Difference Between Italian and Sicilian

Main Difference

When looking at different languages, there is always the impression that somehow they are related to each other. This variation is because many words and rhythm of them are similar to each other. Italian and Sicilian are two such ones who have originated from the same place but are different. Their main difference can be the places where they speak. Italian is the language that became common in the many parts of the world; most famous ones include Italy itself, Switzerland, Vatican City, Croatia and some other parts. Whereas, Sicilian only exists on the Island of Sicilia and few other parts.

Comparison Chart

Basis of DistinctionItalianSicilian
OriginRome, Italy.Sicily, Italy
Native Speakers65 million4.5 million
Total Speakers85 million0.5 million
DistinctionIt is the third biggest language that exists within the European UnionIt is one of the least spoken languages in the world
StatusConsidered to be progressing at a rapid rate.Added in the engendered languages by UNESCO
ValueConsidered a language of romance.Deemed to be a vulgar language that gets regular criticism.
CountriesItaly, Switzerland, San Marino, Vatican City, Slovenia, and Croatia.Sicilia and some migrants.
RelationClosest to LatinClosest to Italian

Italian

Italian is the language spoken in the many parts of the world; most famous ones include Italy itself, Switzerland, Vatican City, Croatia and some other parts. There are more than 65 million people in the world and acts as native speakers of this language, that is just in the EU, while the total number of such people increases to 85 million around the world. The reason it gets so much importance is that it is the language that is closest to Latin mostly stays active on the basis of many other languages. Secondly, the use comes as the official language of Vatican City which is the holiest place among the Christians. The word itself originated from the Tuscan writers who used it as the basis of poetry and other artistic works they did in the 12th century and ever since it started gaining popularity and currently it the third biggest spoken one in the European Union. It is therefore considered a poetic language and is used in such works ever since. It has not deviated from the Latin manuscript and therefore has a solid foundation when it comes to words and phrases. When the ear of renaissance began, Italian was started to use in the courts of every state; this helped in establishing it properly in the official world. It gained even more importance when Napoleon attacked Italy in the 19th century; this attack united many parts of the country, who were speaking different versions and helped in making it a language that spread unanimously among people. It also has its roots in Africa where Italy ruled some of the countries. Therefore people still speak the language although it is not that common among them but the main source of language speakers still comes from the European countries.

Sicilian

Sicilian is the language that has originated from Italy but is relatively different from the Italian language. It is specific to the parts of the country such as Sicilia that is the home, and some others such as Calabria, Campania, and Apulia. Since it is unique to few parts the total number of native speakers of this language are not much, almost 5 million people around the world termed as the native speakers of it, and for a very long time, it has been on the decline. This fact is the reason that it rates as a minority language by the United Nations, and steps are being taken to preserve it. It is also a poetic style but the one that is most ancient among the local ones. That said, also considered a vulgar language and therefore sharply criticized by several sectors who argue against its consideration as romantic. It is also common among the migrants who come to the Island of Sicily and the other places such as the United States and Canada. It is not an official language of any country, and there is nobody who helps in regulating it and creating some specific rules under which it has uses. Although some institutions have been regularly researching on it and working on improving and preserving the language. It also contains different dialects, and under them, it can be used, these include western Sicilian, southeast metafonetica, and Ennese along with much more. Although it is close to Italian there are still many differences among them and can be explained and seen in the way; the words uttered. Safe to say that they have the closest relationship with Italian people since they are part of the same country, therefore, the language does not get proper recognition around the world.

Key Differences

  1. Italian is the third biggest language that is spoken within the European Union whereas Sicilian is not that vast and is spoken in few parts of Italy and some other migrant societies.
  2. There are proper rules and sets of principles under which the Italian language is spoken around the world whereas there are no such rules or any institutions that regulate Sicilian language.
  3. The Italian language is used to write poetry and other artistic works around the world whereas Sicilian language is considered a rough and vulgar language.
  4. There are more than 65 million native speakers of Italian language while the total number around the world reaches to 85 million, while there are just 5 million native speakers of the Sicilian language in the world today.
  5. Italian is the mother tongue for countries including Italy, Switzerland, San Marino, Vatican City, Slovenia (Slovene Istria) and Croatia (Istria County) whereas Sicilian language is native to people living in the Sicily Island in Italy.
  6. Italian is a language that considers closest to the Latin language that has become the basis of all the modern ones, whereas Sicilian is furthest away from Latin but closely linked with Italian.
  7. Sicilian falls in the UNESCO heritage language because of the less amount of people who speak it.

Comparison Video

YouTube video
Harlon Moss

Harlon currently works as a quality moderator and content writer for Difference Wiki. He graduated from the University of California in 2010 with a degree in Computer Science. Follow him on Twitter @HarlonMoss

View all posts by Harlon Moss