RE: Alemannic/Schwyzerdütsch, ISO 639-2 three-letter language code

Peter Constable petercon at
Tue Sep 28 13:38:41 CEST 2004

> From: ietf-languages-bounces at [mailto:ietf-languages-
> bounces at] On Behalf Of Georg Schweizer

> > "sch" isn't used in ISO 639-2 nor in the 14th edition of the
> > Ethnologue (, but in Peter Constable's Draft 5
> > of ISO 639-3 it is used for "Sakechep", a language of India by
> > the looks of things which gets only 3 hits with Google.
> Thanks a lot for cross-checking! This does not mean, that "sch"
> is already assigned.

Actually, yes it does.

> However, if "sch" is not available I'd
> suggest to introduce "scd" for Alemannic/Schwyzerdütsch.

The symbol "scd" is not assigned. 

> > It might be worth trying to find out whether the 15th edition
> > of the Ethnologue [...]
> > divides up the Alemannic languages differently from
> > the 14th edition.

I believe the category identified by "GSW" has not been split in the 15th edition.

> I've never seen SIL's peculiar language family tree for
> "Alemannisch"/"Alemannic"/"Allemannic" anywhere before.

That doesn't mean it isn't used elsewhere. From the Introduction to Ethn14:

The organization of linguistic relationships outlined in the Oxford University Press International Encyclopedia of Linguistics, 1992, William Bright, ed., is followed for most language families, because it is the most comprehensive and up-to-date guide available. For Austronesian languages, the Comparative Austronesian Dictionary, 1995, Darrell Tryon, ed., is followed. Some changes have been entered based on more recent comparative studies...

The traditional numbering system used to identify different subgroups of Bantu languages in Africa has been followed.

If you have information regarding the distinctness of Alsatian from Alemannic spoken in Switzerland, I encourage you to contact the Ethnologue staff to provide feedback; inclusion of supporting evidence is highly recommended. See for further info.

Peter Constable

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