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Re: CHAT: Conpidgin (was: CHAT: Star Wars and its conlangs)

From:Tim Smith <timsmith@...>
Date:Thursday, May 27, 1999, 22:09
At 07:11 PM 5/25/99 +0200, Kristian Jensen wrote:
>Gary Shannon wrote: > >>Speaking of pidgins, has any conlanger out there ever designed a >>conpidgin? That might be a fun project, especially if it were >>designed to be about 50% comprehensible to a speaker of the base >>language. You could drive your English speaking friends nuts by >>talking to them in your own English-based conpidgin that they could >>almost, but not quite understand. <hehe>
The juxtaposition of this and the "Gaudete" thread reminded me of a linguistic curiosity that I thought would appeal to some people on this list: an "Italian" madrigal that's actually in what looks to me like an Italian-based pidgin. It was written by Orlando di Lasso (1532-1594), a.k.a. Roland de Lassus, a.k.a. Rolandus Lassus, one of the most "international" of the great Renaissance composers. (He set texts in Latin, Italian, French, and German.) This is supposed to be a parody of a German mercenary soldier serenading an Italian woman. (As one program note put it, this soldier has a rather crude understanding of Italian -- and of love.) I don't know whether it's an actual pidgin used by German mercenaries in Italy or just something that di Lasso made up (which would make him a conlanger as well as a composer!). Anyway, here it is: Matona, mia cara, mi follere canzon, Cantar sotto finestra, lantze buon compagnon. Don don don, diri diri don don don, Don don don, diri diri don don don. Ti prego m'ascoltare, che mi cantar de bon, E mi ti foller bene, come greco e capon. Don don don.... Comandar alle cazze, cazzar con le falcon, Mi ti portar becazze, grasse come rognon. Don don don.... Si mi non saper dire, tante belle razon, Petrarcha mi non saper, ne fonte d'Helicon. Don don don.... Se ti mi foller bene, mi non esser poltron, Mi ficcar tutta notte urtar come monton. Don don don.... The only English translations of this that I have available is so heavily bowdlerized that even I, with my very limited knowledge of Italian, can see that it's almost totally unrelated to the original, so I won't inflict it on you. I suspect that the original is full of double-entendres that you'd have to be fluent in both German and Italian to appreciate. - Tim ------------------------------------------------- Tim Smith Get your facts first and then you can distort them as you please. - Mark Twain