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|Pronunciation||[ɑrpiˈtɑ̃]; [patuˈe], [patuˈɑ]; [ɑrpəˈtɑ̃]|
|Native to||Italy, France, Switzerland|
|Region||Aosta Valley, Piedmont, Foggia, Franche-Comté, Savoie, Bresse, Bugey, Dombes, Beaujolais, Dauphiné, Lyonnais, Forez, Romandie|
includes 70,000 in France (1971 census)
Official language in
|protected by statute in Italy and Aosta Valley.|
Map of the Franco-Provençal Language Area:
Dark Blue: Protected. — Medium Blue: General regions.
Light Blue: Historical transition zone.
Franco-Provençal (Francoprovençal), Arpitan or Romand (in Switzerland) (Franco-Provençal: francoprovençâl, arpetan, patouès; Italian: francoprovenzale, arpitano; French: francoprovençal, arpitan, patois) is a Gallo-Romance language spoken in east-central France, western Switzerland, northwestern Italy, and in enclaves in the Province of Foggia in Apulia, Italy. Franco-Provençal has several distinct dialects and is separate from but closely related to neighboring Romance languages: Oïl languages, Occitan, Gallo-Italian, and Romansh. The name Franco-Provençal was given to the language by G. I. Ascoli in the 19th century because it shared features with French and Provençal without belonging to either. Arpitan, a neologism, is becoming a popular name for the language and the people who speak it. This name was popularized due to the lands where the Arpitan language is spoken or used to be the prevalent idiom, Arpitania. The name for the region comes from the term Arpes, meaning Alps in Arpitan.
Today, the largest number of Franco-Provençal speakers reside in the Aosta Valley, an autonomous region of Italy. The language is also spoken in alpine valleys in the province of Turin, two isolated towns in Foggia, and rural areas of the Romandie region of Switzerland. It is one of the three Gallo-Romance language families of France and is officially recognized as a regional language of France, but its use is marginal. Organizations are attempting to preserve it through cultural events, education, scholarly research, and publishing.
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