Published June 30, 2019
This video was recorded by Matteo Tignonsini in Ecuador. Lombard is spoken in the Lombardia region in Northern Italy, the South of Switzerland, and parts of eastern Piedmont and western Trentino. In this video Matteo shares with us that Lombard, like other regional languages, is often confused as an Italian dialect, even though UNESCO, ISO, and the broader linguistic community consider it its own language, and even though its closest relatives are French, Franco-Provençal, Romansch, and Occitan. Since Lombard suffers from speaker loss particularly in Italy, the fact that it is not officially recognized in Italy is a matter of concern. Lombard does not hold direct lineage with Italian. The Ligures are thought to have left a mark on the Lombard language, but the record has preserved much more of the Celtish influence, rendering it a Gallo-Romance language. Lombard has several varieties within the provinces of Italy, and its oldest literary tradition exists in Milan, where the Milanese dialect has been overshadowed by Italian as Italian immigrants were drawn to the city by industrialization after the Second World War. Lombard is spoken by almost four million people worldwide and is a Gallo-Romance language within the Italic branch of the Indo-European language family.