langue d'oïl

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The language of the north of France during the medieval period, so called to distinguish it from the langue d'oc (see Provençal), the distinction being based on the particle of affirmation: late Latin ‘hoc ille’ for ‘yes’ became ‘o'ïl’ in the North and ‘oc’ in the South. The distinction of language corresponded to a difference of culture and literature, the langue d'oïl being the literary medium of the trouvères, the langue d'oc, or Provençal, that of the troubadours.

Subjects: Literature.

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