Thomas Goldammer thogol at
Tue Jan 22 09:59:14 CET 2008

> >
> > > > Prefix: de
> > ...
> >
> > > it looks as if "sxu" might be a more appropriate prefix than "de".
> >

Dear all,

sxu is not quite appropriate. sxu is clearly Middle German whereas
Erzgebirgisch belongs to the Upper German group (one can easily show
this due to many common developments and shared retentions in
phonology, morphology and lexicon).
I know, there was this mistake in Ethnologue 14 where Erzgebirgisch
was listed as a dialect of sxu, but that was corrected in Ethnologue
15. I live now in an sxu speaking area (Osterlaendisch variety), and
most people here claim that they can't understand Erzgebirgisch (which
surprised me a little bit, but I grew up in an sxu/erzgeb contact zone
and thus learned both dialects). They might understand Eastern
Erzgebirgisch better, due to the massive influence of sxu on this
variety, but the people consider the Western variety as "purer", and
most authors write in the western variety (ok, this might be because
it has quite more speakers).
Until extensive linguistic work has been done to fully classify all
these German varieties, dialects and dialect continuums, I would
prefer to get all these "unclassified" dialects tagged with "de".
That's probably the one, one can't make mistakes with.

Best regards,

Thomas Goldammer, M.A.
Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
 - Department of Linguistics -
Deutscher Platz 6
D-04103 Leipzig

Tel.: (0049) (341) 3550-309
Mail (off.): thomas_goldammer at
Mail (priv.): thogol at

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