• 19.05.2022 - 20.05.2022
  • 🇫🇴 Färöer / Tórshavn
  • The Arnamagnæan Institute at the University of Copenhagen
  • zur Website

Manuscript, Print and the Regional Languages of Early Modern Europe

In 1822 the Danish botanist H. C. Lyngbye published an edition of the ballad cycle of Sigurd the Dragon-Slayer, the first printed book using the Faroese language. Intended as much for a Danish audience as a Faroese one, Lyngbye’s edition sparked an interest in the language and oral literature of the Faroe Islands among scholarly circles in Denmark during a period of rising national identity across Europe.

A conference marking the anniversary of this publication explores the manuscript and print cultures of Faroese and other regional vernaculars in Early Modern Europe, ca. 1550-1850. What were the contexts in which smaller languages, some of which had never been written before, were put to paper in the wake of the Enlightenment and the rise of Romanticism? What was the interplay between regional languages and the dominant, national languages in a written context? How did rising levels literacy and access to printing contribute to the production of written texts in Europe’s minority vernaculars?