On this page you will find the dialects of the areas and locations as two types of classification: traditional classification of Louis Bonaparte Loucien Koldo Zuazo current classification. By clicking on each of them, may find the description of the dialect and the towns belonging to it.
Historically this has been the most extended Basque dialogue, the most widely spoken and the most characteristic of Navarre. At the time of its widest historical extension it covered an area from the valleys immediately to the north of Pamplona to the most extended historical line of the Basque language in Navarre. That is to say, the line marked by Val de Lana, Valdega, La Solana, Oteiza, Villatuerta, Cirauqui, Mañeru, Puente La Reina, Valdizarbe, Artajona, Pueyo, Valdorba, Lerga, Ujué, Gallipienzo, Sada, Leache, Lumbier, Urraúl, Salazar, Roncal (all these cited towns being historically Basque speaking places). Westwards, Val de Lana and Améscoa, judging from their common place-names, undoubtedly belonged to another dialectical zone, more westerly and probably close to the extinct Basque once spoken in Álava, and the Basque spoken today in the Burunda area. Eastwardly, the valleys belonging to the Pyrennes (Salazar, Aezkoa, Roncal) come under a different dialect, but not the pre-Pyrenean area (Erro, Lintzoain, Arce) which did use this dialect. This was also the variety of Basque to be found in Pamplona.
At present speakers of this variant are to be found in the valleys of Erro and Esteribar (in total less than 500) but, except for some exceptional case, there is no natural transmission of the language now taking place.
Its historical importance cannot be underestimated. In this variety there exists written material which is linguistically very important; for example, what was probably the very first book printed in Basque; The Christian doctrine of Sancho de Elso, (there are no existing copies). El tratado de Oír Misa (The practice of attending mass) (1621) from Juan de Beriain who, as he himself puts it "is written in the form of speaking of Pamplona, the capitol of this kingdom, which is the most commonly spoken and is understood every where". And above all, the enormous pious homily from Joaquín de Lizarraga, who was parish priest in his hometown of Elcano (Egües), which is a key work in order to understand the varieties of Basque within the district of Pamplona and which are now extinct.
There also exists a large amount of written homilies without literary value but which are linguistically important, which come from all over the historical zone of this dialect.
Beyond the general characteristics of spoken Basque, the southern High Navarrese varies from the standard form in the following characteristics:
1- The main characteristic of the dialect, which reappears in some parts of Biscaya, is the lack of -n in the past form of the verbs: nue, ze, zio, etc.. This trait was common to the whole dialect, and even today it can be heard in Esteribar and Erro, but always in line with the forms with -n. In Eugi only -n exists:
But cf. also:
2- In the greater part of the zone -a- appears in the past form of the strong verbs (syntetical): nakien, nauken, zakien, zagoen, zabilen... etc, (standard neukan, zebilen... etc.):
3- The apheresis of the transitive auxiliary is very common in the present tense: tut, tuzu, etc, for ditut, dituzu, etc:
4- Instead of diet, diezu, zien, zaie, etc. it is very general to find forms in this zone of the type diotet (=diet), zioten (=zien), zaiote (=zaie) that is to say -ote- instead of -e-:
5-In the northern zone of this dialect (Mezkiritz), forms of the nor-nori-nork are in use of the Low Navarrese kind such as dakot, zakoten, etc, for diot, zioten etc:
Sometimes the forms in -ako- and in -io- would seem to have crossed :
6- The intransitive potentials en -ke: daike, zaiken etc. (standard daiteke, zitekeen) are characteristics of this dialogue (although they also exist at least in the Ultzama and Basaburua areas):
7- For the past of the Nor-Nori (standard zitzaion etc.), the root is -KI- instead of -TZA-: zekion/zakion instead of zitzaion:
8- The second person of the plural of the present tense of the nor-nork is in -zie (standard: -zue) as in the Ultzama and part of the Southern High Navarrese:
9- The form nitzen, without -n- (standard: nintzen) is a characteristic of all the Basque-speaking areas of Navarre (standard nintzen):
10- The future form of verbs finishing in -n (edan, egon, izan etc), is usually in -en. The pronunciation is habitually -ain:
However, historically there have been attestations of futures in this dialect en -nko (janko, joanko), for example for Puente la Reina.
11- The participles in -tu (galdetu, barkatu, etc) hacen el futuro en -tiko, make the future in -tiko, as in Aezkoan: galdetiko, barkatiko, and when linking to behar: galdeti ihar dut (=galdetu behar dut):
Pero cf. en Usetxi:
12- In this dialect the form in -rik of the verbal participle is in common use, something very rare and unusual in the Northern High Navarrese (except in the Barranca, where it is normal):
13- This dialect does not recognize the verbal nouns in -iten (emaiten, arraiten) which are characteristic of the Northern High Navarrese and the French-Basque dialects:
14- The contractions in the pherisfratic conjugation are much less frequent than in the Northern High Navarrese. But they do exist in the behar and nahi + auxiliary verb:
15- As well as those cited above, which are systemazied many other non-standard verbal flections can be heard. The version in standard clarifies in each case the equivalence. See the samples:
16- A recent morphological innovation, but a characteristic of many Basque dialects, is the analogical refection of the relative forms of flexions which finish in -t. The old form is -dan, -dala (dudan, dudala, zaidala, etc.), but the are now generally made duten, dutela, zaitela, etc., remade over dut, zait, etc.:
However, the old forms may still be heard, even from the same speaker that will also use the other form:
Cf. previous example.
17- The confusion between the verbal paradigms Nor-nork and nor-nori-nork is total (in favor of the second):
18- In all this zone, unlike the Northern High Navarrese, the -ak is distinguished from the -ek in plural:
However, confusing cases are very frequent, in part due to linguistic erosion and in part due to the influence of the Northern High Navarrese:
19- The instrumental is -s (standard -z):
Pero es frecuente la vacilación con -z:
20- The normal contraction of the genitive singular is -ain:
21- With numbers it is very common to find the forms with -tan: hirutan hogei, lautan hogei (=hirurogei, laurogei), although the latter is also heard (from reasons of prestige of the standard and the guipuzcoan); the oriental forms bortz and hameka are also used:
22- The nondik case in the indefinite and in plural is formed by -tarik, just like in the French-Basque dialects:
23- It is common to find -arendako for -arentzat.
24-In words such as artzain, arrain, haurtzain, etc. in all the dialect the forms in -ai predominate (as they do in Northern High Navarrese): artzai, arrai, haurtzai etc:
25- It is almost generalized to keep the final Spanish -on in the loan-words (standard -oi): pantalona, perdigona, kamiona, jipona, botona, xabona.
However, in the older loan-words, or even in some patrimonial word such as saroi ┤sheepfold┤, the Southern High Navarrese shows its own characteristic result: -io. Compare topography words such as the Pamplona Sario (<saroi). There are no examples in the corpus. .
26- In one area of the dialect (Egüés), the demonstratives show a g- initial, just as in the Salazarese or the Aezkoan (Roncalese k-): gau, gori, gor, etc. However, in the towns where it is still spoken today the forms are the standard hau, hori etc...:
27- The automatic palatalization is voiced with less force than in the Northern High Navarrese. In the historical zone of the dialect it is unknown in Elcano, Puente La Reina and Arce. On the other hand, it is very strong in Olza, Oláibar, Goñi, Juslapeña and Iza.
Within the present boundary of the dialect (Esteribar and Erro) -n- is palatalized after the i semi-vowel: ezpaña, gaña, etc. but not after the i vowel: irine, mutila etc.:
But after a semi-vowel:
Although at times exceptions to this rule may be heard:
Neither the t nor the l receive palatization after i, except in Urritzola:
28- Forms such as buruba, mendiya, with a transition sound are unknown while they do exist in areas of the Northern High Navarrese.
29- In Mezkiritz and Usetxi forms of the Aezkoan type with a loss of the -i- between vowels can sporadically be heard. This is common in the demonstratives:
It is also given in other forms:
But a lot of times in a hesitating form:
But cf. in the same town:
It does not seem to be used in Eugi.
30- In the declination, ea (etxea) and oa (astoa) often sound ia and ua (especially in the first case; ua for oa is rarer:
But the tendency is quite vacillating:
31- These hiatus tend to be pronounced (although not always nor in all parts) monosyllabic (like a diphthong), perhaps as a consequence of the strong intense accent that is used in part of this dialect:
bat Beltrania, nere etxia Juankonia, bertzia Juantenia
32- The vocal harmony is made in the totality of the dialect (dirua>dirue, ogia>ogie). Historically it was only absent in Arce and Egüés. As distinct from the Northern High Navarrese it appears both between morphemes (ogie) as well as in the interior of the morpheme: (uketu, ugeri, iketza etc. It is less intense in Mezkiritz:
33- Traces can be seen of an old vacillation r/d (although nowadays it is not made). Especially in the morpheme of the dative case -da- (didan, zidan, etc):
34- It is quite common ( and almost exclusive to the High Navarrese speakers) for the verbs to lose the first vowel (aphaeresis): baki (=ebaki), karri, etc. Sometimes it also occurs with nouns: mazteki (=emazteki):
As a consequence of this it is common to find the distinctionman (=eman)/eman (=eraman):
35- A vowel is also sometimes lost within the interior of the word (syncope) but this is a sporadic phenomenon, much rarer than in Northern High Navarrese (link Northern High Navarrese 33):
36- In words like joan, jarri, jende, etc. the initial sound in this dialect resounds as -y among those dialects which are still in use, except in Urritzola where it is j-:
But the more recent loan-words and the typical Navarrese expressive word ja (=nothing, something) is sounded everywhere with a jay (j):
And sometimes in traditional terminations j can be heard because of the influence of other dialects and of the standard form:
Historically, in this area the pronunciation x- was very common and which, according to data from Irigaray, reached as far as Uharte-Arakil. In Arce both the y- and x- concurred. In Oláibar and Juslapeña only y- was sounded. The x- in Egúés and Olza. There is also evidence in some areas of a pronunciation like the Spanish jay, such as Puente La Reina.
37- The lexicon of the Southern High Navarrese is not especially characteristic. Few words or variants of the corpus are unique to this dialect or even to the Navarrese Basque. Bahikorle (<bahi korrale) ┤a pen of confiscated herd┤ frantsa ┤French┤, the forms of iago and iagoen for gehiago and gehien, ja (ere) ┤nothing, something┤ (also in Northern High Navarrese); aundiz ┤a lot┤ (also in Northern High Navarrese); ortzi ┤to bury┤; puskan, puskaz, with comparatives (┤a lot more┤); eraiki ┤to sow┤lemixi ┤first┤, jende as a countable noun (┤person┤); igo ┤to grind┤.
38- If the Navarrese Basque in general and especially this dialect shows a peculiar physiognomy, this is due to the western character (near the French dialects) of the lexicon and variants which are used there: afera ┤matter┤, iduri izan ┤to seem┤, antzin (and altzin), gibel ┤in front of /behind┤, bertze ┤another┤, antzindari ┤authority┤/boss┤, artio ┤until┤, larrazken ┤autumn┤, orai ┤now┤, erran ┤to say┤, pean, petik, peko (as an independent element: peko etxea etc..) emazteki ┤woman┤, hertsi ┤to close┤, igorri ┤ to send┤, iratzarri ┤to wake up┤.
39- The Southern High Navarrese, like all spoken Basque, contains many loan-words of various types:
Moreover, it keeps many loan-words and old tracings which have been eliminated in the written form through a sense of purity: pagatu, ┤to pay┤, akabatu ┤to finish┤ eskribitu ┤to write┤, gainean ┤concerning┤, etc...
And moreover it also contains many recent loan-words:
40- It is common to hear forms of the relative (explicative) with the prefix bait-.
41- In this dialect the suffix -larik substitutes -nean in all its functions:
42- The dependent completives of uste can appear -n, at the least in Mezkiritz (this use is also known in the Baztan and Cinco Villas):
43- The causal conjunction zer(en)gatik is common in the whole zone, at times alone and at times combined with the suffix -n in the verbal form:
44- The comparatives can either be formed with the suffix -ago or by adding to this --ko:-agokoa (although it is not wholly adnominal).
45- A very eastern characteristic of these dialects is the use of -raino with a temporary value, unknown in the western dialects:
46- The use of the periphrasis -ten ahal for the potentials is usual, even in negative sentences:
47- In the Southern High Navarrese free uses of the indefinite may be heard (mugababe) which are rare in the other peninsular dialects:
At present it is the most extensively spoken dialect in Navarre, although historically the Southern High Navarrese was the most extended.
Some 35,000 people speak this dialect in Navarra, in the localities of Arakil, Barranca (from Arbizu onwards), Larraun, Araitz, Cinco Villas, Imotz, Basaburua, Arano-Goizueta, Leitzaran, Ultzama, Anue, Malerreka, Bertizarana. Outside the province of Navarre this dialect is also spoken in Irun, Oiartzun and Hondarrabia.
In the greater part of its territory (except in Arakil, and at a low intensity in Ultzama) a natural transmission of this language continues to take place to a greater or lesser degree.
The dialect is not wholly homogeneous, some forms of the language are distinct from other areas. Thus, for example, the Barranca, quite a peculiar variety, is close to the Guipuzcoan of Navarre.
Its written form has been practically null, save for some poor quality religious writings. Some wills also exist from earlier ages, but their number cannot be compared with other dialects. Not even with the neighboring Southern High Navarrese. Meanwhile, its slight differences from the Guipuzcoan dialect has prompted the speakers to use this variety, at least on those more formal occasions (e.g. at public poetry recitations).
Beyond the common traits of spoken Basque the Northern High Navarrese is distinct from the standard form in the following characteristics
Morphology (verbal, nominal)/Phonetics/Lexicon/Syntax
1-In most part of this zone , -a appears in the past tense of the strong verbs (synthetical): nakien, nauken, zakien, zagoen, zabilen... etc, (standard neukan, zebilen... etc.):
However, the -e also exists within some areas of the dialect: in Leitza, Arano and Larraun (here it alternates with -a-):
Also in the Barranca, forms such as zoken presuppose za-:
2-The nitzen form, without -n (standard nintzen) is a characteristic of the all the Navarrese - Basque speaking dialects:
3-In the forms of the Nor-Nori- Nork, the pluralizing is -it-, like in the Nor-Nork (ditio..etc). This is a trait which is exclusive to this dialect (not found in any other, except for the Baztanese):
However, in certain areas forms with -zki- appear, such as in Arano (in Leitza, of the dazkit type):
4-In a part of the zone the use of due etc., for dute etc. At least in the area comprising Leitzaran, Barranca, Araitz, Larraun (here dui) and a part of Basaburua Menor:
5-Duzie (Larraun duzi) for duzue can be heard around the Ultzama and Larraun:
6-In verbs which finish in -n (edan, egon, izan etc), the future form is generally in -en:
In many towns this final -anen, -onen is pronounced -ain, -oin:
The Guipuzcoan form -ngo is heard rarely in Larraun, Areso, Arano and Araitz.
7-Instead of diet, diezu, zien, zaie, etc. forms of the type diotet (=diet), zioten (=zien), zaiote (=zaie) are quite general in this zone, that is to say -ote instead of -e-:
In the areas where due(=dute) is used, they also say dioe (Leitza dioa) (=die), that is to say, -oe- (-oa-) for -e-:
Etxe guzie nastu in zioan
8-In certain verbs with -n in almost all areas of this dialect the verbal noun is formed in -iten (generally pronounced -tten), like the French-Basque speakers: izatten, ematten, egotten, eramatten:
However, in Larraun, Araitz, Barranca and Ultzama we have -ten, and sporadically also in other parts, from the prestige of the standard form:
9-For the past form of the Nor-Nori (zitzaion etc.) the root is -KI instead of -TZA in a part of the zone (Ultzama, Imotz and The Barranca) so zekion/zakion instead of zitzaion. In the Barranca this root is also used in the present tense: dakio etc. for zaio etc.:
10-The verbal flexions, within their variety, share one main characteristic in general: the hiatus (zegoen, zuen, nekien, genuen, duela, dagoela... etc), are reduced to their first vowel (zegon, zun, nun, nekin, genun, dula, dagola... etc). This does not happen in the Barranca and Ultzama:
11- As well as the earlier traits, which are systemized, it should be pointed out that in this dialect many non-standard verbal flexions may be heard. The version in unified Basque clarifies the equivalence in each case:
12- In the periphrastic conjugation all types of verbal contractions may be heard, although the corpus is not sufficient to systematize and define the zones. The contractions of behar + transitive auxiliary are very characteristic in this dialect.
13-There is a general tendency (non-distinctive) in the Navarre language to confuse the verbal paradigms nor-nork and nor nori-nork (generally in favor of the second). What is distinctive (it establishes an isogloss ) is the degree to which the tendency has been completed: total confusion characterizes the Southern High Navarrese. But in other speech-areas it also occurs (Ultzama) and as a tendency it is widespread: Ituren, Barranca:
However, the difference is not lost everywhere:
14- However, the difference is not lost everywhere:
Inversely, in some areas (at least in the Ultzama), the forms connected in -da- have reproduced a free analogical form in -da: zaida, zaira, dida, (and by way of harmonious vocalization zaide, zaire, etc. (although never with the forms such as dut, dakit, etc.)
15- The casual suffix -lako has the variant of lako(t)z (and -lakos), as in the continental dialects:
16- All over this zone the -ak is not distinguished from -ek in plural:
17-The instrumental is -es over a large part of the zone (standard Basque: -z) just like in the Southern High Navarrese. Especially in the Barranca, where it is unique, but in other spoken areas (Basaburua, Ultzama, Larraun, Imotz), here in concurrence with -z:
18-The phonetic augmentatives in z- are typical of the Navarrese dialects: zuleta, zapela, etc. They also exist in other dialects, but here they are the normal:
19-In the numbers the forms with -tan are very common: hirutan hogei, lautan hogei (=hirurogei, laurogei), Although, these last ones can also be heard (for reasons of prestige of the Guipuzcoan and the standard form):
20-The nondik case in the indefinite and the plural forms is made in -tarik in the Ultzama, just as in the Southern High Navarrese.
21-In the Ultzama it is very common to use -arendako for -arentzat:
22-In words such as artzain, arrain, haurtzain, etc, in all the dialect the forms in -ai predominate: artzai, arrai, haurtzai etc:
23-It is quite general to keep the final Spanish -ón in the loan words (in standard Basque -oi): pantalona, perdigona, kamiona, jipona, botona, xabona. (although this is not the case with the older loan words: arratoi is general):
A peculiarity of Leitza is the adaptation of -obe as this termination:
24-In the demonstratives there exist many non-standard forms. It is particularly common to find the form harr- of the third person singular demonstrative:
Es normalísimo Hok por hauek, declinado hoketan, hoketara, etc.
In Etxalar hek exists for haiek:
25-The automatic palatalization after -i is general and stronger than in other zones (it affects, for example, the auxiliary verb: ttuzu, ttugu etc). This does not happen in Etxalar, where there is no palatalization:
26-On the western side of this dialect (Leitza, Goizueta, Malerreka, Bertizarana, Basaburua, Araitz, Larraun, Imotz) there is a tendency to open, above all, the u, but also the i: dot, dozo, dakizo, are typical flexions from Leitza, for example. Also many speakers pronounce -to in the participles in -tu (galdeto, harrapato):
Much less common is the e for i, although it does occur, especially in Larraun and in a part of Basaburua Menor: nek (nik), -tek (tik), -eken (-ekin), ekarre, eose (egosi) etc.:
27-In the declination between the i and the article, a transition sound is built up as happens in a large part of Guipuzcoa: mendiya, ttikiya, herriya. This phenomenon occurs in Arano (but not in Goizueta), Cinco Villas, the north of Malerreka and the Barranca:
eta orduan die batzuk han