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Gallurese (gadduresu) is a Southern Romance language and transitional between Sardinian and Corsican. It is spoken in the Gallura (Gaddura), northeastern Sardinia, including the town of Tempio Pausania (Tempiu).

Grammatical structure, pronunciation and many terms reflect a certain closeness to Corsican (many similarities with the southern Corsican dialects of Sartene and Porto-Vecchio) with which it shared some mutual influences due to close relationships in 17th century, but many words come from the Sardo logudorese variety of Sardinian, which was spoken in this area in the Middle Ages.

The Sassarese language, spoken in the area of Sassari, also has similar characteristics, even if it is more linked to Sardo logudorese and has a different, both geographical and historical, origin.


Typical constitutional elements of Gallurese

  • the plural form of nouns in -i (ghjanni or polti 'doors') like in Corsican and Italian, and not in -s like in Sardinian (jannas, portas), French, Spanish, Catalan, etc.
  • Latin 'll' has become -dd- (like casteddu, beddu 'castle', 'beautiful'), the same as in Sardinian and southern Corsican (but castellu, bellu in northern Corsican);
  • -r- modified to -l- (poltu 'port', while portu in Corsican and Sardinian);
  • -chj- and -ghj- sounds (ghjesgia 'church', occhji 'eyes'), like in Corsican, while Sardinian is cresia, ogros.
  • articles lu, la, li, like in former Corsican dialects (u, a, i in modern Corsican, su, sa, sos, sas in Sardinian);

Gallurese and its Corsican heritage

Gallurese is classified by some linguists as a dialect of Corsican, and by others as a dialect of Sardianian. A great deal of similarity exists between southern Corsican dialects and Gallurese, while there is relatively more distance from the neighbouring Logudorese Sardinian. However, the two varieties (Gallurese and Sardinian) have many elements in common and quite certainly have influenced each other; many speakers are bilingual in the two varieties.

The Sardinian language is conservative in terms of phonology and certain aspects of Vulgar Latin, and has had historical influence from Spanish and Catalan. Southern Corsican is paret of the dialect continuum of Corsican. Before French domination, standard Italian was for a short time the language of higher education of the island.

In scholastical classification, Gallurese is often considered a Sardinian language for two main, though not uncontroversial, reasons:

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