This is the website of the Accademia della Crusca, the literary academy established in Florence in the 16th century to preserve the Italian language. The site contains information on the Academy's history, structure, publications, various activities and projects concerning the Italian language. Particularly useful is the site's biblioteca virtuale (Virtual Library) with its sections: fabbrica dell'italiano (Italian language factory); vocabolario 1612 (the Academy's Dictionary); and la Crusca in rete (Crusca online). From this website users can also access the Academy's library's and archive's online catalogues. The site also offers advice on linguistic issues raised by users. It periodically publishes articles on specific linguistic topics, as well as bibliographies. The section entitled parole nuove (new words) focuses on Italian neologisms. The site has a search facility and site map to facilitate navigation.
"ALIAS : approccio alla lingua italiana per allievi stranieri" is a project coordinated by the Ministero della Pubblica Istruzione (Ministry for Public Education) and the University of Venice Ca' Foscari, aiming to promote research into Italian as a second language. This website makes available interesting essays on issues such as: problems associated with Italian as a second language; integration of foreign pupils in Italian schools; cultural considerations related to teaching Italian to foreigners. Users can print out these essays and download modules designed to aid teaching Italian to both children and adults. The site also provides annotated specialised bibliographies covering, for example, teaching Italian to adults and to students from Arab countries. There is a list of films suggested as teaching aids, which cover, as their main theme, the interaction amongst different cultures. A user forum offers academic discussion on issues raised by the site to be made. Users can search the site for material. This resource would be of value both to teachers of Italian and students of linguistics. Additionally, the site includes much interesting secondary material and useful teaching aids.
The website BADIP : Banca Dati dell'Italiano Parlato, from the Karl-Franzens-Universität of Graz, makes available materials for the analysis and study of spoken Italian language. Users are also invited to collaborate with the development of the database by identifying problems with the site, communicating particular needs for studies and research, and suggesting further material. At the time of this review the site held a main collection of texts of spoken Italian (Corpus LIP - corpus del lessico di frequenza dell'italiano parlato), which was created between 1990 and 1992 by a group of linguists directed by Prof Tullio De Mauro. It contains about 469 texts (of about 490,000 words) which were collected from four cities: Milan; Florence; Rome; and Naples. The section Tipologia dei testi demonstrates how the texts have been gathered into five main groups, depending on how and where the dialogue or conversation took place. Users can also find data on the kinds of speakers involved in the dialogues and the length of the conversations. The transcriptions contain grammatical notes and other linguistic explanations.
The BLLDB online presents an online version of the key publication Bibliography of Linguistic Literature (BLL), which is published annually by the University Library, Frankfurt am Main. It is a valuable source for linguistics in general, and for English, German and Romance (Italian and Spanish) linguistics in particular. The bibliography includes: journal articles; articles of conference proceedings; monographs; dissertations; and Festschrifts. The BLLDB digitalizes all volumes of the BLL dating back to 1971, thereby making available some 354,000 citations. The database is updated quarterly and around 10,000 citations are added per year. Detailed instructions on how to use and search the database and a history of the project are given. Users can browse an index of journals and publications by type, for example: research projects; newsletters; linguistic institutions; history of linguistics; and countries/regions. The site is in English and German. This resource is extremely useful for scholars of linguistics as a means of locating secondary sources.
CLIPS : corpora e lessici di italiano parlato e scritto (corpus and vocabulary of spoken and written Italian) is a project hosted by the University of Naples. It makes available online a wealth of written documents and audio files, which are free to use for research purposes. Users can access about 100 hours of speech from 15 different cities in Italy: Bari; Bergamo; Bologna; Cagliari; Catanzaro; Florence; Genoa; Lecce; Milan; Naples; Palermo; Parma; Perugia; Rome; and Venice. Male and female voices are equally represented. Various recordings are transcribed to read in PDF. A variety of different text typologies have been used, such as: radio and television broadcasts; interviews; dialogues; non professional speakers reading aloud; telephone conversations between 300 speakers and a hotel desk operator; read speech by a selection of professional speakers recorded in an anechoic chamber. The project has been co-ordinated by various universities and colleges in Italy and a detailed outline of its development is given by Federico Albano Leoni, the Project Director. This resource is an extremely valuable source of primary material for scholars of Italian linguistics; it would also be of use to teachers of Italian looking for new audio and printed material containing contemporary Italian for use in class.
The project consists of designing and creating a corpus of business Italian. The corpus is intended to be used as a resource for descriptive and applied studies of Italian for specific purposes such as corpus linguistics, terminology, lexicography, and foreign language teaching. The resource is available via the Oxford Text Archive (OTA) website and can be downloaded as a zipped plain text and SGML file. It is necessary to obtain approval from the Oxford Text Archive before download, and a link is provided to the terms and conditions of use, and a form to apply for permission.
The Flinders University Language Group Online Review (FULGOR) (ISSN 1446-9219) is a peer reviewed, electronic journal which publishes original research in the fields of French, Italian, Modern Greek and Spanish Studies; Applied Linguistics; Language education; and Migration Studies. Published bi-annually, with the first issue having appeared in March 2002, the full-text articles are freely available as either PDF or HTML. Articles focus on a variety of areas, from language learning and teaching to literary studies. More specifically, articles have examined the difficulty surrounding the interpretation of the eight Bolgia in Dante's Inferno; the role of the victim in the work of Uruguayan playwright, Florencio Sánchez; the work of radical French female film-makers in the context of contemporary debate on pornography and censorship; reading in a foreign language; and teaching mixed-ability groups. Italian Studies are particularly well-represented in this journal as is Latin American literature. Book reviews of related publications are also included.
Ianua is a peer-reviewed electronic journal devoted to Romance philology and linguistics, and published by Romania Minor, a Catalan research group interested in minority Romance languages. Journal contributions, which are available as PDFs and may be written in any Romance language, are diverse and encompass such topics as: parallels between the development of vulgar Arabic and Romance languages; poetry from Aragon and Galicia; multilingualism in the European Union; Catalan in Andorra; and comparing political language in Romania to that of the Republic of Moldova. There is also an article on whether the presence of Welsh in schools is working to prevent language decline. Links to related online journals are provided. The journal itself is equally navigable in English, Spanish and Catalan, and is a solid, quality contribution to the field.
The Italnet project consists of two major collections of interest to linguists: the Opera del Vocabolario Italiano and FIOLA, the Franco-Italian online archive. In addition to these, the website provides links to: the International Gramsci Society home page and online journal; the inventory catalogue of the drawings in the Biblioteca Ambrosiana, Milan; and the website of the exhibition Renaissance Dante in print (1472-1629). The Opera del Vocabolario Italiano is a database of early Italian writing, including works written before 1375 (the year of Boccaccio's death). It currently contains approximately 2,000 documents, including the prose and poetry of Dante, Petrarch, Boccaccio, and other less famous poets, and also merchants' records and medieval chronicles.
The collection totals over 21 million running words, and around 480,000 distinct lexical forms. The texts have been classified by genre, and information is also available on their date of composition and linguistic area. The collection is available as a searchable database over the Internet, provided the user is registered with ItalNet, or they are accessing the database via an ARTFL subscribing institution. One can search for single and multiple words and phrases across the whole collection, or limit searches to single authors and works, time periods and linguistic area. Results are available as detailed concordance or keyword-in-context (the latter showing a single line of text only for each occurrence). For each occurrence, an abbreviated reference is given (indicating page numbers), and a full bibliography is attached at the end of the results. In addition, results can also be obtained as a table listing the number of occurrences of the keyword/phrase and the reference, in descending order of popularity. This is expressed as a simple count rather than a percentage. Depending on one's Web browser, one may print off or save results as HTML or plain text files. It is not possible to access the full-text of any single work contained in the Opera del Vocabolario Italiano.
FIOLA - Franco-Italian online archive is a new and at present very small collection of texts written in a mix of French and Italian. It currently contains only two documents: 'La Guerra di Attila' and 'l'Entrée d'Espagne', though further texts are being prepared for inclusion. It will concentrate on works written between the 12th century and the Renaissance. The collection is available as a searchable database. One can look for words or phrases. Results give a count for all occurrences, and concordance. It is possible to browse through the full-texts of FIOLA, though for this facility an ARTFL username and password must first be obtained.
Limba e curtura de sa Sardigna is an interesting website which focuses on Sardinian language and culture. It will be of interest to linguists and those studying Italy's regional identity and languages. The site is developed and maintained by the Free University of Berlin and the University of Cologne. Within its various sections, users will find: a basic dictionary of the Sardinian language; a sketch of Sardinian history; information on this language and its varieties; a linguistic map; and a database of texts in Sardinian. The site also offers a selection of articles and essays on linguistic issues, debates related to proposals for the standardisation of the Sardinian orthographic system, as well as on the laws for the protection of regional and minority languages in Italy. Users will also find links to other relevant online resources, such as: other dictionaries; websites for specialist publishing houses; sites of associations and research centres; and information on relevant publications. The site is available in Italian and Sardinian, with some texts on the site also available in German.
Orbis Latinus is an outstanding Web resource devoted to the grammar of the Romance languages. The site comprises descriptive grammars for the different languages (Spanish, Portuguese, French, Italian, French and Rumanian) with material presented by tables, schemes and simple rules. Complementing these descriptions are numerous articles that offer more specific linguistic information, such as language development, dialect, the literary tradition, and more. Original texts are often available to provide examples of language development. Latin is explored at length in similar terms, and maps illustrate the dispersion of particular languages. Local varieties such as Brazilian Portuguese, Latin American Spanish, and Canadian French, and other less widely-spoken romance languages (Asturian, Galician, Catalan, Extremaduran, Occitan, Lombard, Venetan, Walloon, and so on) also have extensive informative pages devoted to them.
As well as articles on, for example, phonology and writing, contrastive linguistics, and social and cultural background, the site also contains such unique features as a list of Arabic loan-words in Spanish and a study of French borrowings into Italian. The site is updated monthly so regular visits and browsing are recommended: a 'What is new' section permits easy access to newly added articles. Students and teachers of all romance languages will find this a genuinely invaluable resource, serving both as a fantastic reference point and a library of detailed related study.
Romanitas : lenguas y literaturas romances (ISSN 1937-5697) is an online peer-reviewed journal that publishes articles on various aspects of the culture, literature, and languages of Romance-language countries. Established in 2006, the journal also includes book reviews, interviews with key figures in the fields of linguistics and literature, and annotated bibliographies. Whilst the focus is on literary and linguistic issues, the journal will publish multi-disciplinary contributions that consider these areas in relation to others such as: film; the arts; philosophy; history; theatre; and music. Each article is prefaced by a short biography of its author and is available to print. Past articles cover topics including: reading in a second language; Fernando Pessoa's Alberto Caeiro as the wise fool; the unrepresentable in Ossi di seppia by Eugenio Montale; order and disorder in La vieille fille by Balzac; and intermediate French online: pedagogical uses of multiple interfaces. Other figures considered are: George Fourest; Francisco Márquez Villanueva; José Asunción Silva; Diego Torres Villaroel; and Francisco Goya.
All content in the journal is licensed for use under Creative Commons and users should note the instructions on how to cite references from the journal. The journal's mission statement, submission guidelines, and editorial policy are all available on the site. The journal is directed by academics from the University of Puerto Rico. Articles can be in English, Italian, French, Portuguese, and Spanish and the site itself is presented in all of these. A sub-page provides an extremely useful set of links to journal indexes and databases. In sum, this journal promises to contribute much of interest to the study of Romance-language cultures and would appeal to scholars of a wide range of disciplines, but to literature and linguistic specialists in particular.
Sa Limba Sarda is an interesting website that focuses on the Sardinian language. It will be of interest to linguists and those studying Italy's regional languages. The site offers a good Sardinian grammar guide, as well as translations of English and Italian texts into Sardinian. It also details the debates surrounding the proposal for the standardisation of the Sardinian language orthographic system, as well as outlining the laws for the protection of regional and minority languages in Italy. Users can also find links to other relevant online resources, such as: a dictionary of Sardinian language; websites of specialised publishing companies; online Sardinian newspapers; and others. The site is available in Italian, English and Sardinian.
The Società di Linguistica Italiana (Italian Society of Linguistics) is a society based in Rome that brings together linguistics scholars. This website makes available the Society's Bollettino (Bulletin), which provides information on conferences, members' publications, and developments in the field of linguistics. An archive of the Bulletin is provided from 1996 to the present. A list of the society's publications is given, with a list of contents for each work. News of relevant conferences and seminars is provided. A "Yearbook" provides details of linguistics and Italian language courses provided at Italian universities, with access to previous Yearbooks as well. The history of the Society and its statute are also included. A search facility and site map aid the user of this site. There is also a forum for user discussion. This resource would benefit those studying Italian linguistics, as a guide to secondary publications and as a source of current information.
WordReference.com makes available free online translation dictionaries for English-Italian; English-Spanish; English-French; and Spanish-French. Each of the main dictionaries has between 200,000 and 250,000 translations and if users cannot find the word they are looking for, they can search or ask in one of the forums. Similarly, queries about language usage can be answered in the forums and users can search an archive of hundreds of thousands of previous queries. The forums are divided initially by language and then by themes, such as: general vocabulary; grammar; specialized terminology; and resources. Statistics showing the number of threads and posts in each category are given. The forums cover other languages, including: German; Dutch; Arabic; Hebrew; Greek; Turkish; Japanese; Chinese; Romanian; and Latin. Users can download a toolbar onto their Web browser to facilitate searches. Of use are also English and Spanish monolingual dictionaries, and a thesaurus of over 200,000 Spanish synonyms and antonyms. This resource is extremely valuable as a tool for language learning and translation. It would also be a good resource for researchers in linguistics.