Schleswig – a region of longitudinal language contact


  • Elin Fredsted Europa-Universität Flensburg



The topic of this article is the structural similarity of neighbouring language varieties belonging to two different branches of the Germanic languages. The German-Danish border region (Schleswig/Sønderjylland) is characterized by longitudinal language contact between West and North Germanic varieties, which have developed common features not to be found in other varieties of these languages spoken outside the contact area. These shared features are the results of regional multilingualism, language contact, and/or of language shift(s). This paper focuses on syntactical convergences. Examples of different aspects of convergences are presented, covering mainly convergences from the North Germanic regional language of South Jutish to West Germanic varieties (Low German, North Frisian, and Standard German regiolect), and from Standard German to the Standard Danish variety spoken by members of the Danish minority on the German side of the border since 1920.






Section 1: Language contact in the Danish-German border region and beyond