Pierre Bec

Pierre Bec (in Occitan Pèire Bèc 11 December 1921 – 30 June 2014)[1] was a French Occitan language poet and linguist. Born in Paris, he spent his childhood in Comminges, where he learnt Occitan. He was deported to Germany between 1943 and 1945. After returning, he studied in Paris, where he graduated in 1959. He was one of the founders of the Institut d'Estudis Occitans (Institute for Occitan Studies, IEO), and its president as well from 1962 to 1980.


Bec was titular professor at Poitiers university and assistant director of the Centre d'Études Supérieures de Civilisation Médiévale (Centre for high studies in medieval civilisation).[2] He is considered one of the most important specialists in Occitan dialectology and in mediaeval Occitan literature. His activity is distributed among Occitanist politics, philological research and literary creation. He collaborated with publications like Cahiers de Civilisation Médiévale, Revue de Linguistique Romane, Estudis Romànics, Oc.

In 1982 he took part in the Linguistic Normalisation commission for Aranese, with Jacme Taupiac and Miquèu Grosclaude: they established some linguistics norms, officialised in 1983, following IEO's indications for Gascon.

Bec died in Poitiers on 30 June 2014 at the age of 92.[3]

Importance for Gallo-Cisalpine language(s)

As a linguist, Pierre Bec stated, within his Manuel pratique de Philologie romane (2nd volume, p. 316) that some kind of diachronical unity holds between Rhaeto-Romance languages (i.e. Romansh, Friulian and Ladin) and Northern Italian or Cisalpine ones (Western Lombard, Eastern Lombard, Piedmontese, Venetan, Emiliano-Romagnolo and Ligurian). This issue has been further investigated by the Australian linguist Geoffrey Hull.




See also


  1. "Mor l'occitanista Pèire Bèc". www20.gencat.cat. Retrieved 28 May 2015.
  2. Covell, Roger (October 20, 2001). "Poets' justice; CD Reviews". Sydney Morning Herald.
  3. Mor l'occitanista Pèire Bèc
  4. Smith, Alex Duval (July 26, 1991). "Europe: The tongue of the troubadours lives on - Babel". The Guardian.
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