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Sgraffito in Guarda . German translation: We build beautiful houses and know that we won't stay forever. But we rarely think about the place where we go to stay forever.
Distribution area of ​​the individual Romance idioms in the canton of Graubünden. The yellow area in the east describes the distribution of Vallader including Jauer in the Val Müstair.
The pronunciation of the word eu (German I ) in the various dialects of the Lower Engadine and Val Müstair, as of 1962. It is not clear when exactly the sound / g / of the underlying Latin word ego was lost, at least the letter was in the typeface g still present in the second half of the 18th century: eug .
The Engadiner Post / Posta Ladina newspaper, which appears three times a week, appears in the Upper Engadin, but around 80% of the Romansh articles are in Vallader.

Vallader (debate [ vɐlaːdɛr ], German and Unterengadinisch ) is a Grison Romanesque idiom and is in the Lower Engadine between Martina and Zernez and in the Val Müstair , both areas in the east of the canton of Grisons spoken.


Vallader is a variant of the Ladin and thus one of the five idioms of the Romansh language of the Grisons. Vallader is spoken both in the Lower Engadine and in the neighboring Val Müstair, there in the variant of the Jauer . Vallader has a total of around 7,000 speakers.

Like all five Romansh idioms, Vallader has a written language character: The language has a complex, uniform grammar, has dictionaries (also online), a literary scene and teaching aids for many school subjects. However, there is no separate Google version, a separate Wikipedia version or a spelling correction for MS Word .


Comparison of Romansh

Vallader shares many characteristics with the Upper Engadine idiom Puter . At the lexical level, the languages ​​are so similar that a common dictionary exists. Vallader shares with Puter phonetically the rounded palatals [y] and [ø], which in the rest of the Romansh does not occur. This is also clearly visible to the layperson through the numerous ü and ö in the typeface.

The two idioms also share the possession of a Passà defini and a Passà anteriur, both of which do not or no longer occur in the other idioms. The two tenses correspond to the Italian Passato remoto and the French Passé simple . These tenses are also reserved for literature in the two Ladin idioms. In Altsurselvischen such synthetic Präteritalform existed as well.

Comparison turkey

Compared to Puter, the Vallader script and pronunciation are closer: By and large, Vallader pronunciation can be derived from the script.

Verbs of the first conjugation end in Vallader on the stressed -ar, while in Puter they end consistently on the stressed -er.

The differences between the two idioms in the conjugation are rather large, for example in the present tense of avair (dt. To have ):

idiom 1. Sg. 2nd Sg. 3rd Sg. 1st pl. 2nd pl. 3rd pl.
Turkey eau d'he you do el ho nus avains vus avais els haun
Vallader eu n'ha do el ha nus vain vus vaivat / avaivat / avais els han


Like the other Romansh idioms, Vallader contains many Germanisms on the level of vocabulary, phraseology and grammar. The examples in the lexical area also relate to terms of daily use or the alpine environment and are not limited to neologisms , which are likely to be adopted in one's own vocabulary.

Examples at the lexical level: god (from ahd. Forest ), nüzzaivel (dt. Useful ,) Stambuoch (dt. Capricorn or) rispli (dt. Pencil, from Swiss German risbli, Rice Lead ).

As examples on the phraseological level, the numerous connections between verb and adverb stand out , for example far aint ( eng . To make ), crescher sü ( eng . To grow up ) or ir giò ( eng . To go under ). Loan translations from (Swiss) German of the type avair gugent (German: like to have ) are also unusual for a Romance language. In the 1880s, the Italian linguist Graziadio Ascoli coined the catchphrase materia romana e spirito tedesco (German: Romanesque basic mass and German spirit ) for this Romanesque phenomenon .

There are also combined lexical-phraseological Germanisms, for example far ün strich tras il quint, German to thwart the bill .

In the area of ​​grammar, the following should be mentioned: the inversion after adverbs at the beginning of a sentence, the use of the subjunctive in indirect speech or the blocking of auxiliary verb and participle by further parts of sentences in the perfect tense and in other periphrastic verb forms.



In the spoken language, the Lower Engadine and Münstertal use local dialects, which can differ greatly from the standard language. The speakers can generally determine the origin of their interlocutor precisely to the place. For example, there are the following local pronunciations for the word eu (dt. I ): [ ˈɛː ], [ ˈɛw ], [ ˈjɛ ], [ ˈjɐ ], [ ˈjow ] and [ ˈjaw ].


Jauer is the name for the dialect of Vallader, which is spoken in the Val Müstair.

Jauer is characterized by the emphasis on the verbs of the 1st conjugation on the penultimate syllable and the change in the ending from -ar to -er. In addition, stressed a is diphthongized . Example: The chantàr ( Eng . To sing ) of the standard Vallader becomes Jauer chàunter .

Jauer has no written language tradition. However, a volume of stories was published in Jauer for the first time in 2007.

Vallader was used as the language of instruction in the schools of Val Müstair until 2008, followed by Rumantsch Grischun for a short time . However, due to the referendum in spring 2012, this was reversed.

Samnaun dialect

Samnaun (in Vallader Samignun ) is now German-speaking ( Tyrolean ), but originally also belonged to the language area of ​​Vallader. The first move towards Tyrolean was made around 1675. In 1830, at the same time as the Säumerweg was expanded into the Tyrolean Spiss , a Tyrolean teacher introduced German as the language of instruction. The last spokesman for the Samnaun Romansh was Augustin Heiss, who died in 1935. In other sources, the two Prinz sisters, born in 1830 and 1837, are also mentioned as the “last bearers of Samnaun's romance”.

It is known that the pronunciation had long since moved closer to German or Tyrolean. Among other things, the following are documented:

Samnaun dialect Vallader German
baiber baiver drink
barva barba Uncle, Bart
nelja, neela nöglia Nothing
veela vöglia will
fim füm smoke
glim glow light
tavo of it to
tower durmir sleep

First writings and authors

As early as 1536, Philipp Gallicius translated important biblical and confessional texts such as the Our Father's prayer, the Apostolicum , the Ten Commandments and some Psalms into the spoken language, making him one of the founders of the Rhaeto-Romanic written language. The first printed document in Vallader is the book of psalms Vn cudesch da Psalms by Durich Chiampell from 1562.

Important authors who wrote or write in Vallader are Peider Lansel , Men Rauch , Men Gaudenz , the brothers Andri and Oscar Peer , Luisa Famos , Cla Biert , Leta Semadeni and Rut Plouda-Stecher .

The songwriter Linard Bardill also uses Vallader when he is not singing or writing in German or Rumantsch Grischun.

Language examples

The following examples allow a comparison of Vallader including Jauer with Rumantsch Grischun and the German.


La vuolp d'eira darcheu üna jada fomantada. Qua ha'la vis sün ün pin ün corv chi tgnaiva ün toc chaschöl in seis pical. Quai am gustess, ha'la pensà, ed ha clomà al corv: “Che bel cha tü est! Scha teis chant es uschè bel sco tia apparentscha, lura est tü il plü bel utschè da tuots. "


La uolp d'era darchiau üna jada fomantada. Qua ha'la vis sün ün pin ün corv chi tegnea ün toc chaschöl in ses pical. Quai ma gustess, ha'la s'impissà, ed ha clomà al corv: “Cha bel cha tü esch! Scha tes chaunt es ischè bel sco tia apparentscha, lura esch tü il pü bel utschè da tots ” .

Rumantsch Grischun

La vulp era puspè ina giada fomentada. Qua ha ella vis sin in pign in corv che tegneva in toc chaschiel en ses pichel. Quai ma gustass, ha ella pensà, ed ha clamà al corv: “Tge bel che ti es! Sche tes chant è uschè bel sco tia parita, lura es ti il ​​pli bel utschè da tuts. "


The fox was hungry again. Then he saw a raven on a fir tree with a piece of cheese in its beak. I would like that, he thought, and called to the raven: “How beautiful you are! If your singing is as beautiful as your looks, then you are the most beautiful of all birds. "


  • Gion Tscharner: Dicziunari - Dictionary vallader-tudais-ch / German-Vallader. Lehrmittelverlag des Kantons Graubünden, Chur 2003, OCLC 718284615 .
  • Martin Schlatter: I'm learning Romansh. [Roth, Thusis] 2003 9 .
  • Gian Paul Ganzoni: Grammatica ladina. Grammatica sistematica dal rumantscha d'Engiadina Bassa per scolars e creschüts da lingua rumantscha e francesa. Uniun dals Grischs and Lia Rumantscha, [Samedan?] 1983, OCLC 20375379 (bilingual grammar Lower Engadin / French).

Literature on Vallader is published by the Lia Rumantscha in Chur , among others .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. a b c d e Oscar Peer (ed.): Dicziunari rumantsch. Ladin - tudais-ch. Stamparia Engiadinaisa, Chur 1962, OCLC 884457901 . Lia rumantscha, [Cuira] 1995 4 , OCLC 258534729 .
  2. Example: Quai ch'eug requint non es fablas, mo la vardat, perchie naj eug svess vis et cognoscü. In: Martin Peider Schmid von Grünegg: Chiantun verd in chronographia rhetica illustrada. Self-published, Ftan 1772 ff.
  3. Swiss Federal Census of 1990: 7756 people in total, Vallader as the best spoken language: 5243. Quoted in mini-portrait in Romansh ( memento of March 13, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 206 kB). In:, accessed on October 18, 2012.
  4. Jachen Curdin Arquint: Vierv Ladin. Grammatica elementara dal rumantsch d'Engiadina bassa. Roth, Tusan 1964, OCLC 179713907 .
  5. ^ Gion Tscharner: Dicziunari - Dictionary Vallader Tudais-ch - German Vallader. 2006.
  6. a b Dictionary from ICT-Atelier ( memento from May 15, 2012 in the web archive ), accessed on May 6, 2016 (only display the homepage, functions cannot be used). Other dictionaries: See web links .
  7. Teaching material directory of the Canton of Graubünden 2012/2013 ( Memento from June 1, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 125 kB). In:, accessed on May 5, 2016.
  8. ^ Lia Rumantscha , category books / teaching aids. In:, last accessed on May 5, 2016.
  9. a b c Ricarda Liver: Romansh. An introduction to the Romansh language of the Grisons (= fool's study books ). 2., revised. and exp. Edition. Narr, Tübingen 2010, ISBN 978-3-8233-6556-3 .
  10. ^ Graziadio Isaia Ascoli (1880-1883): Annotazioni sistematiche al Barlaam e Giosafat soprasilvano . Saggio di morfologia e lessicologia soprasilvana (= Archivio glottologico italiano. Vol. 7, part 3a, ISSN  0004-0207 ). E. Loescher, Roma / Torino / Firenze 1883, OCLC 79879303 .
  11. ^ Gerhard Rohlfs : Romanic loan translations on a Germanic basis (Materia romana, spirito germanico) (= session reports of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. Philosophical-historical class. 1983, volume 4). Publ. Of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences, Munich 1984, ISBN 3-7696-1523-9 .
  12. ^ Ricarda Liver: Romansh. An introduction to the Romansh language of the Grisons. Narr, Tübingen 2010 2 , p. 67.
  13. Plinio Meyer: Dschon Uein id atras istorias grischunas. Uniun dals Grischs, Celerina 2007, ISBN 978-3-85637-342-9 . German translation: Dschon Uein and other Bündner stories.
  14. a b The language of the Samnaun people ( Memento from September 4, 2014 in the Internet Archive ). In: Website of the municipality of Samnaun, accessed on October 17, 2012.
  15. ^ The broadcast Balcun Tort from November 13, 1977. In:, accessed on October 12, 2016.
  16. ^ Ada Ritter: Historical phonology of the extinct Romanesque dialect of Samnaun (Switzerland, Canton of Graubünden). In: Romania Occidentalis. Vol. 6. Verlag A. Lehmann, Gerbrunn near Würzburg 1981, OCLC 72986189 , p. 25.
  17. The broadcast Balcun Tort on November 13, 1977 states 1935 as the year of death of the last Romansh-speaking person. In:, accessed October 12, 2016.
  18. The website of the municipality of Samnaun also mentions the year 1935: The language of the Samnaun people ( Memento of September 4, 2014 in the Internet Archive ). In:, accessed on October 17, 2012.
  19. C. Täuber: Two recently developed Graubünden valleys (Avers and Samnaun). In: Yearbook of the Swiss Alpine Club (JSA). 48, 1912/13, ZDB -ID 217189-2 , p. 3–47 ( online. (PDF @1@ 2Template: Dead Link / ;? KB) (No longer available online.) In: Formerly in the original ; accessed on May 21, 2019 (no mementos)  ( page no longer available , search in web archives ) ); Search. In:, accessed on October 12, 2016 (with registration or chargeable via Subito , free around 2019).
  20. ^ Martin Bundi : Gallicius, Philipp. In: Historical Lexicon of Switzerland . March 15, 2017. Retrieved May 21, 2019 .
  21. ^ Conradin Bonorand : Campell, Ulrich [Duri Champell]. In: Historical Lexicon of Switzerland . February 15, 2005 , accessed May 21, 2019 .
  22. Cf. Huldrych Blanke: The fourfold meaning of Durich Chiampell. In: Zwingliana. Vol. 11 (1963), H. 10, ISSN  0254-4407 , pp. 649-662, here: 652-656 (PDF; 808 kB), accessed on October 18, 2012.
  23. pers. Come on. August 20, 2012.
  24. Lia Rumantscha (Ed.): Rumantsch - Facts & Figures. From the German by Daniel Telli. 2nd, revised and updated edition. Chur 2004, ISBN 3-03900-033-0 , p. 31 (105 p .; online) ( Memento from June 10, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 3487 kB), accessed on May 5, 2016.