Last night we enjoyed the annual delights of Eurovision and my particular favourite – the voting, which this year seemed remarkably balanced. Languagewise I noticed that all but 3 of the 25 songs in the final were wholly or partly in English. What does this say about Europe and the status of the English language I wonder. Of note however was the French entry, which was not only unique in being operatic but even more interestingly was performed in Corsican. I thought it sounded like Italian, which is not surprising as it is closely related to the Tuscan dialect of that language and is mutually intelligible with Italian. There are a number of websites on this language such as Omniglot. It is very encouraging to read that the language is taught in schools and there are TV and radio programmes broadcast in the language. Most impressive of all was the massive exposure given to the language by using it as the medium for the French Eurovision entry. Will this be the start of a trend?


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