Requests for new languages/Wikipedia Karelian 2

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The language is eligible for a project, which means that the subdomain can be created once there is an active community and a localized interface, as described in the language proposal policy. You can discuss the creation of this language project on this page.

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A committee member provided the following comment:

It is understood that only Karelian and the Latin script will be used
  • The community needs to develop an active test project; it must remain active until approval (automated statistics, recent changes). It is generally considered active if the analysis lists at least three active, not-grayed-out editors listed in the sections for the previous few months.
  • The community needs to complete required MediaWiki interface translations in that language (about localization, translatewiki, check completion).
  • The community needs to discuss and complete the settings table below:
What Value Example / Explanation
Language code krl (SILGlottolog) A valid ISO 639-1 or 639-3 language code, like "fr", "de", "nso", ...
Language name Karelian Language name in English
Language name karjala Language name in your language. This will appear in the language list on Special:Preferences, in the interwiki sidebar on other wikis, ...
Language Wikidata item Q33557 - item has currently the following values:
Item about the language at Wikidata. It would normally include the Wikimedia language code, name of the language, etc. Please complete at Wikidata if needed.
Directionality LTR Is the language written from left to right (LTR) or from right to left (RTL)?
Links Links to previous requests, or references to external websites or documents.

Project name "Wikipedia" in your language
Project namespace usually the same as the project name
Project talk namespace "Wikipedia talk" (the discussion namespace of the project namespace)
Enable uploads no Default is "no". Preferably, files should be uploaded to Commons.
If you want, you can enable local file uploading, either by any user ("yes") or by administrators only ("admin").
Notes: (1) This setting can be changed afterwards. The setting can only be "yes" or "admin" at approval if the test creates an Exemption Doctrine Policy (EDP) first. (2) Files on Commons can be used on all Wikis. (3) Uploading fair-use images is not allowed on Commons (more info). (4) Localisation to your language may be insufficient on Commons.
Optional settings
Project logo This needs to be an SVG image (instructions for logo creation).
Default project timezone Europe/Helsinki "Continent/City", e.g. "Europe/Brussels" or "America/Mexico City" (see list of valid timezones)
Additional namespaces For example, a Wikisource would need "Page", "Page talk", "Index", "Index talk", "Author", "Author talk".
Additional settings Anything else that should be set
submit Phabricator task. It will include everything automatically, except additional namespaces/settings. After creating the task, add a link to the comment.


This proposal is a re-opening of the old Karelian proposal, rejected during the reform of the language proposal process. According to the Ethnologue (15th edition), Karelian has 128,000 native speakers, most of whom are located in the Republic of Karelia within the Russian Federation. The closely related Livvi (ISO 639-3 olo; also known as Olonets Karelian) is spoken by some 19,000 people and Ludian (ISO 639-3 lud) by 5,000 people. Karelian proper has Northern dialects, which are linguistically close to Finnish, and Southern dialects, the most important of which is Tver Karelian. Karelian is currently considered a distinct language from Finnish and it has a separate literature and orthography. Karelian proper, Livvi and Ludian are sometimes considered dialects of one language, sometimes separate languages. The current Incubator test accepts articles in Karelian proper (Northern and Southern), Livvi and Ludian. Malhonen 16:49, 2 April 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Because of strong resistance to the first variant of proposal it is decided that this project will cover Karelian proper language (KRL code per se Karelian) including dilects as Tver Karelian which is not considered to be a separate language (like British and American English). As per Livvi and Ludian - they have their own ISO code and as the result their own capability to create a Wiki project. Sura 12:58, 26 February 2008 (UTC)[reply]


Arguments in favour[edit]

  • Strong Support: Presently there exists only three Wikipedias in languages of Baltic-Finnic branch: Finnish, Estonian and Võro. Karelian is the third biggest Baltic-Finnic language and it would be very logic if it will be the next one who will have it's own Wikipedia. Karelian has already a good test wikipedia. I think there could be one Karelian Wikipedia, where using of both Karelian literary languages - Karelian Proper and Livvi (Olonets) - could be accepted. Maybe there could be a bilingual (PropKar-Livvi) main page. -Võrok 10:40, 26 April 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support Karelisch is 'n bezönjere taal die waal get meer moog höbbe, daobiej 't wörd nog genog gesjpraoke! --Ooswesthoesbes 12:09, 25 June 2007 (UTC) Karelian deserves it and is has got enough (native) speakers.[reply]
No, it is not official. But i am support creation of Karelian Wikipedia. A.M.D.F. 20:24, 18 October 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Strong Support - if anything, the creation of this wikipedia can only benefit all of the dialects/separate related languages. This is a project, in which people a priori agree to cooperate between related languages - a rare example within the existing wikipedias (just look at the number of different Serbian wikis). If in the future proponents of olo or lud decide to separate their language, their experience within this (joint) wikipedia can certainly be a useful vehicle for their indpendent undertaking. And the existence of different versions of articles in different dialects/related languages only raises the awareness among the native speakers of these dialects. I know this is the case in the Armenian Wikipedia, where Eastern Armenian and Western Armenian peacefully coexist (while some may think they are sufficiently different to qualify for separate ISO codes and wikipedias). Seeing the differences from the language one is used too, makes one appreciate his/her native language even more. Teak 14:05, 15 August 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Strong Support. Wikipedia in Karelian will obviously help the language, which has several thousands of native speakers but is not represented very well in the internet. Additionally, it is good to see that speakers of different dialects opted for a single wikipedia, rather than creating a project for each dialect.--Yaroslav Blanter 19:34, 29 October 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Support. As for dialect problems, let it be Wikipedia in normative Karelian first with possibility for Tiverians, Liwi and Luddians to contribute also, and if it is a success it will might be made separate Wikipedias for this dialects. Sura 15:01, 10 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Strong Support. Karelian Wikipedia must be started in that language which has sufficient community for the moment. How very strange there was no Karelian portal in Wikipedia! Kalevala language must be supported!--Khazar II 12:56, 2 November 2008 (UTC)[reply]
With sysop rights, we may have different dialects in one Wikipedia ; Emiliano-Romagnolo has nine ! See e. g. here (« Sta pâgina la gh'é in dialèt ») --Budelberger 15:22, 11 December 2008 (UTC) ().[reply]
But it is recently prooved that Ludian stands as language of its own. Olonets Karelian (a.k.a. Livvi-Karelian) and Karelian proper (Viena) could be considered as different languages as well. Also Tver Karelians have been developing their own written language. My propose is that we should not mix any Ludian here. It has it's own Incubator and it should be also strongly supported. All Karelian dialects could be used here, but when the time is right (One or more languages got their written language developed enough) the different Karelian languages should be separeted. Until that we should work together as one and also help the Ludians as much as we can. 00:15, 9 March 2017 (UTC)[reply]

Arguments against[edit]

  • Strong - This proposal does not represent the Karelian language. It mixes multiple languages and as a result it is not represented by the krl ISO-639-3 code. GerardM 06:07, 8 June 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Are you opposing the grouping of the three dialects under a single Wikipedia edition or just its code assignment? Personally, I think the different varieties could well coexist under the same domain, since they're not that different. None of the potential contributors thus far seem to disagree with me either. Besides, "the Karelian language" is Karelian proper and Olonets Karelian (i.e. Livvi) combined. The speakers of both varieties consider themselves Karelians (not sure about the Ludians), and share a common history of planned language development. Basically they're just different literary standards based on slightly different spoken varieties. And the Ludians are so few in number that they would never be able to start up their own edition separate from other Karelian speakers (actually, at this moment even the test project does not have a single article in Ludian, but they're still welcome). As for the code, I agree that krl is not the optimal solution, since in ISO 639-3 there are distinct codes for Livvi (olo) and Ludian (lud). In ISO 639-2 the division in this detail did not exist and krl was glossed just "Karelian". Unfortunately we don't have any two-letter code in ISO 639-1 we could use... The Kurdish Wikipedia incorporates articles in two ISO 639-3 varieties (ckb and kmr) but they do have a convenient two-letter code available (ku), which goes for the Azeri Wikipedia, too (az for azb and azj). Similarly, the Alemannic Wikipedia (with an ad-hoc code als) has articles in gsw, swg and wae. Do you have an alternative solution? Malhonen 18:16, 10 June 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Both. The argument that other Wikipedias have it wrong is no valid argument. I also oppose the notion that we are talking about dialects. They have been recognised as languages. Thanks, GerardM 05:27, 11 June 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Ok, your point of view is as valid as mine. My point about the other existing editions was just that the mixing of several dialects or closely related languages (in the sense of writing some articles in one variety and some others in another variety, i.e. not writing any articles in a mixed variety) seems to be working pretty well for them. Interestingly, the Azeri Wikipedia was at first monolingually North Azeri. Then when somebody suggested creating a separate South Azeri edition, the adopted solution was to make bivarietal, which is how it's been working ever since. Besides, the borderline between a dialect and a language is often controversial, among professional linguists as well as native speakers. Most associations and civil societies promoting the Karelian language(s) I have encountered (e.g. Karjalan kielen seura), regard Karelian proper, Livvi and Ludian as dialects of one Karelian language. In reference to the different literary norms (which are all pretty recent and not very heavily standardized), the top linguistic authority in Finland, the Research Institute for the Languages of Finland, speaks of three literary languages, Northern Karelian proper (vienankarjala), Southern Karelian proper (tverinkarjala) and Livvi (aunuksenkarjala) in addition to Ludian (lyydi). In other contexts the institute still prefers the singular form "the Karelian language" (karjalan kieli) with three main dialects (päämurteet), Southern Karelian proper and Northern Karelian proper being subdialects of the dialect of Karelian proper. They have even finished publishing a six-volume Karelian dictionary in 2005 with entries from all the different varieties, not deeming it meaningful to have separate dictionaries for them. Malhonen 19:16, 13 June 2007 (UTC)[reply]
You may be of the opinion that your view is as valid. At issue is that the language committee has to agree that Karelian is indeed Karelian. Given your opinion it can not agree to that. GerardM 20:47, 13 June 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Note that GerardM speaks from personal opinion, and not on the behalf of the language subcommittee. He has a tendency to forget that. —{admin} Pathoschild 20:25:53, 14 June 2007 (UTC)
Well, you would not know any more as you are no longer part of the language committee. GerardM 15:16, 15 June 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Nor do I claim or imply that I am. —{admin} Pathoschild 23:11:24, 15 June 2007 (UTC)
If possible, can you give an example of the differences between the dialects? --Shanel 20:36, 14 June 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Differences between the Karelian varieties[edit]

Ok, let’s give it a try. I’m a trained linguist but not a native speaker of any form of Karelian (my first language is Finnish). So I will limit myself to sources I could already find published. Here’s an excerpt from an adaptation of the Christmas narrative in Livvi and Ludian, interspersed with a literal English translation and comments. I will not comment on most of the small phonetic changes now (such as tulimmo ~ tulimme or sanottih ~ sanuttih), just when there’s a morphological or a syntactical difference behind.

  • (Livvi) Sil aigua, konzu Viflejemas rodihes Iisus,
  • (Ludian) Sil aigal, konz Betlehemas rodiihe Sünd,
  • (English) At that time, when Jesus was born in Bethlehem,

1. ‘Sil aigua’ ~ ‘Sil aigal’ “at that time”; aigua and aigal are two different case forms of the same word for “time”, sil is the demonstrative “that”. Livvi behaves like Finnish in this special case in having different case forms for the head (partitive) and the modifier (adessive). In Ludian they agree with each other (both adessive). 2. The Ludian translators of this text have chosen to borrow the town name Bethlehem from Greek (or Finnish), while the Livvi translators have opted for the Russian form (Viflejem). I have seen another version in Livvi, where ‘Betlehem’ is used as well. 3. In Livvi, Jesus is called with the Russian form of the name (Iisus), while Ludian uses a special theological term likewise borrowed from Russian (Sünd, Сын – the Son).

  • (Livvi) päivännouzumualoispäi tuli Jerusalimah tiedäjii Iisussua eččimäh.
  • (Ludian) päivannouzun muaiš piäi Ierusaliman lidnah tuldih tiedajad eččimah hänt.
  • (English) (the) wise men from the sunrise countries came to (the city of) Jerusalem to look for Jesus (him).

1. Livvi has a compound word päivännouzumualoispäi “sunrise-countries-from”, while Ludian has three words “sunrise’s countries from”. 2. Livvi has strict vowel harmony, Ludian less so (päivän vs. päivan, eččimäh vs. eččimah, tiedäjii vs. tiedajad). 3. The Ludian version says “to the city of Jerusalem” (Ierusaliman lidnah) while Livvi omits “the city”. In Livvi, the corresponding phrase would be ‘Jerusaliman linnah’. 4. The Ludian translators use the definite form “the wise men came” (tiedajad tuldih), while Livvi uses the indefinite form “(some) wise men came” (tiedajii tuli). 5. The Livvi translation says “looking for Jesus”, while Ludian says “looking for him”. In Livvi the corresponding phrase would be ‘eččimäh händü’.

  • (Livvi) Hüö sanottih: Müö näimmö hänen tiähten, tulimmo hänele kumardamahes.
  • (Ludian) Hüö sanuttih: Müö nägimme hänen tiähten i tulimme hänele kumardumah.
  • (English) They said: We saw his star, (and) we came to bow down for him.

1. Consonant gradation is not as extensive in Ludian as it is in Livvi (but it does exist in both). Thus Ludian exhibits the medial “g” in ‘nägimme’ “we saw”, which doesn’t show up in Livvi ‘näimmö’. The detailed rules for consonant gradation is something that even all Finnish dialects don’t agree with each other.

  • (Livvi) Tiedäjät paistih Iisusah näh, se kui häi olis jevreilöin kuningas.
  • (Ludian) Tiedajad pagištih Sündüh nähte, kaku häin oliž Iudijan kuningaz.
  • (English) The wise men spoke about Jesus, that he was to be the king of the Hebrews (Judaea).

1. Difference in consonant gradation in ‘paistih’ ~ ‘pagištih’ ”they spoke”, as above. Ludian also deals differently with sibilants in the proximity of an /i/ sound (postalveolarization): ‘olis’ ~ ‘oliž’ “he was to be”, and with word-final voicing: ’tiedäjät’ ~ ’tiedajad’ “the wise men”, ‘kuningas’ ~ ‘kuningaz’ “king”. 2. The Livvi translators have used the phrase “the king of the Hebrews” ‘jevreilöin kuningas’, while Ludian has ‘the king of Judaea’ ’Iudijan kuningaz’.

  • (Livvi) Sen jälgeh tiedäjät lähtiettih tiähtie noudajen kohti Viflejemua.
  • (Ludian) Dälges sida tiedajad lähtih tiähted müöti Betlehemah.
  • (English) After that the wise men left, following the star to(wards) Bethlehem.

1. The prepositions for “after”, ‘jälgeh’ and ‘dälges’, are etymologically from the same root, Ludian having replaced the historical word-initial /j/ with /dʲ/ in some contexts. In addition, the Livvi form is in the allative and the Ludian form in the inessive, and the word order is reverse: Livvi “that after”, Ludian “after that”. The modifier “that” is in the genitive for Livvi (sen) and in the partitive for Ludian (sida). The exact distribution of these cases is somewhat unstable in other Finnic languages, too. 2. For “following the star”, Livvi uses a verbal phrase (tiähtie noudajen), while Ludian has a prepositional phrase (tiähted müöti – alongside the star). 3. For the direction, Livvi says “towards Bethlehem” with a prepositional phrase (kohti Viflejemua), while Ludian uses just the illative case ‘Betlehemah’ “to Bethlehem”.

  • (Livvi) Konzu hüö tuldih sinne, tiähti azetui karjusuojan piäle.
  • (Ludian) Ku hüö tuldih sinna, tiäht' azetui liävän piäle.
  • (English) When they came there, the star stopped above the stable.

1. Two different words for “the stable”, karjusuoju and liävä. The former is fully recognisable for a Finnish speaker, the latter dialectally (in the standard language the word's meaning has drifted to another direction).

  • (Livvi) Tiedäjäd mendih südämeh i löüttih Iisusan, kudai magai soimes.
  • (Ludian) Tiedajad astuttih südämeh i löüttih soimes magadajan Sündün.
  • (English) The wise men went (stepped) inside and found Jesus, who lay in the manger.

1. Two different words for “they stepped (inside)”, mendih and astuttih. Both of them are recognisable for a Finnish speaker, the former meaning “to go” and the latter meaning “to step” in Finnish. I’m not 100 % sure whether both words occur in both of these varieties or not. 2. The relative clause “Jesus, who lay in the manger” is formed up differently in the two translations. The Ludian version exhibits the traditional Uralic word order “the laying in the manger Jesus” while the Livvi translation uses the Indo-European (Germanic or Slavic) model “Jesus, who lay in the manger”. Both syntactic models do exist in all Baltic-Finnic languages, but the Indo-European model is gaining more and more ground all the time. Written Finnish, for instance, often prefers the traditional syntax, while spoken Finnish uses almost exclusively the Indo-Europeanised one.

That’s for Livvi and Ludian. I’ll see if I can find a good example on the differences of Livvi and Karelian proper somewhere else. And just for the record, from the linguistic point of view I think the different Karelian varieties could well coexist inside a single Wikipedia edition, but if the native contributors decide otherwise, I’m willing to accept that. At the moment, I’m simply helping them out, since they have stated their English skills are too meager to formulate the details. Malhonen 22:52, 4 July 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Despite my search, I haven't been able to find the exact same text anywhere, but I did manage to get my hands on a text in the two literary standards of Karelian proper and Livvi. So here is a text in Livvi, Southern Karelian proper (Tver) and then Northern Karelian proper (Viena). Please note that even the classification of the Ethnologue considers the latter two to be dialects of the same language.

  • (Livvi) Kolme vuottu Iisus käveli Juudies da Galileis.
  • (Tver) Kolme vuotta Iisus käveli Iudeissa da Galilejašša.
  • (Viena) Kolmen vuuvven aijan Isussa kulki Juudiessa ta Galilejassa.
  • (English) For three years Jesus walked around in Judea and Galilee.

1. Viena uses a postposition aijan ("during, for"), which requires the genitive case. Livvi and Tver express the same thing without a postposition, with the partitive case. 2. Viena uses the verb kulki "move around, walk around" while the other two say käveli "walk".

  • (Livvi) Händü kuundelemah kerävüttih suuret joukot rahvastu,
  • (Tver) Rahvašta keräüdü šuurie arteliloida händä kuundelemah,
  • (Viena) Rahvasta keräyty suuria joukkoja häntä kuuntelomah,
  • (English) Large crowds of people gathered to hear him,

1. Händü kuundelemah "To hear him" is expressed at the beginning of the sentence in Livvi but at the end in the other two. Baltic Finnic languages generally have a rather free sentence constituent order, so this is just a stylistic matter. 2. Livvi uses a definite expression kerävüttih suuret joukot "the large crowds gathered", while the other two say it in the indefinite "large crowds gathered". This explains most of the differences in the verb and the noun inflection. In addition Tver has a different word for "crowd", arteli. 3. The phonology of Tver Karelian is characterized by an opposite distribution of s/š and z/ž compared to Livvi and Ludian. Viena, on the other hand, has only one sibilant s and it lacks the voice distinction in plosives, too (t for t/d in other varieties, k for k/g and p for p/b). 4. The orthography of these sources write the IPA [y] sound as y in Viena and ü in all the rest. At least Tver Karelian may be written with y, too, as Red October (native speaker of Tver Karelian) below stated.

  • (Livvi) ku Iisusan sanois oli kummeksittavu vägi.
  • (Tver) žentän kun Iisusan paginoilla oli šuuri vägi.
  • (Viena) sentäh kun Isussan pakinoilla oli suuri väki.
  • (English) because Jesus' words had great power.

1. Tver and Viena use a longer version of the causal conjunction žentän kun "because", since kun by itself may have a temporal meaning, too. 2. Tver and Viena use the word pagina for "word", while Livvi has sanu. Both word roots exist in all of them, and they are used more or less interchangeably, as can be seen below. In addition, Livvi uses the inessive case ("in the words there was great power") while Tver and Viena have the adessive ("the words had great power"). 3. Livvi says kummeksittavu vägi "astonishing power", while the other two say šuuri vägi "great power".

  • (Livvi) Erähän kuulužan paginan Iisus pidi mäil.
  • (Tver) Ühen kuulovan paginan hiän pidi goralla.
  • (Viena) Erähän kuulusan pakinan Isussa piti vuaralla.
  • (English) Jesus deliverd one famous speech on a mount.

1. Livvi and Viena say erähän "a certain", while Tver says ühen "one". 2. Tver has hiän "he", while the other two repeat the name of Jesus. 3. For "mount" all of the versions use a different word (Livvi mägi, Tver gora, Viena vuara). Incidentally, all of them are different from what is used in this context in Finnish (vuori, different from the Viena cognate vaara). The Tver word is of Russian origin (гора), the two other words are Baltic Finnic, and they are found in Finnish, too.

  • (Livvi) Sentäh tädä paginua sanotah Mägipaginakse.
  • (Tver) Žentän šidä šanotah gorašanakši.
  • (Viena) Sentäh sitä kučutah vuarapakinaksi.
  • (English) This is why it's called the Sermon on the Mount.

1. Tver and Viena say šidä šanotah "it is called", while Livvi says tädä paginua sanotah "this speech is called". Livvi and Tver express "calling" with the verb for "saying", while Viena uses the specific verb for calling. Note that here Tver uses šana while the other two use pagina; above it was Livvi that used sanu in difference from the others.

  • (Livvi) Iisus algoi Mägipaginan nenga:
  • (Tver) Iisus näin alotti gorašanan:
  • (Viena) Näin Isussa alko vuarapakinan:
  • (English) This is how Jesus began the Sermon on the Mount:

1. Different word order in all versions.

  • (Livvi) Ozakkahat ollah omassah hengel köühät: heijän on taivahan valdukundu.
  • (Tver) Ožakkahat ollah hengissäh keühät: hiän oma on taivašvaldakunda.
  • (Viena) Osakkahat ollah henkessäh köyhät: heijän on taivahien valtakunta.
  • (English) Blessed are the poor in their spirit: theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

1. Livvi expresses the possession ("their") with a separate word omassah, while the others do the same with the ending -h. The same word oma is used in Tver in the second part of the sentence. 2. Tver has a compound word taivašvaldakunda, while the two others express the same idea with two words (Livvi "the kingdom of heaven", Viena "the kingdom of heavens").

  • (Livvi) Rahvahien opastajes Iisus saneli arbavuspaginoi.
  • (Tver) Opaštuas's'a inehmizie Iisus šaneli äijän arvautuššanoilla.
  • (Viena) Opastuassah ihmisie Isussa pakasi äijän peittosanoilla.
  • (English) Teaching the people, Jesus spoke (a lot in) parables.

1. Different word order in Livvi in the beginning verb clause. Livvi uses a different word for "people" rahvahie from the two others inehmizie/ihmisie. 2. Here the verb root sana/šana is used in both Livvi and Tver, while Viena uses the same root as in pagina. 3. Tver and Viena say "spoke a lot in parables", Livvi "spoke parables". The word for "parable" ("figure-word") is more or less the same in Livvi and Tver, but different from Viena. Here the part for "word" is pagina in Livvi but šana in Tver and Viena.

  • (Livvi) Niilöis häi saneli Jumalah da ilmanigäzeh elokseh näh.
  • (Tver) Näin hiän pagizi Jumalah näh da iinigäzeštä elännäštä.
  • (Viena) Näin hiän pakasi Jumalasta ta ijänkaikkisesta elämästä.
  • (English) That way he spoke about God and the everlasting life.

1. Livvi says niilöis "by (using) them" (the parables), the other two näin "this way". The English preposition "about" is expressed differently in all the versions: Livvi uses the allative plus the postposition näh, Tver uses the allative and näh in the first instance but the elative in the second, Viena uses the elative in both instances. 2. "Everlasting" and "life" are different words in all of them, but they are all formed of the same roots.

That's for samples for now. Please tell me if you need more detailed explanations or something else. Malhonen 19:10, 15 August 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Small addition: Livvi may be written with y instead of ü, too. Malhonen 19:57, 15 August 2007 (UTC)[reply]

General discussion[edit]

  • Question - How great is the difference between the different dialects? Is it comparable to the difference between American and British English, or is it more like the difference between Czech and Slovak?--Shanel 16:50, 15 May 2007 (UTC)[reply]
AFAIK, the different dialects are very much inter-intelligible, but all of them have (or have had) an independent literary tradition. For those of you who read Finnish, there's an interesting post-graduate thesis about the history of the literary Karelian languages in here. For others, see this paper in English. Livvi and Karelian proper are often considered as two equally "Karelian" linguistic varieties, while Ludian is a transitional dialect towards Veps (a closely related Baltic-Finnic language, as well). Malhonen 20:45, 26 May 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Please note that in neighbouring finland, there is a separate written tradition in savonian, tampere dialect and turku dialect and several others. This does not prevent any of those who practise writing in those dialects from writing in regular finnish grammar, it is a local dialect alongside the regular language, not one that creates a barrier between the dialect users and regular finnish language users. I think the situation may be somewhat analogous. Note that even english is sometimes written in dialect form more strongly idiosyncratic than the difference between british english and american english. As for the argument that karelian is not an independent language from finnish, I would counter with the explanation that the closest analogy that english speakers would understand is that karelian stands to finnish like scots stands to english. Roughly. -- Cimon Avaro 04:13, 27 June 2007 (UTC)[reply]
No. Finnish is clearly distinct both linguistically and socially. Karelians in Russia do not identify themselves as Finns or speakers of Finnish, even while there are other indigenous people in the same area (notably the Ingrian Finns) who do. Speakers of Livvi and Karelian proper, at least (not sure about the Ludians), are usually considered part of the same ethnic group with just two different literary traditions based on different dialects. They share some traits with each other, which are absent in standard Finnish, in phonology (word-final /h/, affricates, palatalization, and the extremely important voicing distinction in plosives and sibilants), orthography (marking IPA [y] with ü instead of Finnish y), and lexicon at the least (the important influence of Russian). Some of the Finnish case forms are lacking in the Karelian dialects, Livvi and Ludian not having the elative or the ablative, and Tver Karelian not having the allative. Malhonen 20:45, 26 May 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Karjalazet, midä tüö duumaičetto? Tahtozittogo tüö ühten Wikipedian karjalakse (karjalan kielen kaikil murdehil) libo kolme Wikipediua: ühten suvikarjalakse (tiverinkarjalakse), ühten livvikse i ühten lüüdikse? Mindäh? Jesli olet suvikarjalane, ellendätgo livvii? Jesli pagizet livvikse, ellendätgo suvikarjalua? Kirjuttakkua ven'akse (libo suomekse libo karjalakse), jesli etto malta paista anglien kielel. Passibo! Malhonen 22:57, 4 July 2007 (UTC)[reply]
    Translation: "Karelians, what do you think? Would you like to have a single Wikipedia in Karelian (using all varieties of Karelian) or three Wikipedias: one in Southern Karelian (Tver Karelian), one in Livvi, and one in Ludian? Why? If you are Southern Karelian, do you understand Livvi? If you speak Livvi, do you understand Southern Karelian? Please write in Russian (or Finnish or Karelian), if you don't know enough English. Thank you!"
Думаю, что википедия должна быть все-таки общей. Ведь и в русском тоже множество говоров и диалектов, невозможно под каждый заводить отдельный проект, главное что все друг друга понимают. Потом при желании можно будет выделить тверскую, ливвиковскую и людиковскую википедии. Кстати здесь Вы использовали ливвиковские диалектизмы и алфавит, я бы написал työ, karjalakše, кarjalažet da possibo. ;) --Red October 18:06, 8 August 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Translation: "I think that the Wikipedia should be after all common. There are lots of varieties and dialects in Russian, too, but it would be impossible to start up a separate project for all of them; the important thing is just that everyone understands each other. Then afterwards, if people want to, it would be possible to separate the Tver, Livvi and Ludian Wikipedias. By the way, here you [Malhonen] used some dialectal features and orthography belonging to Livvi; I would have written työ, karjalakše, karjalažet and possibo. ;)"
    • I beieve it must be the same, since each of the three projects might be too weak to develop independently, and the united project has good chances. The problem of graphics can be sorted out, like, foir instance, in Kashmiri or Tatar wikipedias.--Yaroslav Blanter 14:59, 30 October 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Here’s an update of what’s happened in the Karelian test edition thus far: Counting up contributors who have actually written some content, there have been two native speakers of Livvi, one native speaker of Tver, one native speaker of Viena and two non-native speakers using Livvi (with native Finnish and Võro). Personally, I haven’t written any content (remember I’m just helping out the native speakers in the bureaucratic stuff), but if I would, I would probably do it in Livvi, too, since that’s the variety I know the best. Besides, there’s an online Karelian – Russian – Finnish dictionary Sanakniigu (this is their nomenclature, not mine), where all of the Karelian content is Livvi. Malhonen 11:58, 8 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Relating to the language/dialect issue, here are some comments the contributors have left on the test edition’s main discussion page:
”Kirjuta sie Red October vain rohkiesti tverinkarjalaksi. Kyllä myö ymmärrämmä - mie ainaki (vaikka kirjutanki iče vienaksi)... Kontie 21:47, 29 October 2007 (UTC)[reply]
Translation: "Red October, you can go ahead and write in Tver Karelian. We understand you well – I do at least (even though I myself write in Viena)..."
(in response to a comment where the Tver Karelian Red October didn’t realize that a certain inflection was in fact correct Viena, even though it would have been a typo in Tver; Tver and Viena are both (sub)dialects of Karelian proper)
”Minus parembi,što müö kirjutetah nügözel uvvel karjalan kirjukielel, kuduatu ollah ruadamas mugai Ven'al eläjil kui Suomesgi eläjil karjalazil. Suomes Karjalan Kielen Seura. Nenga suammo ühtenäzen oman kielen, erothai ollah jo nügöi hüvin pikoit murdehien keskei. [...] masav
Translation: "I think it would be better, if we would write in the current new Karelian literary standard, which is being developed for all Karelians living in Russia as well as in Finland. In Finland the work is done by Karjalan Kielen Seura. This way we will get our own uniform language, since the differences between the dialects are already very small."
(masav is a native speaker of Livvi) Malhonen 11:58, 8 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]
  • Karjalan kielen seura (KKS, Karelian Language Society), which masav mentioned in the preceding comment, is a civil association with its main goals in reviving and developing the Karelian language, promoting the legal and educational status of and academic research on the Karelian language in Finland, as well as working as a contact link in issues relating to the Karelian language and culture, and keeping up a network between Karelians living in Russia and in Finland (source: KKS’s web page). I contacted their secretary and vice president, Mr. Pertti Lampi, by phone on 2007-12-07, and asked his stance on the language/dialect issue in general and specifically applied to Wikipedia. Here’s what he told me in summary form. I have added some comments of my own in square brackets.
  • The KKS promotes the usage of all the different Karelian varieties (Livvi, Tver, Viena, and Ludian), but considers them as different standardized literary forms of a single Karelian language. In practice, they refer to Karelian as a language with two literary forms, Olonets Karelian [Livvi] and Karelian proper – similarly to what you find in Norwegian [Bokmål and Nynorsk] – since Ludian is spoken by only two or three individuals in the whole area of Finland, and the difference between Tver and Viena is minute [they're both (sub)dialects of Karelian proper]. Within the Russian Federation, the Republic of Karelia recently adopted a new law which grants state support for public and private usage of the Karelian language, without differentiating between the varieties [in fact the law, dated 2004-03-17, grants such rights for three languages: Karelian, Veps, and Finnish; see the official text in Russian here]. A similar act is being promoted in Finland, which would grant the Karelian language the status of an officially recognized minority language. This would be in accordance with the report on the situation of minority languages in Finland in the European Charter for Regional and Minority Languages, which explicitly mentions Karelian as one of Finland’s minority languages [see the full text in English].
  • The KKS is having negotiations with the Finnish Ministry of Education in order to get Karelian language as a subject in Finnish schools (grades 1 to 9) for those pupils whose home language is Karelian. In practice this would mean having designated teachers of Karelian giving lessons in several schools of the same area and teaching the pupils primarily in whatever standardized form is closest to the home dialect of the pupils. In addition, the pupils would get acquainted with the other standardized form(s) as well. The system of one teacher giving lessons in several schools of the same area is already being implemented successfully in the teaching of the Russian Orthodox religion in Finnish schools. Eventually, the KKS is trying to start up a Karelian language high-school with teaching of all subjects conducted in Karelian. The University of Joensuu is already getting a chair of Karelian language [probably next year, see the report of Helsingin Sanomat; there’s a chair of Karelian and Veps languages and several lecturers of the Karelian language in the Petrozavodsk University, too].
  • In the Soviet times there used to be a uniform literary norm for Karelian combining features of all the different varieties [late 1930’s, see Esa Anttikoski’s licentiate thesis, chapters 8 and 9; the usage of Karelian was disencouraged already in 1940 in favour of Finnish, and since World War II broke out even the Finnish cultural activity diminished significantly]. Nowadays, a new uniform literary norm is being developed again, but it’s not yet complete. At the moment the norm can be seen in issues like a fixed, uniform orthography [the official decision issued on 2007-03-16 by the government of the Republic of Karelia can be found in Russian, in English, and in Finnish], and common lexical developments [i.e. if there’s a need for a new concept in Karelian, the recommendated new word or phrase is meant for use in all the Karelian varieties, not just one of them]. In Russia the work is done by the Republic’s Terminological and Orthographical Commission [1] working under the auspices of the Ministry of the Republic of Karelia on National Politics and Relations with Religious Associations [2] [in Finland the work is done by the KKS, as stated above; the commission is now even preparing the publishing of a Russian – Karelian dictionary]. The Tver Karelians are not bound by these decisions but they do apply them more or less consistently [Tver Oblast where most of the Tver Karelians live, is not part of the Republic of Karelia]. Despite the different literary forms, people who practice Karelian do understand all the literary varieties with ease. In Mr. Lampi’s mind a common Karelian Wikipedia would be feasible and preferable to several different editions. He suggested that a mention of the used variety on each article page would be sufficient [this was in fact his own idea, although such a system is already in place in the test edition]. In any case, the news about the Karelian test edition had been received with gladness in the KKS, and even the president of the society, archbishop Leo, expressed his delight. The society is now trying to get their members to participate in the project in all the ways they can. Malhonen 11:58, 8 December 2007 (UTC)[reply]


Why do not we all agree that this Wikipedia will be in Karelian proper (krl code). As far as I see there are no proposals on opening Wikipedias in Livvi, and if there is a motion to standartize written Karelian and Livvi, Livvi speakers could join later and contribute in Karelian now. For the graphics, I would suggest using both Latin and Cyrillic. I am afraid if no solution is found the proposal is not going to be accepted at all, and this can hardly benefit either Karelian or Livvy speakers.--Yaroslav Blanter 20:31, 13 February 2008 (UTC)[reply]

There is a standartized Karelian language alphabet:
A a B b Č č D d E e F f G g
H h I i J j K k L l M m N n
O o P p R r S s Š š Z z Ž ž
T t U u V v Y y Ä ä Ö ö '

the letter in bold is for the missing letter Cc. (Source: Government of Karelia (in Finnish, in Russian). --<Flrntalk> 19:37, 14 February 2008 (UTC)[reply]

It is completely correct that a combined project will not be accepted. GerardM 20:10, 4 March 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Note that GerardM's comment is not necessarily subcommittee consensus. —{admin} Pathoschild 20:12:11, 04 March 2008 (UTC)
Well, for any other position there will be no consensus. GerardM 23:16, 4 March 2008 (UTC)[reply]
But I believe now it is not a combined proposal anyway, and I withdrew my statement about the alphabet even before Gerard's comment.--Yaroslav Blanter 06:42, 5 March 2008 (UTC)[reply]
I've talked to the main proposer, contributor and native Karelian - Red October and he also agreed that there will be not a combined project but the Proper Karelian project only. He had already rewritten some dialect (Livvi) frases in the pages as he have prooved me. Sura 08:56, 5 March 2008 (UTC)[reply]


So now according to the updated status page the project is going to be considered eligible soon. Sura 23:14, 7 March 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Localisation update[edit]