Belgium is known as a bilingual country, with the northern part (Flanders) speaking Dutch and the southern part (Wallonia) speaking French. But, of course, it’s not quite that simple. Just as people in Flanders speak a similar but separate language in its own right—Flemish—so too do the people of Wallonia speak their own language—Walloon. Though it resembles Standard Belgian French in many ways, Walloon is its own language still spoken by around 600,000 people, particularly in rural Wallonia.
As with many regional languages, Walloon is classified as endangered, since French is seen as more prestigious and youth generally prefer it over Walloon. Even though various organizations, particularly theaters, are fighting to keep Walloon alive, most translation agencies overlook this regional Belgian language, offering translation services only in Standard French instead. At TranslationServices.com, we naturally offer French translation services, but we also offer specific Walloon translation services because we understand how important regional languages are.
If you’re interested in Walloon translation services, get in touch today and request a free quote.
How does Walloon differ from Standard French?
Upon learning about Walloon, the first question at the front of anyone’s mind would be, “How is it different from French?” Walloon has taken significantly more influence from German than Standard French, resulting in drastically different vocabulary in some cases. Walloon’s distinctly German-influenced lexicon, as well as the archaisms it’s retained from Latin, distinguishes it from other langue d'oïl languages. Walloon has also evolved conservatively in terms of phonetics, remaining quite similar to the form it took in the High Middle Ages.
Regarding grammatical differences, unlike Standard French but like German, Walloon places adjectives before the noun. Like French, the language contains two genders—masculine and feminine—but they’re not used in quite the same way. Feminine adjective forms are usually derived by adding an -e, unless the masculine form already ends in -e, but feminine plural adjectives that come before the noun are formed by changing the -e to -è and adding the normal plural -s. Walloon doesn’t mark gender in the definite article or possessives, making it easier than French in that regard. Also, its extensive contact with German has resulted in some cases of German-like syntax that differ from Standard French.
We have a team full of passionate Walloon speakers who want to help their language thrive by providing high-quality Walloon translation services to anyone looking for them.
Walloon translation is a great way to preserve the language
There are many reasons to purchase Walloon translation services, whether you’re translating to Walloon or from it. Our translators, who come from all over Wallonia, are eager to help clients seeking high-quality translations to and from the language. This could include historians looking for translations of historical documents or modern-day Walloon speakers who want to translate literature or academic papers for an international audience. It could also include companies that want to connect more deeply with their Walloon-speaking population or content creators passionate about making their books, apps, websites, games, or other content available in Walloon. Whatever you need, our Walloon translators are happy to oblige.
Get started with your Walloon translation right away by messaging us today.