Dario Brancato


Towards the Definition of a Standard:
Spoken and Non-Verbal Languages in Early Modern Italy.

The linguistic debates of 16th-Century Italy, which converged in the standardization of Bembo's model, dealt from several viewpoints with the problem of which language had to be taught. Until the end of the 19th Century, the different procedures of learning Italian involved the sole reading of the classics, although sparse, scattered exceptions occurred, where spoken and non-verbal languages were considered. My paper aims to explore the latter and almost completely neglected attitude
towards the study of a language-- a neglect that is due to the existence of little evidence. I shall focus on the period between XVI and XVIII Century: a crucial age which eventually redefined the linguistic model of Italian from a literary to a national (and spoken) language.