Category Archives: Euskara

Learning Euskara: Some Online Resources

My friend Benoit Etcheverry Macazaga posted on his Facebook page a link to Mintza Lasai, a citizen effort that started in November 2011 with the goal of revitalizing Basque in BAB: Bayonne-Anglet-Biarritz. In particular, they have a few resources on Euskara including a practical dictionary in Euskara, French, Spanish, and English as well as a […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Basque First Names

I’ve delved into my genealogy a bit, scouring the priests’ books that document births, deaths, and marriages in each little town. Going back centuries, the names are all too familiar: Pedro, Jose, Domingo, Juan for the men; Josefa, Maria, Manuela, Magdalena for the women. Once in a while, there will be a Bartolome, or an […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Resurrección María de Azkue

Despite the ancient origins of the language, it is only recently that Euskara, or Basque, has received the academic and literary attention that other languages have enjoyed for a long time. Much of what led to the current growth and strength that the language enjoys today began over a century ago with, for example, the […]

Learning Euskara Remotely

I spent the 1991-92 school year in Donostia, with the goal of learning Euskara. I took a semester of intense Euskara classes, essentially completing two years of coursework in that one semester. My teacher, Nekane, was ever-so patient with all of my questions, my delving into the minutia of why this word went there, questions […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Basque Ideophones

This week, a little bit of whimsy. Ideophones (also known as onomatopoeias) are words whose sound invokes the idea of the meaning of the word. Some examples in English are bang, boom, and splish-splash (and yes, I already took a bath). These are often used in comics as their sound conveys action, like Batman’s pow! […]

“I like fried eggs!” — Some Basque Weirdness in a Spanish Comic

Guillermo Zubiaga sent me this strange and funny bit from Los Grandes Enigmas de Martin Mystere, Investigador de lo Imposible, a Spanish translation of an Italian comic published in 1982. In the comic, the hero encounters an unknown tribe in Belize. I don’t know anything about the plot, but there are a few scenes in […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Ikastolas, the Basque Schools

Basque is an ancient language, predating the Indo-European languages of Europe that surround it. Despite this long history, it is only recently that Basque has become a literary language, with a healthy, if small, corpus of written works. Perhaps even more surprising is that the formal teaching of subjects in the Basque language is not […]