Hutterite German

Hutterite German (German: Hutterisch) is an Upper German dialect of the Bavarian variety of the German language, which is spoken by Hutterite communities in Canada and the United States. Hutterite is also called Tirolean, but this is an anachronism.

Hutterite German
RegionAlberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, Canada; Washington, Montana, Minnesota, North and South Dakota.
Native speakers
40,000 (2007)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3geh

Distribution and literacy

Hutterite is spoken in the US states of Washington, Montana, North and South Dakota, Minnesota and Oregon; and in the Canadian provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. Its speakers belong to the Schmiedleit, Lehrerleit, and Dariusleit Hutterite groups, but there are also some few speakers among the older generations of Prairieleit (the descendants of those Hutterites who chose not to settle in colonies). Hutterite children who grow up in the colonies learn and speak first Hutterite German before learning English, the standard language of the surrounding areas.

As of 2003, there are about 34,000 speakers in the world, 85% of them living in 333 communities in Canada and the remaining 15% in 123 communities in the USA. Canadian adults are generally literate in Early New High German (also called "Biblical German", the predecessor to Standard German used by Martin Luther) that they employ as the written form for Scriptures while Standard German is used in the USA for religious activities. Children learn English at school; Canadian Hutterites have a functional knowledge of English. Hutterite is for the most part an unwritten language, though in August 2006 Hutterite author Linda Maendel released a children's story titled Lindas glücklicher Tag (Linda's Happy Day) in which all the dialogue is written in the dialect. Maendel is also working on a series of biblical stories with Wycliff Bible translators.

History and related languages

Hutterite German is a koiné language based on the Bavarian dialects spoken in Tyrol, home of Jacob Hutter, and Carinthia in the mid-18th century. It is only 50% intelligible to a speaker of Pennsylvania German,[3] as the latter variant is based on dialects spoken around the Electoral Palatinate. Hutterite German therefore belongs to the Southern Bavarian dialect group which is spoken in the southern parts of Bavaria and in Austria except for the westernmost part (Vorarlberg).

Although the Hutterites once spoke Tirolean German, they no longer do. The switch among Hutterites from Tirolean German to Carinthian German occurred during years of severe persecution in Europe when Hutterite communities were devastated and survival depended on the conversion of many Carinthian Landler refugees to Hutterite anabaptism.

The language has adopted a limited number of Russian and also many English loan words, which are the result of Hutterite migrations into Eastern Europe and now North America. The core vocabulary is still almost exclusively of German origin.

See also


  1. ^ Hutterite German at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Hutterite German". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. ^ The Ethnologue, 16th ed

External links


  • Helga Lorenz-Andreasch: "Mir sein jå kolla Teitschverderber" - die Sprache der Schmiedeleut-Hutterer in Manitoba/Kanada, Wien 2004. (Contains a short description of Hutterisch)
  • Hoover, Walter B. (1997). Di Hutrisha Shproch, An Introduction to the Language of the Hutterites of North America with a Special Emphasis upon the Language and History of the Hutterian Prairie People at Langham, Saskatchewan, Canada : A Grammar and Lexicon. Saskatoon.
  • Herfried Scheer: Die deutsche Mundart der Hutterischen Brüder in Nordamerika, Wien 1987. (A Hutterisch - Standard German - English dictionary of about 1.0000 words on 321 pages)
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Beothuk language

The Beothuk language ( or ), also called Beothukan, was spoken by the indigenous Beothuk people of Newfoundland. The Beothuk have been extinct since 1829 and there are few written accounts of their language, so little is known about it.

Ditidaht language

Ditidaht (also Nitinaht, Nitinat, Southern Nootkan) is a South Wakashan (Nootkan) language spoken on the southern part of Vancouver Island. Nitinaht is related to the other South Wakashan languages, Makah and the neighboring Nuu-chah-nulth.

Geographical distribution of German speakers

This article details the geographical distribution of speakers of the German language, regardless of the legislative status within the countries where it is spoken. In addition to the German-speaking area (Deutscher Sprachraum) in Europe, German-speaking minorities are present in many countries and on all six inhabited continents.

Mostly depending on the inclusion or exclusion of certain varieties with a disputed status as separate languages (e.g., Low German/Plautdietsch), it is estimated that approximately 90–95 million people speak German as a first language, 10-25 million as a second language, and 75–100 million as a foreign language. This would imply approximately 175-220 million German speakers worldwide.

High German languages

The High German languages or High German dialects (German: hochdeutsche Mundarten) comprise the varieties of German spoken south of the Benrath and Uerdingen isoglosses in central and southern Germany, Austria, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, and Luxembourg, as well as in neighboring portions of France (Alsace and northern Lorraine), Italy (South Tyrol), the Czech Republic (Bohemia), and Poland (Upper Silesia). They are also spoken in diaspora in Romania, Russia, the United States, Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Chile, and Namibia.

The High German languages are marked by the High German consonant shift, separating them from Low German and Low Franconian (Dutch) within the continental West Germanic dialect continuum.

Hän language

The Hän language (also known as Dawson, Han-Kutchin, Moosehide; ISO 639-3 haa) is a Northern Athabaskan language spoken by the Hän Hwëch'in (translated to people who live along the river, sometimes anglicized as Hankutchin). Hän is spoken primarily in two places, each with their own dialect: the village of Eagle, Alaska in the United States and the town of Dawson City, Yukon Territory in Canada, though there are also Hän speakers in the nearby city of Fairbanks, Alaska.Hän is in the Northern Athabaskan subgrouping of the Athabaskan-Eyak-Tlingit language family. It is most closely related to Gwich'in and Upper Tanana.


Inuinnaqtun (IPA: [inuinːɑqtun]; natively meaning like the real human beings/peoples), is an indigenous Inuit language of Canada and a dialect of Inuvialuktun. It is related very closely to Inuktitut, and some scholars, such as Richard Condon, believe that Inuinnaqtun is more appropriately classified as a dialect of Inuktitut. The governments of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut recognise Inuinnaqtun as an official language in addition to Inuktitut. The Official Languages Act of Nunavut, passed by the Senate of Canada on June 11, 2009, recognized Inuinnaqtun as one of the official languages of Nunavut.Inuinnaqtun is used primarily in the communities of Cambridge Bay and Kugluktuk in the western Kitikmeot Region of Nunavut. Outside Nunavut, it is spoken in the hamlet of Ulukhaktok, where it is also known as Kangiryuarmiutun. It is written using the Roman orthography.

Labrador Inuit Pidgin French

Labrador Inuit Pidgin French, also called Belle Isle Pidgin, was a French-lexified pidgin spoken between Breton and Basque fishermen and the Inuit of Labrador from the late 17th century until about 1760.

List of Canadian English dictionaries

List of Canadian English dictionaries:

Canadian Oxford Dictionary ISBN 0195418166

Collins Canadian Dictionary ISBN 0007337523

A Dictionary of Canadianisms on Historical Principles ISBN 0771519761

Gage Canadian Dictionary ISBN 0771519818

Houghton Mifflin Canadian Dictionary ISBN 0395296544

ITP Nelson Canadian Dictionary ISBN 0176065911

Penguin Canadian Dictionary ISBN 0773050078

Reader's Digest Webster's Canadian Dictionary and Thesaurus ISBN 1554750520

Websters Canadian Dictionary ISBN 1596951311

Winston Canadian Dictionary ISBN 0176425691

Maritime Sign Language

Maritime Sign Language (MSL), is a sign language descended from British Sign Language and used in Canada's Atlantic provinces. It was created through the convergence of deaf communities from the Northeastern United States and the United Kingdom immigrating to Canada throughout the 1700s and 1800s. It is unknown the extent to which this language is spoken today, though there are linguistic communities found across the Atlantic provinces. MSL is being supplanted by American Sign Language (ASL) resulting in fewer MSL speakers and a lack of resources (education, interpretation, etc.) for MSL speakers.

The dialect of ASL currently used in the Maritimes exhibits some lexical influence from MSL. ASL is now the main language that is used by the Deaf community in Newfoundland, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. Due to the expansion of ASL, there are fewer than 100 MSL users.

Naskapi language

Naskapi (also known as Iyuw Iyimuun in the Naskapi language) is an Algonquian language spoken by the Naskapi in Quebec and Labrador, Canada. It is written in Eastern Cree syllabics.

The term Naskapi is chiefly used to describe the language of the people living in the interior of Quebec and Labrador in or around Kawawachikamach, Quebec. Naskapi is a "y-dialect" that has many linguistic features in common with the Northern dialect of East Cree, and also shares many lexical items with the Innu language.

Although there is a much closer linguistic and cultural relationship between Naskapi and Innu than between Naskapi and other Cree language communities, Naskapi remains unique and distinct from all other language varieties in the Quebec-Labrador peninsula.

Nicola language

Nicola is an extinct Athabascan language formerly spoken in the Similkameen and Nicola Countries of British Columbia by the group known to linguists and ethnographers as the Nicola people, although that name in modern usage refers to an alliance of Interior Salishan bands living in the same area. Almost nothing is known of the language. The available material published by Franz Boas required only three pages. What the Nicola called themselves and their language is unknown. The Salishan-speaking Thompson language Indians who absorbed them (today's Nicola people, in part) refer to them as the [stuwix] "the strangers".

So little is known of the language that beyond the fact that it is Athabascan it cannot be classified. Some linguists have suggested that it is merely a displaced dialect of Chilcotin, but the evidence is too skimpy to allow a decision.

Sechelt language

The Sechelt language, Sháshíshálh or Shashishalhem (IPA: [ʃáʃíʃáɬəm]), is a Coast Salish language spoken by the Shishalh (Sechelt) people of southwestern British Columbia, Canada, centred on their reserve communities in the Sechelt Peninsula area of the Sunshine Coast.

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Although endangered, the Sechelt people, with help from others, have reclaimed 603 phrases and 5659 words in total.

Seeker (Anabaptism)

A Seeker is a person likely to join an Old Order Anabaptist community, like the Amish, the Old Order Mennonites, the Hutterites, the Old Order Schwarzenau Brethren or the Old Order River Brethren. Among the 500,000 member of such communities in the United States there are only an estimated 1,200 to 1,300 outsiders who have joined them.A major obstacle for seekers is the language, because most Old Order communities speak German dialects like Pennsylvania German or Hutterite German in every day life and in general won't give it up for seekers. Exceptions are the Old Order Mennonites of Virginia, the Old Order Schwarzenau Brethren and the Old Order River Brethren who speak English only.

Sekani language

The Sekani language is a Northern Athabaskan language spoken by the Sekani people of north-central British Columbia, Canada.

Southern Bavarian

Southern Bavarian, or Southern Austro-Bavarian, is a cluster of Upper German dialects of the Bavarian group. They are primarily spoken in Tyrol (i.e. the Austrian federal state of Tyrol and the Italian province of South Tyrol), in Carinthia and in the western parts of Upper Styria. Due to the geographic isolation of these Alpine regions, many features of the Old Bavarian language from the Middle High German period have been preserved. On the other hand, the Southern Bavarian dialect area is influenced by Slovene, Italian Greek and Ladin minority languages.

The speech area historically included the former linguistic enclaves in Carniola (present-day Slovenia) around Kočevje in the Gottschee region (Gottscheerish), Sorica (Zarz) and Nemški Rovt (Deutsch Ruth). The Cimbrian language still spoken in several language-islands in north-eastern Italy (Friuli, Veneto and Trentino) mostly counts as a separate Bavarian language variant. Southern Bavarian is also spoken in the Werdenfelser Land region around Mittenwald and Garmisch-Partenkirchen in German Upper Bavaria.

The Tyrolean Unterland, the Alpine regions of Salzburg (Pinzgau, Pongau and Lungau), as well as the adjacent parts of Styria and southern Burgenland form the dialect continuum with the Central Bavarian language area in the north.

Tahltan language

Tahltan is a poorly documented Northern Athabaskan language historically spoken by the Tahltan people (also "Nahanni") who live in northern British Columbia around Telegraph Creek, Dease Lake, and Iskut. Tahltan is a critically endangered language. Several linguists classify Tahltan as a dialect of the same language as Tagish and Kaska (Krauss and Golla 1981, Mithun 1999).

Upper German

Upper German (German: Oberdeutsch ) is a family of High German languages spoken primarily in the southern German-speaking area (Sprachraum).

Varieties of German spoken outside Europe
North America
South America
Asia and the Pacific

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