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Re: Language Identification - Continued

From:Jan van Steenbergen <ijzeren_jan@...>
Date:Friday, November 21, 2003, 10:32
--- Joseph Fatula skrzypszy:

> After some more conversations, I've accumulated quite a bit of data on > this mystery Slavic language. Here are some phrases and words, using the > transcription as explained below. Where words are different in this > message than the previous one, the newer ones are correct. I've just > gone through and rechecked all the words collected so far.
Quite an interesting phenomenon, this language! Well, for all I can say as an amateur semi-pseudo-quasi-Slavicist is that this is definitely nót Polish, nor is it any of the other "standard" languages. So what we are dealing here must be a dialect of some sort. My knowledge about Polish dialects is far from extensive, but I can tell for sure that this is not a Polish dialect either. Nor do I believe that this is Belarussian, Russian, or Ukrainian, not even a remote dialect. Others who suggested a form Slovak or Croatian are IMO closer to the truth. The examples you give show elements from both West, East, and South Slavic, which makes one suspect that we must be dealing with some kind of transitional or border dialect. My guess would be Rusyn (aka Ruthenian, Rusnak, Carpatho-Ukrainian, etc.), in particular one of its more Southern dialects. Rusyn is commonly known as the fourth East-Slavic language, but in fact it is mostly a rest group of several (five, IIRC) dialects with vast differences between each other, thoroughly influenced by the language(s) that surround(s) them. Some consider them conversative, peripherical dialects of Ukrainian, others think of them as one or more separate languages. Well, I can tell for sure that this is not the Lemko dialect. However, some googling showed me that there are great similarities with the variant that is spoken in the Vojvodina (I must admit, I didn't even know that there were Rusyns in that region): the infinitive on -ts <-c>, the world _keljo_, etc. For example, have a look here: <> Alternatively, but less likely, Hutsul could be a possibility (but merely because I have no data on it). If I may ask, where did you or your friend get these fragments? Does he know more about the language, and if not, can the fragments be corrupted by his ignorance of it? Jan