Tsakonian

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A language of Greece

Alternate Names
Tsakonia
Population

200 (Salminen 2007).

Location

Kastanitsa, Sitena, Prastos, Leonidi, Pramatefti, Sapounakeika, Tyros, and Melana towns, possibly Korakovunio; Peloponnesos east coast. Isolated in summer in east Peloponnesus in mountains west of Leonidi; in winter Leonidi town area.

Language Status

8a (Moribund).

Dialects

Northern Tsakonian (Kastanista-Sitena), Propontis Tsakonian (Vatka-Havoutsi), Southern Tsakonian (Leonidio-Prastos). Derived from the Doric dialect spoken in Lakonia by ancient Spartans. Northern and Southern are reportedly mutually intelligible, but Propontis was more distinct, and more similar to standard Greek [ell]. Not inherently intelligible with modern Greek (Voegelin and Voegelin 1977). Lexical similarity: 70% or less with standard Greek [ell].

Language Use

Monolinguals existed in 1927. Few use Northern dialect. Most use Southern Tsakonian. Propontis Tsakonian has had no remaining speakers since 1970. Mostly elderly (Salminen 2007). Also use Greek [ell].

Language Development
Dictionary. Grammar.
Other Comments

Christian.