Siberian language

English translation - Nat Krause, http://store.barcodesforless.com

The Siberian language or Sibirskoj (сибирской говор) is standardised form of certain Northern Russian dialects. It was developed by the Volgota cultural group in 2005.

Historical survey

Historically, there were various East Slavic dialects spoken in the area north of Kiev and east of Polotsk which were distinct from Ukrainian and Belorussian, but also distinct from the Moscovite dialects that later became standard Russian. A distinct Novgorod dialect appeared in 11th or 12th century and was used in writing for several hundred years. The evolution of literary languages based on those dialects, however, was, as in other places, conditioned by the local political situation, and Novgorod was part of the Russian empire from the 15th century onward. When Mikhail Lomonosov layed the groundwork for the standardised literary form of Russian, it was influenced by only a few the empire's old Slavic dialects; in addition, it borrowed numerous words from Old Church Slavonic and other European languages. Thus, it is possible to construct independent literary languages based on dialects spoken in other places.

The Old Siberian dialect, originating from northern Russian and Cossack dialects, was in use by the end of 17th century in parts of Siberia. Unlike in Ukraine and Belarus, the people of Russian Siberia did not develop a literary language during the course of the 19th century. Throughout the 20th century the use of Siberian dialects declined dramatically because of the establishment of the Russian language as the official national language and because of the depopulation of Siberian peasantry which was basis of the dialects. However, in the middle of the 20th century, several linguistic research attempts dealing with the Siberian dialects were started.

In 1873, P. A. Rovinski's Remarks on the Siberian Dialect and a Dictionary of the Same was published by the Siberian News Department of the Russian Newspaper Society. Regarding the Old Siberian dialect, Rovinski wrote: "The Eastern Siberian dialect has a particular phonetic system and many distinct grammatical forms. The dictionary contains three thousand local words unknown in the general Russian language". The modern project of collecting grammatical rules to form the standard this language was undertaken by Yaroslav Zolotaryov, while the other members of the Volgota cultural group assisted in collecting vocabulary from the various rural areas where the dialects in question are spoken.

Phonology

Siberian phonetics has the norms of a north Slavic dialect: the "g" (Г) is pronounced as a stop ([ɡ]), even though this corresponds to the Ukrainian and Belarussian fricative [ɣ] in many words In Siberian, the letter shcha (Щ) is unused, and native speakers of the Siberian dialects sometimes have difficulty pronouncing the sound it represents, [ɕː], in Russian. In Siberian, the letters O (O) and Ye (E) are always pronounced fully as [o] and [jɛ], respectively, whereas, in Russian they are generally pronounced as reduced vowels when they occur in unstressed syllables.Siberian often simplifies consonants clusters into simpler sounds, particularly at the end of words; for example, Russian starost corresponds to Siberian staros and Belarussian voblast corresponds to Siberian voblas.

Siberian also lacks the letters Yo (Ё) and E Oborotnoye (Э), which were added to Russian in the 18th century.

Grammar

The grammar of Siberian is similar to that of Russian. The notable distinctive aspect Siberian grammar concerns conjugation. In Siberian, it is typical for an ending which includes the sound [j] between two vowels to be simplified into one vowel without [j]. Examples of this are Russian znayet, corresponding to Siberian znat, and Russian krasnaya, corresponding to Siberian krasna.