General Properties of Swiss German

  • Manuela Schönenberger
Part of the Studies in Theoretical Psycholinguistics book series (SITP, volume 27)


Switzerland is a multilingual country with four official languages: Swiss German (the mother-tongue of 75% of the population), French (20%), Italian (4%), and Rhaeto-Romanic (or Romansh) (1%). The term ‘Swiss German’ does not refer to one unique language, but to a multitude of different dialects. All Swiss-German dialects, except for that spoken in and around Basel, belong to the High Alemannic family. The dialects of Switzerland can be roughly divided into three subgroups along geographic lines: the Northeast, with Züritütsch (Zurich German) as its main representative, the Northwest with Berntütsch (Bernese) as the most prominent, and the South, comprising the somewhat more archaic dialects, e.g. Walser dialects, spoken in the remote mountainous regions.


Relative Clause Embed Clause Matrix Clause Complement Clause Maximal Projection 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Manuela Schönenberger
    • 1
  1. 1.Institut für Linguistik: AnglistikUniversität StuttgartStuttgartGermany

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