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October 24, 2018 7:34 PM   Subscribe

"When the Jews left Spain, they took their language with them. Over the last 500 years, the language has maintained the structure of medieval Spanish and sounds more similar to some forms of Latin American Spanish than European Spanish." -- A brief look at Ladino in Bosnia and Herzegovina [BBC Travel]
posted by Freelance Demiurge (5 comments total) 29 users marked this as a favorite
Bosnian Ladino sounds more like New Mexico Spanish. Also, one little - known but important fact is that Bosnian Jews had a charity organization called ‘La Benevolencia’ which got food to people in Sarajevo. The infamous ‘Breadline Massacre’ which got people in the US pushing to intervene was perpetrated on the place where La Benevolencia distributed bread and sausages to anyone who needed it.
A lot of the music and art in Bosnia was from Jews and yet Jews are not one of the ‘Constituent Peoples’ of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The same is true for Roma people. This is how the Dayton Accord was set up and it’s not something which can easily be changed. Basically it’s a lack of recognition which makes it impossible for a Jew or a Roma person to be in the Presidency. I remember reading a lot about this when I lived in Sarajevo but haven’t seen anything since.
posted by Katjusa Roquette at 5:05 AM on October 25, 2018 [4 favorites]

Thanks for posting this. I know a couple of Ladino speakers from South America, but didn't realize there were still native speakers of it in Europe. Very cool!
posted by Mchelly at 7:02 AM on October 25, 2018

Thank you for sharing this.
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 9:10 AM on October 25, 2018

Pa Ardship was very interested in Ladino language and culture (he taught medieval Spanish poetry at SFSU). In 1992 we had the pleasure and privilege of attending a special concert at Temple Emmanuel-El marking the 500th anniversary of the expulsion. Flory Jagoda, born in Sarajevo but living in the U.S. since WWII, lead the audience in some old Ladino favorites. She's definitely worth a listen.
posted by The Ardship of Cambry at 9:28 AM on October 25, 2018

I'm told I had Ladino-speaking great-grandparents on my mom's mom's side. They were in Romania by the time they emigrated here but I'm not sure where the family was over time. Originally it was in Spain, then Morocco briefly, then Turkey, then the Balkans.
posted by snuffleupagus at 3:07 PM on October 25, 2018

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