Eifel dialects

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The Eifel dialects are among the Moselle-Franconian dialects in the southern Eifel . They are very similar to the Luxembourgish language . In the northern Eifel, on the other hand, they belong to the Ripuarian dialect group and are more similar to Öcher Platt or Kölschen . In between there are the transitions typical of a dialect continuum , in which more or less each village speaks a little differently than its neighboring towns. According to the linguistic definition, Moselle Franconian and Ripuarian belong to Middle Franconian .

Linguistic geography

The territorial structures, as they have developed in the Eifel since Roman times , also determined the development of the Eifel dialects. Linguistically, the Eifel can be divided into the Moselle-Franconian and Ripuarian dialect areas. The "Eifel language barrier", which separates the two dialects as a broad border, stretches from the northern part of the Eifel district Bitburg-Prüm via Kronenburg , Blankenheim , Nettersheim , Altenahr and Ahrweiler along the Vinxtbach to its confluence with the Rhine near Bad Breisig . The old Roman border between Germania superior and Germania inferior also ran here . In the feudal period , this was the border between Kurtrier and Kurköln , and today the state border between North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate runs within this line, which is also known in linguistics as the Vinxtbach line or the Dorp-Dorf line . Eifeler dialect is also spoken in the neighboring German-speaking Community of Belgium: Especially in the southern part of this region, which is also known as the Belgian Eifel , the dialect has largely been able to retain its importance in everyday life. Historically, these areas once belonged mainly to the Duchy of Luxembourg (until 1815) , smaller units also to Kurtrier.

The the op / of border west of the Moselle forms the southern border of the Eifel dialects. In Trier, for example, the Moselle-Franconian Trierisch is spoken, which stands out from the surrounding dialects.


Elfriede Trierweiler: E Goad su like dumals, Messericher dialect

There are differences between the two Eifel dialects in pronunciation, expression, vocabulary and in the grammar of the dialect .

Also noteworthy is the strong differentiation of terms for objects used in everyday rural life. The High German basket has some equivalents with korw , rest , kürwel , mang , almond or waan , each of which denotes a special basket shape. A similar variety of terms can be observed in the designation of livestock .

The Eifel dialect is rich in pictorial expressions that are often used in place of abstract terms. The expression is often very hearty. "Hen well mot de jruuße Honne Seche on krecht et Been net op jehove" ("He wants to pee with the big dogs and can't get his leg lifted") is what they say when someone is conceited and haughty.

Special dialects are the dealer dialects known as “ Jenisch ” , which have been handed down from Neroth or Speicher . Stoneware dealers, mousetrap hunters and all kinds of other traveling people have cultivated these secret languages.

The language-forming influence of the school and the media is also noticeable in the Eifel dialects. After dialect was regarded as an inferior form of language for decades, one can also see an emancipation of dialect speakers in the Eifel region . In the publications of the Eifeler Geschichtsvereine, the Eifelverein or in cultural magazines such as the " Krautgarten " published in St. Vith , there is a tendency towards the view that dialect mastery is understood as an important communicative possibility.

Since the Eifel was only very poorly connected to the rest of the German-speaking area for centuries, the Moselle-Franconian language has been preserved in a relatively unadulterated form. There is still an extensive vocabulary of its own. The second sound shift was only partially carried out. There are also some interesting peculiarities in the grammar, such as the Eifel rule , according to which the final -n is often omitted. The number two is declined according to gender in the Eifeler Moselle Franconian, like the number one in High German . Examples: two women , two men , two hoarse (houses). If one speaks of two men, it is said: de zweng ; with two women: de two ; in the case of a man and a woman likewise: de two .

Examples from the vocabulary

Maanischder Platt with Carlo Padilla in the Maarmuseum

An example of verb forms of the verb “build”: Eich build, Dou boschs, Hean boscht, sei boscht, et boscht, mier build, Dir build, be build; built - jeboscht

This verb form is a good example of a pronunciation that many today no longer come across easily. The forms Dou boschs, hean boscht are hardly spoken today and are replaced by “Dou boust”, “Hean builds”.

The potato also varies a lot from north to south. While in the southern Eifel the potato, similar to the neighboring Hunsrück area, is called Grumbeer (from Grundbirne), the name changes the further north the region is. In the Middle Eifel, the potato is known as Krumper, while z. B. in the region of Daun is also called Schrumper and in the Eischwiele spoken on the northern edge of the Eifel it is called Platt Eapel.

From south to north, apart from the differences between individual villages, there are also systematic differences. Words that begin with "g" are pronounced that way in Bitburger Gutland (Bekof). "Goden Dach, how is it", "Quite God". North of this these words are pronounced with "j". “Joden Dach, wie jed et?”, “Janz Jod”. According to the linguistic atlas of the Rhine Province in Germany, the border runs along a line north of Dasburg-Neuerburg-Kyllburg-Manderscheid-Kaisersesch-Andernach and across the Rhine near Altenkirchen.

The word "beautiful" has many variants: schong (towards Islek ), sching (Bekof), schin ( Niederhersdorf ), schalong (Daun region).

The forms of “beautiful” are also on the decline. To many, these forms of pronunciation seem too crude. It then becomes “Dat as awer beautiful”, which then sounds a bit superimposed and anything but (Moselle Franconian) delabialized .

Many special forms have now been heavily sanded down and adapted to the standard language. Fifty years ago, for example, a child in Lind (Ahr) was asked: “Jangk ens ahn de Luëch!” Today in many places it would sound more like: “Jeh ma an de Luff!” (Translation: “Get some air! ").

The Eifler dialect differs from the Luxembourgish language particularly through its numerous French loanwords . There were also numerous French loan words in the Bekof, but these are rarely used today: Plafong (ceiling), Parplü (umbrella), Trittoir (sidewalk), Fuschett (fork), the list can go on and on. It can also be noted that independent Moselle Franconian terms are being replaced by High German: Den ass bestoht, today: Den ass gehiroat (He is married). Teschen or Teschent, today: between (between) etc.

Individual evidence

  1. Tim Kallenborn: Regional linguistic syntax of Moselle Franconian. (No longer available online.) Formerly in the original ; accessed on March 15, 2018 .  ( Page no longer available , search in web archives )@1@ 2Template: Dead Link / www.rug.nl
  2. Müller, Rudolf; Schaal, Frank; Kaufmann, Burkhard; Berens, Michael; Lembach, Jan; Lang, Manfred; Linden, FP; Lüttgau, Ernst; Loscheider, Robert; Zierden, Josef; Wendt, Christoph; Reger, Karl; Bouvet, Rike; Ixfeld, Alwin; Schulze, Christine: The Eifel - travel reading book . ISBN 978-3-935281-63-8 , pp. 86 f .
  3. Archive link ( Memento of the original from July 4, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.  @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.rheinische-landeskunde.lvr.de
  4. ^ Ostbelgische Nachrichten in Eifeler Low German (midnight point of view). Retrieved March 16, 2018 .
  5. Thomas Abel: The language of the Moselle Franconia. Retrieved March 16, 2017 .
  6. ^ Adam Wrede: Eifeler Volkskunde Bonn. 1924, pp. 101-133.
  7. Irreler Platt learn with film classics - Today: "Der Pate" ("Den Päter"). Retrieved March 16, 2018 .


  • Fritz Koenn: " From Abelong bos Zau dich Jong - Eifel words and expressions collected and briefly explained by Fritz Koenn". Helios, Aachen 1995, ISBN 3-925087-59-1 .
  • Hans-Dieter Arntz : Jewish in dialect and Platt der Voreifel and Eifel - coming to terms with the past by remembering linguistic relics . In: District Euskirchen (Hrsg.): Yearbook of the District Euskirchen 2010 , pp. 8-17.

Web links

Commons : Eifel Dialects  - collection of images, videos and audio files