.mw-parser-output .hidden-begin{box-sizing:border-box;width:100%;padding:5px;border:none;font-size:95%}.mw-parser-output .hidden-title{font-weight:bold;line-height:1.6;text-align:left}.mw-parser-output .hidden-content{text-align:left}This article may be expanded with text translated from the corresponding article in Polish. (December 2019) Click [show] for important translation instructions. View a machine-translated version of the Polish article. Machine translation, like DeepL or Google Translate, is a useful starting point for translations, but translators must revise errors as necessary and confirm that the translation is accurate, rather than simply copy-pasting machine-translated text into the English Wikipedia. Consider adding a topic to this template: there are already 1,401 articles in the main category, and specifying|topic= will aid in categorization. Do not translate text that appears unreliable or low-quality. If possible, verify the text with references provided in the foreign-language article. You must provide copyright attribution in the edit summary accompanying your translation by providing an interlanguage link to the source of your translation. A model attribution edit summary is Content in this edit is translated from the existing Polish Wikipedia article at [[:pl:Puryzm (językoznawstwo)]]; see its history for attribution. You should also add the template ((Translated|pl|Puryzm (językoznawstwo))) to the talk page. For more guidance, see Wikipedia:Translation.
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The Académie Française in France is charged with maintaining the linguistic purism of the French language. This is the first page of the 6th edition of their dictionary (1835)
The Académie Française in France is charged with maintaining the linguistic purism of the French language. This is the first page of the 6th edition of their dictionary (1835)

Linguistic purism or linguistic protectionism is the prescriptive[1] practice of defining or recognizing one variety of a language as being purer or of intrinsically higher quality than other varieties. Linguistic purism was institutionalized through language academies (of which the 1572 Accademia della Crusca set a model example in Europe), and their decisions often have the force of law.[2]

The perceived or actual decline identified by the purists may take the form of a change of vocabulary, syncretism of grammatical elements, or loanwords.[citation needed] The unwanted similarity is often with a neighboring language whose speakers are culturally or politically dominant.[citation needed] The ideal may invoke logic, clarity, or the grammar of classic languages. It is often presented as a conservative measure, as a protection of a language from the encroachment of other languages or of the conservation of the national Volksgeist, but is often innovative in defining a new standard. It is sometimes part of governmental language policy which is enforced in various ways.

The practice opposite of purism, when borrowed words displace native ones, also exists. For example, in English the native word 'bookstaff' (German: Buchstabe) was replaced by the Latin word letter.

Cognate languages

Main article: Abstand and ausbau languages

In one common case, two closely related languages or language varieties are in direct competition, one weaker, the other stronger. Speakers of the stronger language may characterize the weaker language as a "dialect" of the strong language, with the implication that it has no independent existence. In response, defenders of the other language will go to great lengths to prove that their language is equally autonomous.

In this context, Yiddish and Dutch have in the past sometimes been considered dialects of German. In the case of Low German, spoken in eastern Netherlands and northern Germany, the debate is still current, as it could be considered a dialect of Dutch or German or a language of its own. An example of a related language that has only recently attained the status of an official national language is Luxembourgish. Since linguistic science offers no scholarly definition of a dialect, and linguists regard the distinction with scepticism – see A language is a dialect with an army and navy – the argument is really about subjective questions of identity politics, and at times it can invoke extreme emotions from the participants.

Writing systems

Closely related languages often tend to mix. One way of preventing this is to use different writing systems or different spelling systems.

Examples of this include:


Various scholars have devised classifications of purism. These classifications take different criteria as their starting point and are therefore partly independent of each other.

Based on the approach

One taxonomy of puristic orientations is due to George Thomas:[3]

Based on the goals

Based on the intensity

Based on linguistic level

Other forms

By language

See also


  1. ^ Veisbergs, Andrejs (2010). "Development of the Latvian Language, Purism and Prescriptivism". Linguistic Studies in Latvia (PDF). Vol. 18. University of Latvia. p. 15.
  2. ^ Thomas (1991), p. 108
  3. ^ Thomas, pp. 75–83
  4. ^ "CĂ"MO CREE QUE SE ESCRIBE: BLUE JEAN O BLUYĂ?N – Archivo Digital de Noticias de Colombia y el Mundo desde 1.990". eltiempo.com. 20 August 1996. Retrieved 2015-08-11.
  5. ^ "bluyín". Archived from the original on November 29, 2009. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  6. ^ [1][dead link]
  7. ^ "champú". Archived from the original on 22 May 2010. Retrieved 12 April 2019.
  8. ^ Beka Melayu Lumpuk Ujar Dalam Pemerintahan, The Patriots (Malay article)