Press (1995)

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  • Press, Ian. 1995. 'Barriers to the standardization of the Breton language', Transactions of the Philological Society 93: 1, 51-93.

 The decline of many European languages is related to their marginalization by recent sociopolitical developments: modernization, centralization, industrialization; but in the case of Celtic Breton it is also linked to long-standing isolation. The concepts of codification and standardization are separable. Breton, in spite of a fine literature, has, through lack of prestige and of public presence, dialectal fragmentation, the ‘mentalities forged by history’ (Hagège 1987:198), and dissension among speakers, never achieved real standardization. It is feared that current support may be too late, though the untiring efforts being made by activists give cause for hope.


Hagège, Claude. 1987. Le français et les siècles, Paris: éditions Odile Jacob.