The relationship between Salaca Livonian and Courland Livonian dialects

Karl Pajusalu
2014 Eesti ja Soome-ugri Keeleteaduse Ajakiri  
The article examines the relationship between the two prominent forms of Livonian: Salaca Livonian, spoken on the territory of historical Livonia, and Courland Livonian. Salaca Livonian is compared to the two main dialects of Courland Livonian -the eastern and western dialects. Based on the Salaca Livonian data, the article focuses on the comparison of phonological and grammatical features, also presenting a brief comparison of core vocabulary. The form of Livonian spoken in the Salaca River
more » ... the Salaca River region of northern Latvia differed in several respects from Courland Livonian. Some Salaca Livonian phonological features, grammatical forms and vocabulary differ from all Courland Livonian dialects, while other features are shared between Salaca Livonian and one of the Courland Livonian dialects. Despite the greater geographical distance between them, Salaca Livonian shares more features with the western Courland Livonian dialect. The article attempts to explain these similarities. First, Latvian influence was stronger in the Salaca and western Courland Livonian dialect regions. Second, the peripheral location of these regions favored the preservation of archaic features. Third, the eastern dialect of Courland Livonian has been more innovative in several ways.
doi:10.12697/jeful.2014.5.1.08 fatcat:miqiduc62jd3xj26nedk556lrm