In the same period when in many other regions of Italy the first experiments of vernacular writing had their start-up, the Friulian language had in its territory – beyond the old French, the Provencal, and the Venetan French – another spoken language as a competitor, the German, much more prestigious even though with a limited spread, since it was prevailingly circumscribed within the court of the patriarchs or spoken in castles and palazzos inhabited by the dominating feudal aristocracy of German descent. This is the reason why «the most coherent and organic text of the first Friulian centuries» that has reached us is as small didactic poem in medieval German, the Wälscher Gast written in the years 1215-1216 by the Friulian Tommasino di Cerclaria. The documentary witnesses and some surviving ballads in Friulian language, datable to the decades astride the fourteenth and fifteenth century induce to think of a much wider production. It is here dealt with love songs (metrically ballads) known as Piruç myo doç and Bielo dumlo, as well as a ballad traditionally known as Soneto furlan. The ballad Piruç myo doç consists of four six-verse strophes followed by a refrain, made of the two initial verses, which gives altogether thirty-six verses. The only copy transmitting this text was written by the notary Antonio Porenzoni who drew out deeds in Cividale between 1365 and 1430.
- S. XIV (Cividale del Friuli); parchment: mm 298 × 112
- Udine, ‘Joppi’ City Library, ‘Fondo principale’, 369
One among not many Friulian literary texts of the decades astride the fourteenth and fifteenth century that has outlived the injuries of time.