The Provençal language
The Provençal language has proved it’s universal and has its finger on the pulse: it’s taught in forty countries and recently became a test for the French baccalauréat.
It was brought into the spotlight by Frédéric Mistral (the founder of the Félibrige associaiton in 1854 and winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1904 for Mirèio) and his fellow 19th century Provençal poets, the Félibres.
Some Salon residents still speak it “fluently” (born between the 1920s and 40s) and Provençal is integral to the “Provençal expressions” you’ll hear every day on street corners and in cafés in Salon.
Look out for the Provençal street names in Salon to get to grips with the language.
Salon’s very own Félibre, Antoine-Blaise Crousillat
Nicknamed the “Dean of the Félibres”, Antoine-Blaise Crousillat was born in Salon in 1814 and died here in 1899. The Provençal poet started out writing for the Bouil Abaïsso newspaper and countless literary reviews before meeting Roumanille and Mistral. He studied ancient literature and published three books: La Bresco (1865), Lei Nadau, Recueil de Soixante Noëls (1880), and L’Eissame (1893).
The Eissame de Seloun association is named after Crousillat’s last tome. The association was founded in 1969 to keep the Provençal language and culture alive and help it thrive in Salon (Provençal Christmas and nativity contests, Provençal lessons, literature contests etc).