Orthographic Conference of 1876

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The conference for the creation of greater agreement in German spelling , later also called the First Orthographic Conference , was convened in Berlin in 1876 by the Prussian Minister of Education, Adalbert Falk, in order to establish uniform spelling in the German Empire , which was founded in 1871 . From January 4th to 15th, 1876, 14 specialists discussed "Language and Spelling". The basis of the discussion was a draft by the Germanist Rudolf von Raumer , from which the key points were adopted in the resolution. However, this was not implemented because of the changes that were criticized as being too extensive; to that extent the conference had failed.

Intended spelling changes

The following changes to the orthography were planned:

  • Verbs ending in -iren, -ieren should now all be written with ie , so stalk, inspect instead of stalking, inspecting .
  • Furthermore, the th, which had long since become wavering in German words such as Zierat, Armut , should now be completely omitted in the final, in the ending -tum and in the no longer recognizable basic word -tüm, i.e. embers, distress, breath, antiquity, monster, moreover in the diphthongal vowel having part, defend . On the other hand, the initial th should remain in front of simple vowels in order to make them recognizable as long, i.e. Thal, That, Thor, thun and consequently also Unterthan should be written as before.
  • The vowel doubling should be eliminated in words like Ware, Schar , but remain in Scheel, Paar, etc.
  • The common ending -niß, z. B. in parable, -nis should be written throughout .
  • Plural forms such as theories, sympathies should again generally be written with a double ee , i.e. not theories, sympathies .
  • The sound connection schst should be avoided completely and z. B. you wash instead of you wash, be written.
  • With regard to the orthography of foreign words, the newer Bavarian orthography differed from the northern German in that it introduced z for c to a wider extent, e.g. B. also in civil, Zentrum für Civil, Centrum .
  • Introduction of the moderate lower case .

Conference participants


  • Negotiations of the orthographic conference in Berlin . Hall, 1876.
  • Gustav Michaelis: The results of the orthographic conference held in Berlin January 4-15, 1876 : illuminated , Barthol, Berlin 1876 ( online in the Google Book Search USA )
  • Dieter Nerius: German orthography . Olms, Hildesheim, 2006, ISBN 3-487-13184-6 .
  • Dieter Nerius (Hrsg.): Development tendencies of the German language since the 18th century . Central Institute for Linguistics, Berlin, 1983.
  • Dieter Nerius (ed.): Studies on the history of German orthography . Olms, Hildesheim, 1992, ISBN 3-487-09626-9 .
  • Dieter Nerius (ed.): The orthographic conferences 1876 and 1901 . Olms, Hildesheim, 2002, ISBN 3-487-11444-5 .
  • Wolfgang Ullrich Wurzel: Konrad Duden , Leipzig, 1979.

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Meyers Konversationslexikon, 4th edition, 1885–1892, keyword Orthographie Online .
  2. Deutsche Welle, "Calendar Sheet" on the topic of spelling reform from June 17, 2014

See also