiced obstruents undergo final-obstruent devoicing: /b/ > [p], /d/ > [t], /ɡ/ > [k].Catalan language_item_4_16
  • Voiced stops become lenited to approximants in syllable onsets, after continuants: /b/ > β, /d/ > ð, /ɡ/ > ɣ. Exceptions include /d/ after lateral consonants, and /b/ after /f/. In coda position, these sounds are realized as stops, except in some Valencian dialects where they are lenited.Catalan language_item_4_17
  • There is some confusion in the literature about the precise phonetic characteristics of /ʃ/, /ʒ/, /tʃ/, /dʒ/. Some sources describe them as "postalveolar". Others as "back alveolo-palatal", implying that the characters ⟨ɕ ʑ tɕ dʑ⟩ would be more accurate. However, in all literature only the characters for palato-alveolar affricates and fricatives are used, even when the same sources use ⟨ɕ ʑ⟩ for other languages like Polish and Chinese.Catalan language_item_4_18
  • The distribution of the two rhotics /r/ and /ɾ/ closely parallels that of Spanish. Between vowels, the two contrast, but they are otherwise in complementary distribution: in the onset of the first syllable in a word, r appears unless preceded by a consonant. Dialects vary in regards to rhotics in the coda with Western Catalan generally featuring ɾ and Central Catalan dialects featuring a weakly trilled r unless it precedes a vowel-initial word in the same prosodic unit, in which case ɾ appears.Catalan language_item_4_19
  • In careful speech, /n/, /m/, /l/ may be geminated. Geminated /ʎ/ may also occur. Some analyze intervocalic [r] as the result of gemination of a single rhotic phoneme. This is similar to the common analysis of Spanish and Portuguese rhotics.Catalan language_item_4_20

Phonological evolution Catalan language_section_18

Main article: Phonological history of Catalan Catalan language_sentence_133

Sociolinguistics Catalan language_section_19

Catalan sociolinguistics studies the situation of Catalan in the world and the different varieties that this language presents. Catalan language_sentence_134

It is a subdiscipline of Catalan philology and other affine studies and has as an objective to analyze the relation between the Catalan language, the speakers and the close reality (including the one of other languages in contact). Catalan language_sentence_135

Preferential subjects of study Catalan language_section_20

Catalan language_unordered_list_5

  • Dialects of CatalanCatalan language_item_5_21
  • Variations of Catalan by class, gender, profession, age and level of studiesCatalan language_item_5_22
  • Process of linguistic normalizationCatalan language_item_5_23
  • Relations between Catalan and Spanish or FrenchCatalan language_item_5_24
  • Perception on the language of Catalan speakers and non-speakersCatalan language_item_5_25
  • Presence of Catalan in several fields: tagging, public function, media, professional sectorsCatalan language_item_5_26

Dialects Catalan language_section_21

Main article: Catalan dialects Catalan language_sentence_136

Overview Catalan language_section_22

The dialects of the Catalan language feature a relative uniformity, especially when compared to other Romance languages; both in terms of vocabulary, semantics, syntax, morphology, and phonology. Catalan language_sentence_137

Mutual intelligibility between dialects is very high, estimates ranging from 90% to 95%. Catalan language_sentence_138

The only exception is the isolated idiosyncratic Alguerese dialect. Catalan language_sentence_139

Catalan is split in two major dialectal blocks: Eastern Catalan, and Western Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_140

The main difference lies in the treatment of unstressed a and e; which have merged to /ə/ in Eastern dialects, but which remain distinct as /a/ and /e/ in Western dialects. Catalan language_sentence_141

There are a few other differences in pronunciation, verbal morphology, and vocabulary. Catalan language_sentence_142

Western Catalan comprises the two dialects of Northwestern Catalan and Valencian; the Eastern block comprises four dialects: Central Catalan, Balearic, Rossellonese, and Alguerese. Catalan language_sentence_143

Each dialect can be further subdivided in several subdialects. Catalan language_sentence_144

The terms "Catalan" and "Valencian" (respectively used in Catalonia and the Valencian Community) are two varieties of the same language. Catalan language_sentence_145

There are two institutions regulating the two standard varieties, the Institute of Catalan Studies in Catalonia and the Valencian Academy of the Language in the Valencian Community. Catalan language_sentence_146

Central Catalan is considered the standard pronunciation of the language and has the highest number of speakers. Catalan language_sentence_147

It is spoken in the densely populated regions of the Barcelona province, the eastern half of the province of Tarragona, and most of the province of Girona. Catalan language_sentence_148

Catalan has an inflectional grammar. Catalan language_sentence_149

Nouns have two genders (masculine, feminine), and two numbers (singular, plural). Catalan language_sentence_150

Pronouns additionally can have a neuter gender, and some are also inflected for case and politeness, and can be combined in very complex ways. Catalan language_sentence_151

Verbs are split in several paradigms and are inflected for person, number, tense, aspect, mood, and gender. Catalan language_sentence_152

In terms of pronunciation, Catalan has many words ending in a wide variety of consonants and some consonant clusters, in contrast with many other Romance languages. Catalan language_sentence_153

Catalan language_table_general_7

Main dialectal divisions of CatalanCatalan language_table_caption_7
BlockCatalan language_header_cell_7_0_0 Western CatalanCatalan language_cell_7_0_1 Eastern CatalanCatalan language_cell_7_0_3
DialectCatalan language_header_cell_7_1_0 NorthwesternCatalan language_cell_7_1_1 ValencianCatalan language_cell_7_1_2 CentralCatalan language_cell_7_1_3 BalearicCatalan language_cell_7_1_4 Northern/RosselloneseCatalan language_cell_7_1_5 AlguereseCatalan language_cell_7_1_6
AreaCatalan language_header_cell_7_2_0 Spain, AndorraCatalan language_cell_7_2_1 SpainCatalan language_cell_7_2_2 FranceCatalan language_cell_7_2_5 ItalyCatalan language_cell_7_2_6
Andorra, Provinces of Lleida, western half of Tarragona, La FranjaCatalan language_cell_7_3_0 Autonomous community of Valencia, CarcheCatalan language_cell_7_3_1 Provinces of Barcelona, eastern half of Tarragona, most of GironaCatalan language_cell_7_3_2 Balearic islandsCatalan language_cell_7_3_3 Roussillon/Northern CataloniaCatalan language_cell_7_3_4 City of Alghero in SardiniaCatalan language_cell_7_3_5

Pronunciation Catalan language_section_23

Vowels Catalan language_section_24

Catalan has inherited the typical vowel system of Vulgar Latin, with seven stressed phonemes: /a ɛ e i ɔ o u/, a common feature in Western Romance, except Spanish. Catalan language_sentence_154

Balearic has also instances of stressed /ə/. Catalan language_sentence_155

Dialects differ in the different degrees of vowel reduction, and the incidence of the pair /ɛ e/. Catalan language_sentence_156

In Eastern Catalan (except Majorcan), unstressed vowels reduce to three: /a e ɛ/ > [ə]; /o ɔ u/ > [u]; /i/ remains distinct. Catalan language_sentence_157

There are a few instances of unreduced [e], [o] in some words. Catalan language_sentence_158

Alguerese has lowered [ə] to [a]. Catalan language_sentence_159

In Majorcan, unstressed vowels reduce to four: /a e ɛ/ follow the Eastern Catalan reduction pattern; however /o ɔ/ reduce to [o], with /u/ remaining distinct, as in Western Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_160

In Western Catalan, unstressed vowels reduce to five: /e ɛ/ > [e]; /o ɔ/ > [o]; /a u i/ remain distinct. Catalan language_sentence_161

This reduction pattern, inherited from Proto-Romance, is also found in Italian and Portuguese. Catalan language_sentence_162

Some Western dialects present further reduction or vowel harmony in some cases. Catalan language_sentence_163

Central, Western, and Balearic differ in the lexical incidence of stressed /e/ and /ɛ/. Catalan language_sentence_164

Usually, words with /ɛ/ in Central Catalan correspond to /ə/ in Balearic and /e/ in Western Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_165

Words with /e/ in Balearic almost always have /e/ in Central and Western Catalan as well. Catalan language_sentence_166

As a result, Central Catalan has a much higher incidence of /ɛ/. Catalan language_sentence_167

Catalan language_table_general_8

Detailed examples of vowel reduction processes in different dialectsCatalan language_table_caption_8
Catalan language_header_cell_8_0_0 Word pairs:

the first with stressed root, the second with unstressed rootCatalan language_header_cell_8_0_1

WesternCatalan language_header_cell_8_0_2 EasternCatalan language_header_cell_8_0_3
MajorcanCatalan language_header_cell_8_1_0 CentralCatalan language_header_cell_8_1_1 NorthernCatalan language_header_cell_8_1_2

vowelsCatalan language_header_cell_8_2_0

gel ("ice")

gelat ("ice cream")Catalan language_cell_8_2_1


[dʒeˈlat]Catalan language_cell_8_2_2


[ʒəˈlat]Catalan language_cell_8_2_3


[ʒəˈlat]Catalan language_cell_8_2_5

pera ("pear")

perera ("pear tree")Catalan language_cell_8_3_0


[peˈɾeɾa]Catalan language_cell_8_3_1


[pəˈɾeɾə]Catalan language_cell_8_3_2


[pəˈɾeɾə]Catalan language_cell_8_3_3


[pəˈɾeɾə]Catalan language_cell_8_3_4

pedra ("stone")

pedrera ("quarry")Catalan language_cell_8_4_0


[peˈðɾeɾa]Catalan language_cell_8_4_1


[pəˈðɾeɾə]Catalan language_cell_8_4_2

banya ("he bathes")

banyem ("we bathe") Majorcan: banyam ("we bathe")Catalan language_cell_8_5_0


[baˈɲem]Catalan language_cell_8_5_1


[bəˈɲam]Catalan language_cell_8_5_2


[bəˈɲɛm]Catalan language_cell_8_5_3


[bəˈɲem]Catalan language_cell_8_5_4


vowelsCatalan language_header_cell_8_6_0

cosa ("thing")

coseta ("little thing")Catalan language_cell_8_6_1


[koˈzeta]Catalan language_cell_8_6_2


[koˈzətə]Catalan language_cell_8_6_3


[kuˈzɛtə]Catalan language_cell_8_6_4


[kuˈzetə]Catalan language_cell_8_6_5

tot ("everything")

total ("total")Catalan language_cell_8_7_0


[toˈtal]Catalan language_cell_8_7_1


[tuˈtal]Catalan language_cell_8_7_3


[tuˈtal]Catalan language_cell_8_7_4

Consonants Catalan language_section_25

Morphology Catalan language_section_26

Western Catalan: In verbs, the ending for 1st-person present indicative is -e in verbs of the 1st conjugation and -∅ in verbs of the 2nd and 3rd conjugations in most of the Valencian Community, or -o in all verb conjugations in the Northern Valencian Community and Western Catalonia. Catalan language_sentence_168

E.g. parle, tem, sent (Valencian); parlo, temo, sento (Northwestern Catalan). Catalan language_sentence_169

Eastern Catalan: In verbs, the ending for 1st-person present indicative is -o, -i, or -∅ in all conjugations. Catalan language_sentence_170

E.g. parlo (Central), parl (Balearic), and parli (Northern), all meaning ('I speak'). Catalan language_sentence_171

Western Catalan: In verbs, the inchoative endings are -isc/-esc, -ix, -ixen, -isca/-esca. Catalan language_sentence_172

Eastern Catalan: In verbs, the inchoative endings are -eixo, -eix, -eixen, -eixi. Catalan language_sentence_173

Western Catalan: In nouns and adjectives, maintenance of /n/ of medieval plurals in proparoxytone words. Catalan language_sentence_174

E.g. hòmens 'men', jóvens 'youth'. Catalan language_sentence_175

Eastern Catalan: In nouns and adjectives, loss of /n/ of medieval plurals in proparoxytone words. Catalan language_sentence_176

E.g. homes 'men', joves 'youth'. Catalan language_sentence_177

Vocabulary Catalan language_section_27

Despite its relative lexical unity, the two dialectal blocks of Catalan (Eastern and Western) show some differences in word choices. Catalan language_sentence_178

Any lexical divergence within any of the two groups can be explained as an archaism. Catalan language_sentence_179

Also, usually Central Catalan acts as an innovative element. Catalan language_sentence_180

Catalan language_table_general_9

Selection of different words between Western and Eastern CatalanCatalan language_table_caption_9
GlossCatalan language_header_cell_9_0_0 "mirror"Catalan language_header_cell_9_0_1 "boy"Catalan language_header_cell_9_0_2 "broom"Catalan language_header_cell_9_0_3 "navel"Catalan language_header_cell_9_0_4 "to exit"Catalan language_header_cell_9_0_5
Eastern CatalanCatalan language_header_cell_9_1_0 mirallCatalan language_cell_9_1_1 noiCatalan language_cell_9_1_2 escombraCatalan language_cell_9_1_3 llombrígolCatalan language_cell_9_1_4 sortirCatalan language_cell_9_1_5
Western CatalanCatalan language_header_cell_9_2_0 espillCatalan language_cell_9_2_1 xiquetCatalan language_cell_9_2_2 graneraCatalan language_cell_9_2_3 melicCatalan language_cell_9_2_4 eixirCatalan language_cell_9_2_5

Standards Catalan language_section_28

Main articles: Institut d'Estudis Catalans and Acadèmia Valenciana de la Llengua Catalan language_sentence_181

Catalan language_table_general_10

Written varietiesCatalan language_table_caption_10
Catalan (IEC)Catalan language_header_cell_10_0_0 Valencian (AVL)Catalan language_header_cell_10_0_1 glossCatalan language_header_cell_10_0_2
anglèsCatalan language_cell_10_1_0 anglésCatalan language_cell_10_1_1 EnglishCatalan language_cell_10_1_2
conèixerCatalan language_cell_10_2_0 conéixerCatalan language_cell_10_2_1 to knowCatalan language_cell_10_2_2
treureCatalan language_cell_10_3_0 traureCatalan language_cell_10_3_1 take outCatalan language_cell_10_3_2
néixerCatalan language_cell_10_4_0 nàixerCatalan language_cell_10_4_1 to be bornCatalan language_cell_10_4_2
càntirCatalan language_cell_10_5_0 cànterCatalan language_cell_10_5_1 pitcherCatalan language_cell_10_5_2
rodóCatalan language_cell_10_6_0 redóCatalan language_cell_10_6_1 roundCatalan language_cell_10_6_2
mevaCatalan language_cell_10_7_0 meuaCatalan language_cell_10_7_1 my, mineCatalan language_cell_10_7_2
ametllaCatalan language_cell_10_8_0 ametlaCatalan language_cell_10_8_1 almondCatalan language_cell_10_8_2
estrellaCatalan language_cell_10_9_0 estrelaCatalan language_cell_10_9_1 starCatalan language_cell_10_9_2
copCatalan language_cell_10_10_0 colpCatalan language_cell_10_10_1 hitCatalan language_cell_10_10_2
llagostaCatalan language_cell_10_11_0 llangostaCatalan language_cell_10_11_1 lobsterCatalan language_cell_10_11_2
homesCatalan language_cell_10_12_0 hòmensCatalan language_cell_10_12_1 menCatalan language_cell_10_12_2
serveiCatalan language_cell_10_13_0 serviciCatalan language_cell_10_13_1 serviceCatalan language_cell_10_13_2

Standard Catalan, virtually accepted by all speakers, is mostly based on Eastern Catalan, which is the most widely used dialect. Catalan language_sentence_182

Nevertheless, the standards of the Valencian Community and the Balearics admit alternative forms, mostly traditional ones, which are not current in eastern Catalonia. Catalan language_sentence_183

The most notable difference between both standards is some tonic ⟨e⟩ accentuation, for instance: francès, anglès (IEC) – francés, anglés (AVL). Catalan language_sentence_184

Nevertheless, AVL's standard keeps the grave accent ⟨è⟩, while pronouncing it as /e/ rather than /ɛ/, in some words like: què ('what'), or València. Catalan language_sentence_185

Other divergences include the use of ⟨tl⟩ (AVL) in some words instead of ⟨tll⟩ like in ametla/ametlla ('almond'), espatla/espatlla ('back'), the use of elided demonstratives (este 'this', eixe 'that') in the same level as reinforced ones (aquest, aqueix) or the use of many verbal forms common in Valencian, and some of these common in the rest of Western Catalan too, like subjunctive mood or inchoative conjugation in -ix- at the same level as -eix- or the priority use of -e morpheme in 1st person singular in present indicative (-ar verbs): jo compre instead of jo compro ('I buy'). Catalan language_sentence_186

In the Balearic Islands, IEC's standard is used but adapted for the Balearic dialect by the University of the Balearic Islands's philological section. Catalan language_sentence_187

In this way, for instance, IEC says it is correct writing cantam as much as cantem ('we sing') but the University says that the priority form in the Balearic Islands must be cantam in all fields. Catalan language_sentence_188

Another feature of the Balearic standard is the non-ending in the 1st person singular present indicative: jo compr ('I buy'), jo tem ('I fear'), jo dorm ('I sleep'). Catalan language_sentence_189

In Alghero, the IEC has adapted its standard to the Alguerese dialect. Catalan language_sentence_190

In this standard one can find, among other features: the definite article lo instead of el, special possessive pronouns and determinants la mia ('mine'), lo sou/la sua ('his/her'), lo tou/la tua ('yours'), and so on, the use of -v- /v/ in the imperfect tense in all conjugations: cantava, creixiva, llegiva; the use of many archaic words, usual words in Alguerese: manco instead of menys ('less'), calqui u instead of algú ('someone'), qual/quala instead of quin/quina ('which'), and so on; and the adaptation of weak pronouns. Catalan language_sentence_191

In 2011, the Aragonese government passed a decree approving the statutes of a new language regulator of Catalan in La Franja (the so-called Catalan-speaking areas of Aragon) as originally provided for by Law 10/2009. Catalan language_sentence_192

The new entity, designated as Acadèmia Aragonesa del Català, shall allow a facultative education in Catalan and a standardization of the Catalan language in La Franja. Catalan language_sentence_193

Status of Valencian Catalan language_section_29

Main articles: Valencian, Valencian language controversy, Blaverism, and Anti-Catalanism Catalan language_sentence_194

Valencian is classified as a Western dialect, along with the northwestern varieties spoken in Western Catalonia (provinces of Lleida and the western half of Tarragona). Catalan language_sentence_195

The various forms of Catalan and Valencian are mutually intelligible (ranging from 90% to 95%) Catalan language_sentence_196

Linguists, including Valencian scholars, deal with Catalan and Valencian as the same language. Catalan language_sentence_197

The official regulating body of the language of the Valencian Community, the Valencian Academy of Language (Acadèmia Valenciana de la Llengua, AVL) declares the linguistic unity between Valencian and Catalan varieties. Catalan language_sentence_198

The AVL, created by the Valencian parliament, is in charge of dictating the official rules governing the use of Valencian, and its standard is based on the Norms of Castelló (Normes de Castelló). Catalan language_sentence_199

Currently, everyone who writes in Valencian uses this standard, except the Royal Academy of Valencian Culture (Acadèmia de Cultura Valenciana, RACV), which uses for Valencian an independent standard. Catalan language_sentence_200

Despite the position of the official organizations, an opinion poll carried out between 2001 and 2004 showed that the majority of the Valencian people consider Valencian different from Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_201

This position is promoted by people who do not use Valencian regularly. Catalan language_sentence_202

Furthermore, the data indicates that younger generations educated in Valencian are much less likely to hold these views. Catalan language_sentence_203

A minority of Valencian scholars active in fields other than linguistics defends the position of the Royal Academy of Valencian Culture (Acadèmia de Cultura Valenciana, RACV), which uses for Valencian a standard independent from Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_204

This clash of opinions has sparked much controversy. Catalan language_sentence_205

For example, during the drafting of the European Constitution in 2004, the Spanish government supplied the EU with translations of the text into Basque, Galician, Catalan, and Valencian, but the latter two were identical. Catalan language_sentence_206

Vocabulary Catalan language_section_30

Word choices Catalan language_section_31

Despite its relative lexical unity, the two dialectal blocks of Catalan (Eastern and Western) show some differences in word choices. Catalan language_sentence_207

Any lexical divergence within any of the two groups can be explained as an archaism. Catalan language_sentence_208

Also, usually Central Catalan acts as an innovative element. Catalan language_sentence_209

Literary Catalan allows the use of words from different dialects, except those of very restricted use. Catalan language_sentence_210

However, from the 19th century onwards, there has been a tendency towards favoring words of Northern dialects to the detriment of others, even though nowadays there is a greater freedom of choice. Catalan language_sentence_211

Latin and Greek loanwords Catalan language_section_32

Like other languages, Catalan has a large list of loanwords from Greek and Latin. Catalan language_sentence_212

This process started very early, and one can find such examples in Ramon Llull's work. Catalan language_sentence_213

In the 14th and 15th centuries Catalan had a far greater number of Greco-Latin loanwords than other Romance languages, as is attested for example in Roís de Corella's writings. Catalan language_sentence_214

The incorporation of learned, or "bookish" words from its own ancestor language, Latin, into Catalan is arguably another form of lexical borrowing through the influence of written language and the liturgical language of the Church. Catalan language_sentence_215

Throughout the Middle Ages and into the early modern period, most literate Catalan speakers were also literate in Latin; and thus they easily adopted Latin words into their writing—and eventually speech—in Catalan. Catalan language_sentence_216

Word formation Catalan language_section_33

The process of morphological derivation in Catalan follows the same principles as the other Romance languages, where agglutination is common. Catalan language_sentence_217

Many times, several affixes are appended to a preexisting lexeme, and some sound alternations can occur, for example elèctric [əˈlɛktrik] ("electrical") vs. electricitat [ələktrisiˈtat]. Catalan language_sentence_218

Prefixes are usually appended to verbs, as in preveure ("foresee"). Catalan language_sentence_219

There is greater regularity in the process of word-compounding, where one can find compounded words formed much like those in English. Catalan language_sentence_220

Catalan language_table_general_11

Common types of word compounds in CatalanCatalan language_table_caption_11
TypeCatalan language_header_cell_11_0_0 ExampleCatalan language_header_cell_11_0_1 GlossCatalan language_header_cell_11_0_2
two nouns, the second assimilated to the firstCatalan language_cell_11_1_0 paper monedaCatalan language_cell_11_1_1 "banknote paper"Catalan language_cell_11_1_2
noun delimited by an adjectiveCatalan language_cell_11_2_0 estat majorCatalan language_cell_11_2_1 "military staff"Catalan language_cell_11_2_2
noun delimited by another noun and a prepositionCatalan language_cell_11_3_0 màquina d'escriureCatalan language_cell_11_3_1 "typewriter"Catalan language_cell_11_3_2
verb radical with a nominal objectCatalan language_cell_11_4_0 paracaigudesCatalan language_cell_11_4_1 "parachute"Catalan language_cell_11_4_2
noun delimited by an adjective, with adjectival valueCatalan language_cell_11_5_0 pit-roigCatalan language_cell_11_5_1 "robin" (bird)Catalan language_cell_11_5_2

Writing system Catalan language_section_34

Main article: Catalan orthography Catalan language_sentence_221

Catalan uses the Latin script, with some added symbols and digraphs. Catalan language_sentence_222

The Catalan orthography is systematic and largely phonologically based. Catalan language_sentence_223

Standardization of Catalan was among the topics discussed during the First International Congress of the Catalan Language, held in Barcelona October 1906. Catalan language_sentence_224

Subsequently, the Philological Section of the Institut d'Estudis Catalans (IEC, founded in 1911) published the Normes ortogràfiques in 1913 under the direction of Antoni Maria Alcover and Pompeu Fabra. Catalan language_sentence_225

In 1932, Valencian writers and intellectuals gathered in Castelló de la Plana to make a formal adoption of the so-called Normes de Castelló, a set of guidelines following Pompeu Fabra's Catalan language norms. Catalan language_sentence_226

Catalan language_table_general_12

Pronunciation of Catalan special characters and digraphs (Central Catalan)Catalan language_table_caption_12
Catalan language_header_cell_12_0_0 PronunciationCatalan language_header_cell_12_0_1 ExamplesCatalan language_header_cell_12_0_2
çCatalan language_header_cell_12_1_0 /s/Catalan language_cell_12_1_1 feliç [fəˈlis] ("happy")Catalan language_cell_12_1_2
guCatalan language_header_cell_12_2_0 /ɡ/ ([ɡ~ɣ]) before i and eCatalan language_cell_12_2_1 guerra [ˈɡɛrə] ("war")Catalan language_cell_12_2_2
/ɡw/ elsewhereCatalan language_cell_12_3_0 guant [ˈɡwan] ("glove")Catalan language_cell_12_3_1
igCatalan language_header_cell_12_4_0 [tʃ] in final positionCatalan language_cell_12_4_1 raig [ˈratʃ] ("trickle")Catalan language_cell_12_4_2
ixCatalan language_header_cell_12_5_0 /ʃ/ ([jʃ] in some dialects)Catalan language_cell_12_5_1 caixa [ˈkaʃə] ("box")Catalan language_cell_12_5_2
llCatalan language_header_cell_12_6_0 /ʎ/Catalan language_cell_12_6_1 lloc [ʎɔk] ("place")Catalan language_cell_12_6_2
l·lCatalan language_header_cell_12_7_0 Normatively /l:/, but usually /l/Catalan language_cell_12_7_1 novel·la [nuˈβɛlə] ("novel")Catalan language_cell_12_7_2
nyCatalan language_header_cell_12_8_0 /ɲ/Catalan language_cell_12_8_1 Catalunya [kətəˈɫuɲə] ("Catalonia")Catalan language_cell_12_8_2
quCatalan language_header_cell_12_9_0 /k/ before i and eCatalan language_cell_12_9_1 qui [ˈki] ("who")Catalan language_cell_12_9_2
/kw/ before other vowelsCatalan language_cell_12_10_0 quatre [ˈkwatrə] ("four")Catalan language_cell_12_10_1
ssCatalan language_header_cell_12_11_0 /s/

Intervocalic s is pronounced /z/Catalan language_cell_12_11_1

grossa [ˈɡɾɔsə] ("big-feminine)"

casa [ˈkazə] ("house")Catalan language_cell_12_11_2

tg, tjCatalan language_header_cell_12_12_0 [ddʒ]Catalan language_cell_12_12_1 fetge [ˈfeddʒə] ("liver"), mitjó [midˈdʒo] ("sock")Catalan language_cell_12_12_2
txCatalan language_header_cell_12_13_0 [tʃ]Catalan language_cell_12_13_1 despatx [dəsˈpatʃ] ("office")Catalan language_cell_12_13_2
tzCatalan language_header_cell_12_14_0 [ddz]Catalan language_cell_12_14_1 dotze [ˈdoddzə] ("twelve")Catalan language_cell_12_14_2

Catalan language_table_general_13

Letters and digraphs with contextually conditioned pronunciations (Central Catalan)Catalan language_table_caption_13
Catalan language_header_cell_13_0_0 NotesCatalan language_header_cell_13_0_1 ExamplesCatalan language_header_cell_13_0_2
cCatalan language_header_cell_13_1_0 /s/ before i and e

corresponds to ç in other contextsCatalan language_cell_13_1_1

feliç ("happy-masculine-singular") - felices ("happy-feminine-plural")

caço ("I hunt") - caces ("you hunt")Catalan language_cell_13_1_2

gCatalan language_header_cell_13_2_0 /ʒ/ before e and i

corresponds to j in other positionsCatalan language_cell_13_2_1

envejar ("to envy") - envegen ("they envy")Catalan language_cell_13_2_2
final g + stressed i, and final ig before other vowels,

are pronounced [tʃ] corresponds to j~g or tj~tg in other positionsCatalan language_cell_13_3_0

boig ['bɔtʃ] ("mad-masculine") - boja ['bɔʒə] ("mad-feminine") -boges ['bɔʒəs] ("mad-feminine plural")

desig [də'zitʃ] ("wish") - desitjar ("to wish") - desitgem ("we wish")Catalan language_cell_13_3_1

guCatalan language_header_cell_13_4_0 /ɡ/ before e and i

corresponds to g in other positionsCatalan language_cell_13_4_1

botiga ("shop") - botigues ("shops")Catalan language_cell_13_4_2
Catalan language_header_cell_13_5_0 /ɡw/ before e and i

corresponds to gu in other positionsCatalan language_cell_13_5_1

llengua ("language") - llengües ("languages")Catalan language_cell_13_5_2
quCatalan language_header_cell_13_6_0 /k/ before e and i

corresponds to c in other positionsCatalan language_cell_13_6_1

vaca ("cow") - vaques ("cows")Catalan language_cell_13_6_2
Catalan language_header_cell_13_7_0 /kw/ before e and i

corresponds to qu in other positionsCatalan language_cell_13_7_1

obliqua ("oblique-feminine") - obliqües ("oblique-feminine plural")Catalan language_cell_13_7_2
xCatalan language_header_cell_13_8_0 [ʃ~tʃ] initially and in onsets after a consonant

[ʃ] after i otherwise, [ɡz] before stress, [ks] afterCatalan language_cell_13_8_1

xarxa [ˈʃarʃə] ("net")

guix [ˈɡiʃ] ("chalk") exacte [əɡˈzaktə] ("exact"), fax [ˈfaks] ("fax")Catalan language_cell_13_8_2

Grammar Catalan language_section_35

Main article: Catalan grammar Catalan language_sentence_227

The grammar of Catalan is similar to other Romance languages. Catalan language_sentence_228

Features include: Catalan language_sentence_229

Catalan language_unordered_list_6

Gender and number inflection Catalan language_section_36

In gender inflection, the most notable feature is (compared to Portuguese, Spanish or Italian), the loss of the typical masculine suffix -o. Catalan language_sentence_230

Thus, the alternance of -o/-a, has been replaced by ø/-a. Catalan language_sentence_231

There are only a few exceptions, like minso/minsa ("scarce"). Catalan language_sentence_232

Many not completely predictable morphological alternations may occur, such as: Catalan language_sentence_233

Catalan language_unordered_list_7

  • Affrication: boig/boja ("insane") vs. lleig/lletja ("ugly")Catalan language_item_7_32
  • Loss of n: pla/plana ("flat") vs. segon/segona ("second")Catalan language_item_7_33
  • Final obstruent devoicing: sentit/sentida ("felt") vs. dit/dita ("said")Catalan language_item_7_34

Catalan has few suppletive couplets, like Italian and Spanish, and unlike French. Catalan language_sentence_234

Thus, Catalan has noi/noia ("boy"/"girl") and gall/gallina ("cock"/"hen"), whereas French has garçon/fille and coq/poule. Catalan language_sentence_235

There is a tendency to abandon traditionally gender-invariable adjectives in favor of marked ones, something prevalent in Occitan and French. Catalan language_sentence_236

Thus, one can find bullent/bullenta ("boiling") in contrast with traditional bullent/bullent. Catalan language_sentence_237

As in the other Western Romance languages, the main plural expression is the suffix -s, which may create morphological alternations similar to the ones found in gender inflection, albeit more rarely. Catalan language_sentence_238

The most important one is the addition of -o- before certain consonant groups, a phonetic phenomenon that does not affect feminine forms: el pols/els polsos ("the pulse"/"the pulses") vs. la pols/les pols ("the dust"/"the dusts"). Catalan language_sentence_239

Determiners Catalan language_section_37

The inflection of determinatives is complex, specially because of the high number of elisions, but is similar to the neighboring languages. Catalan language_sentence_240

Catalan has more contractions of preposition + article than Spanish, like dels ("of + the [plural]"), but not as many as Italian (which has sul, col, nel, etc.). Catalan language_sentence_241

Central Catalan has abandoned almost completely unstressed possessives (mon, etc.) in favor of constructions of article + stressed forms (el meu, etc.), a feature shared with Italian. Catalan language_sentence_242

Personal pronouns Catalan language_section_38

Catalan language_table_general_14

Catalan stressed pronounsCatalan language_table_caption_14
Catalan language_header_cell_14_0_0 singularCatalan language_header_cell_14_0_2 pluralCatalan language_header_cell_14_0_3
1st personCatalan language_header_cell_14_1_0 jo, miCatalan language_cell_14_1_2 nosaltresCatalan language_cell_14_1_3
2nd personCatalan language_header_cell_14_2_0 informalCatalan language_header_cell_14_2_1 tuCatalan language_cell_14_2_2 vosaltresCatalan language_cell_14_2_3
formalCatalan language_header_cell_14_3_0 vostèCatalan language_cell_14_3_1 vostèsCatalan language_cell_14_3_2
respectfulCatalan language_header_cell_14_4_0 (vós)Catalan language_cell_14_4_1
3rd personCatalan language_header_cell_14_5_0 masculineCatalan language_header_cell_14_5_1 ellCatalan language_cell_14_5_2 ellsCatalan language_cell_14_5_3
feminineCatalan language_header_cell_14_6_0 ellaCatalan language_cell_14_6_1 ellesCatalan language_cell_14_6_2

Main article: Catalan personal pronouns Catalan language_sentence_243

The morphology of Catalan personal pronouns is complex, specially in unstressed forms, which are numerous (13 distinct forms, compared to 11 in Spanish or 9 in Italian). Catalan language_sentence_244

Features include the gender-neutral ho and the great degree of freedom when combining different unstressed pronouns (65 combinations). Catalan language_sentence_245

Catalan pronouns exhibit T–V distinction, like all other Romance languages (and most European languages, but not Modern English). Catalan language_sentence_246

This feature implies the use of a different set of second person pronouns for formality. Catalan language_sentence_247

This flexibility allows Catalan to use extraposition extensively, much more than French or Spanish. Catalan language_sentence_248

Thus, Catalan can have m'hi recomanaren ("they recommended me to him"), whereas in French one must say ils m'ont recommandé à lui, and Spanish me recomendaron a él. Catalan language_sentence_249

This allows the placement of almost any nominal term as a sentence topic, without having to use so often the passive voice (as in French or English), or identifying the direct object with a preposition (as in Spanish). Catalan language_sentence_250

Verbs Catalan language_section_39

Catalan language_table_general_15

Simple forms of a regular verb of the first conjugation: portar ("to bring")Catalan language_table_caption_15
Non-finiteCatalan language_header_cell_15_0_0 FormCatalan language_header_cell_15_0_1
InfinitiveCatalan language_cell_15_1_0 portarCatalan language_cell_15_1_1
GerundCatalan language_cell_15_2_0 portantCatalan language_cell_15_2_1
Past participleCatalan language_cell_15_3_0 portat (portat, portada, portats, portades)Catalan language_cell_15_3_1
IndicativeCatalan language_header_cell_15_4_0 joCatalan language_header_cell_15_4_1 tuCatalan language_header_cell_15_4_2 ell / ella

[vostè]Catalan language_header_cell_15_4_3

nosaltresCatalan language_header_cell_15_4_4 vosaltres

[vós]Catalan language_header_cell_15_4_5

ells / elles

[vostès]Catalan language_header_cell_15_4_6

PresentCatalan language_cell_15_5_0 portoCatalan language_cell_15_5_1 portesCatalan language_cell_15_5_2 portaCatalan language_cell_15_5_3 portemCatalan language_cell_15_5_4 porteuCatalan language_cell_15_5_5 portenCatalan language_cell_15_5_6
ImperfectCatalan language_cell_15_6_0 portavaCatalan language_cell_15_6_1 portavesCatalan language_cell_15_6_2 portavaCatalan language_cell_15_6_3 portàvemCatalan language_cell_15_6_4 portàveuCatalan language_cell_15_6_5 portavenCatalan language_cell_15_6_6
Preterite (archaic)Catalan language_cell_15_7_0 portíCatalan language_cell_15_7_1 portaresCatalan language_cell_15_7_2 portàCatalan language_cell_15_7_3 portàremCatalan language_cell_15_7_4 portàreuCatalan language_cell_15_7_5 portarenCatalan language_cell_15_7_6
FutureCatalan language_cell_15_8_0 portaréCatalan language_cell_15_8_1 portaràsCatalan language_cell_15_8_2 portaràCatalan language_cell_15_8_3 portaremCatalan language_cell_15_8_4 portareuCatalan language_cell_15_8_5 portaranCatalan language_cell_15_8_6
ConditionalCatalan language_cell_15_9_0 portariaCatalan language_cell_15_9_1 portariesCatalan language_cell_15_9_2 portariaCatalan language_cell_15_9_3 portaríemCatalan language_cell_15_9_4 portaríeuCatalan language_cell_15_9_5 portarienCatalan language_cell_15_9_6
SubjunctiveCatalan language_header_cell_15_10_0 joCatalan language_header_cell_15_10_1 tuCatalan language_header_cell_15_10_2 ell / ella

[vostè]Catalan language_header_cell_15_10_3

nosaltresCatalan language_header_cell_15_10_4 vosaltres

[vós]Catalan language_header_cell_15_10_5

ells / elles

[vostès]Catalan language_header_cell_15_10_6

PresentCatalan language_cell_15_11_0 portiCatalan language_cell_15_11_1 portisCatalan language_cell_15_11_2 portiCatalan language_cell_15_11_3 portemCatalan language_cell_15_11_4 porteuCatalan language_cell_15_11_5 portinCatalan language_cell_15_11_6
ImperfectCatalan language_cell_15_12_0 portésCatalan language_cell_15_12_1 portéssisCatalan language_cell_15_12_2 portésCatalan language_cell_15_12_3 portéssimCatalan language_cell_15_12_4 portéssiuCatalan language_cell_15_12_5 portessinCatalan language_cell_15_12_6
ImperativeCatalan language_header_cell_15_13_0 joCatalan language_header_cell_15_13_1 tuCatalan language_header_cell_15_13_2 ell / ella

[vostè]Catalan language_header_cell_15_13_3

nosaltresCatalan language_header_cell_15_13_4 vosaltres

[vós]Catalan language_header_cell_15_13_5

ells / elles

[vostès]Catalan language_header_cell_15_13_6

Catalan language_cell_15_14_0 Catalan language_cell_15_14_1 portaCatalan language_cell_15_14_2 portiCatalan language_cell_15_14_3 portemCatalan language_cell_15_14_4 porteuCatalan language_cell_15_14_5 portinCatalan language_cell_15_14_6

Like all the Romance languages, Catalan verbal inflection is more complex than the nominal. Catalan language_sentence_251

Suffixation is omnipresent, whereas morphological alternations play a secondary role. Catalan language_sentence_252

Vowel alternances are active, as well as infixation and suppletion. Catalan language_sentence_253

However, these are not as productive as in Spanish, and are mostly restricted to irregular verbs. Catalan language_sentence_254

The Catalan verbal system is basically common to all Western Romance, except that most dialects have replaced the synthetic indicative perfect with a periphrastic form of anar ("to go") + infinitive. Catalan language_sentence_255

Catalan verbs are traditionally divided into three conjugations, with vowel themes -a-, -e-, -i-, the last two being split into two subtypes. Catalan language_sentence_256

However, this division is mostly theoretical. Catalan language_sentence_257

Only the first conjugation is nowadays productive (with about 3500 common verbs), whereas the third (the subtype of servir, with about 700 common verbs) is semiproductive. Catalan language_sentence_258

The verbs of the second conjugation are fewer than 100, and it is not possible to create new ones, except by compounding. Catalan language_sentence_259

Syntax Catalan language_section_40

Main article: Catalan syntax Catalan language_sentence_260

The grammar of Catalan follows the general pattern of Western Romance languages. Catalan language_sentence_261

The primary word order is subject–verb–object. Catalan language_sentence_262

However, word order is very flexible. Catalan language_sentence_263

Commonly, verb-subject constructions are used to achieve a semantic effect. Catalan language_sentence_264

The sentence "The train has arrived" could be translated as Ha arribat el tren or El tren ha arribat. Catalan language_sentence_265

Both sentences mean "the train has arrived", but the former puts a focus on the train, while the latter puts a focus on the arrival. Catalan language_sentence_266

This subtle distinction is described as "what you might say while waiting in the station" versus "what you might say on the train." Catalan language_sentence_267

Catalan names Catalan language_section_41

Main article: Catalan names Catalan language_sentence_268

In Spain, every person officially has two surnames, one of which is the father's first surname and the other is the mother's first surname. Catalan language_sentence_269

The law contemplates the possibility of joining both surnames with the Catalan conjunction i ("and"). Catalan language_sentence_270

Sample text Catalan language_section_42

Selected text from Manuel de Pedrolo's 1970 novel Un amor fora ciutat ("A love affair outside the city"). Catalan language_sentence_271

Loanwords in Catalan and English Catalan language_section_43

Catalan language_table_general_16

English wordCatalan language_header_cell_16_0_0 Catalan wordCatalan language_header_cell_16_0_1 Catalan meaningCatalan language_header_cell_16_0_2 NotesCatalan language_header_cell_16_0_3
barracksCatalan language_cell_16_1_0 Catalan language_cell_16_1_1 "mud hut"Catalan language_cell_16_1_2 Eng < Fr baraques < Cat/Sp barracas.Catalan language_cell_16_1_3
barracoonCatalan language_cell_16_2_0 orCatalan language_cell_16_2_1 "improvised hut"Catalan language_cell_16_2_2 Eng < Spanish barracón < barraca (Sp < Cat).Catalan language_cell_16_2_3
Catalan language_cell_16_3_0 Catalan language_cell_16_3_1 "to arise"Catalan language_cell_16_3_2 Eng < Middle French sourgir < Old Catalan surgir.Catalan language_cell_16_3_3
paellaCatalan language_cell_16_4_0 Catalan language_cell_16_4_1 "small cooking pot"Catalan language_cell_16_4_2 Eng < Cat < Old French pael(l)e (mod. poêle 'skillet') < Latin patella 'small pan' (> Sp padilla).Catalan language_cell_16_4_3
cul-de-sacCatalan language_cell_16_5_0 Catalan language_cell_16_5_1 "with no exit"Catalan language_cell_16_5_2 French < Old Catalan/Occitan (> English).Catalan language_cell_16_5_3
cucumberCatalan language_cell_16_6_0 Catalan language_cell_16_6_1 "fruit used in salads"Catalan language_cell_16_6_2 Eng < Old French / Occitan cocombre.Catalan language_cell_16_6_3

See also Catalan language_section_44

Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: language.