Islandsk og de Skandinaviske Språkene
Hei alle sammen!
Just a question....
I know that Icelandic, along with all of the other Scandinavian Languages (Dansk, Norsk, Svenska) evolved from old Norse, Icelandic being the closest to Old Norse. But I was wondering, which of the three Scandinavian languages are closest to Icelandic?
I've read that Faroese is the closest, but out of the Big Three (Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish) I'd say it would be closer to what Norwegian was before Danish rule.
Besides Faroese, the closest to Icelandic out of Norwegian Nynorsk, Norwegian bokmål, Danish and Swedish would be Norwegian Nynorsk, which my grandmother spoke as a child.
Apart from Faroese the thing would be between Landsmål (Høgnorsk) and Elfdalian. Elfdalian is very conservative, it has nasals, lost in Icelandic and even in late Old Icelandic. The thing is that Elfdalian belongs to the eastern Norse language group, whereas Old and Modern Icelandic are West Norse languages.
Ivar Aasen basically wanted to collect the most conservative forms of the different western dialects in order to get a modern Norwegian language as close to Old Norse as possible. From Wikipedia:
"Aasen's work is based on the idea that Norwegian dialects had a common structure that made them a separate language alongside Danish and Swedish. The central point for Aasen therefore became to find and show the structural dependencies between the dialects. In order to abstract this structure from the variety of dialects, he developed some basic criteria, which he called the most perfect form. He defined this form as the one that best showed the connection to related words, with similar words, and with the forms in Old Norwegian. No single dialect had all the perfect forms, each dialect had preserved different aspects and parts of the language. Through such a systematic approach, one could arrive at a uniting expression for all Norwegian dialects, what Aasen called the fundamental dialect, and Einar Haugen has called Proto-Norwegian."
This Landsmål evolved into Nynorsk today, whereas some few people want to use Landsmål as Ivar Aasen created it and it's called nowadays Høgnorsk.
I believe one should study both Elfdalian and Høgnorsk very well in order to determine which is the closest to Modern Icelandic, because it's not easy to say.
Here you can check a høgnorsk grammar: http://sambandet.no/grammatikk/
I couldn't find an Elfdalian one, but it'd be interesting to have a look at it.