49th International Philological Conference (IPC 2020) in Homage to Professor Ludmila Verbitskaya (1936-2019)

Proverbs in the Handbooks of Linguistics by Croatian Linguists in the 18th and 19th Century

Irena Krumes
Boston College

Ключевые слова, аннотация

Proverbs, history of Croatian language, handbooks on linguistics, Croatian  language of the 18th and 19th century.


The paper explores the linguistic role of proverbs in bilingual dictionaries and grammar books written in Croatian, German or Latin during the 18th and 19th century. Croatian handbooks of Linguistics throughout history were monolingual or bilingual, that mean that the one word is interpreted in Croatian, Latin, Italian or German, or bilingual with the Croatian component usually used to teach a foreign language in Croatia. Eg. German, Italian, and especially Latin. That means that they were written in Latin, Italian, German and parallel to Croatian (Illyrian). It is well known that paremiological contents were used during the 18th century in major Croatian dictionaries in order to affirm lexemes and their role was mostly explicatory, they served as determiners of certain entries. But it has been confirmed that such contents continue to appear in the grammar books at the end of the 18th century (e.g. BlažTadijanović, Svašta pomalo, 1761), as well as those from the entire 19th century (Šime Starčević, Nova ričoslovnica ilirička, 1812, Ignac Alojzije Brlić, Grammatik der illirichen Sprache, 1833, A. W. Tkalčević, Skladnja ilirskoga jezika, 1859). Handbooks on linguistics introduce proverbial texts for several reasons, as illustrative examples of theoretical concepts and as the material for linguistic and stylistic analysis. Some authors use proverbs as examples for conversational language acquisition. Later (by the end of the 19th century) proverbs enter all of the most influential Croatian grammar books as objects of grammar analysis and stylistic analysis. Their role in the history of Croatian language is very significant as they indicate the process of standardisation of vernacular language.