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Nevertheless, as will be discussed below, their work provided a philological tradition out of which modern day language planning efforts would grow in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. 19 The advent of heavy industrialization in the 19th century—particularly in the Nervion river valley near Bilbao, and in towns scattered throughout Gipuzkoa— brought new kinds of pressure to bear on Basque in areas that had previously been spared language shift. One consequence of industrialization was the arrival of large numbers of Spanish-speaking immigrants from other parts of the Iberian peninsula, who sought to fill new factory jobs.

22 renaissance following the end of the second Carlist war in Spain in 1876. One of the most prominent organizations in this renaissance was the Asociación Euskara de Navarra (Basque Association of Navarre) led by Arturo Campión. Campión and his followers raised public awareness of Basque’s decline and were among the first to articulate an understanding of the cause of language shift: The Basque [speaker] is losing ground. The tide is rising; the corrupting waters of assimilation push their muck up to the peaks of the highest mountains.

Nevertheless, opinions varied greatly as to what this standard should be. One 12 My translation. “Tenemos hoy, para una población de medio millón de euzkeldunes, tres principales dialectos literario. ” 30 proposed option was to adopt one of the literary dialects. The leading candidates to be the standard under this view were Lapurdian or Gipuzkoan, since these dialects had the richest literary traditions. 1), they are often considered to be the most easily intelligible to speakers of other dialects (Mitxelena 1968).

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