Documentation and analysis of an endangered language: aspects of the grammar
This website presents the main deliverable of a research project which was carried out between January and December 2013, with the financial support of the John S. Latsis Foundation. The project investigated central aspects of the grammar of Griko, focusing in particular on the morphosyntax of the verb. During this project, new data were collected and were subsequently transcribed, digitized, and stored in the on-line database available through this website.
Griko is a Greek dialect spoken in Puglia (province of Lecce), in the area of Southern Italy called Grecìa Salentina. It has been recognized as a minority language by the Parliament of Italy since 1999. Officially, Grecìa Salentina consists of 12 villages: Calimera, Carpignano Salentino, Castrignano dei Greci, Corigliano d'Otranto, Cutrofiano, Martano, Martignano, Melpignano, Sogliano Cavour, Soleto, Sternatia and Zollino. A precise estimate of the number of active users of the dialect is not currently available.
Griko is the means of expression of the people belonging to the local communities. Griko is also extremely interesting from the perspective of theoretical linguistics. As a Greek dialect, it interests scholars who study dialectal variation, as well as the history of Greek. Moreover, as Griko has been spoken alongside the local Romance variety, Salentino, as well as, more recently, Standard Italian, it is highly relevant for the proper understanding of contact-induced change.
This project would not have been possible without the financial support of the Latsis Foundation, as well as the help and enthusiasm of the people of Grecìa Salentina who took part in our research and helped us in more ways than we can acknowledge here.