Caoimhin O Donnaile caoimhin at
Tue Jan 22 17:03:50 CET 2008

Frank said:

> Fortunately there is no "sxu" in the registry (yet),
> we can ignore it.

There will be very soon though, when ISO 639-3 gets included:

And when ISO 639-3 with all its German dialects/languages gets
included, it will increase the tendency for "de" to be used just
for Ethnologue "deu", "Standard German", to which it is equated,
rather than as as vague macrolanguage.

Thomas said:

> sxu is not quite appropriate. sxu is clearly Middle German whereas
> Erzgebirgisch belongs to the Upper German group  [...]
> 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.

It's a problem all right.  In my "ideal world", language/dialect
codes would have four (or maybe five) characters - enough to give
all languages past and present, all the dialects we are likely to
deal with, and all macrolanguages at every level an atomic code.
Then browsers and other applications would consult and cache an
online database which had the latest classifications and
subclassifications according to the latest linguistic work.
But such ideas belong on the LTRU list, not here, and we have
to make the best of the world we have.

I am only being a "devil's advocate" and don't have any personal
preference.  I don't have enough knowledge to know whether
"de-erzgeb" or "sxu-erzgeb" or even "bar-erzgeb" might be best.


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