|Drempels un Tegels vun't
Neddersassische (Nedderdüütsche, Plattdüütsche)*
Building Blocks of Low Saxon (Low German)
currently working on a new, more extensive and more detailed English
version of the grammar. It will
eventually replace this one.
In the meantime you may take a peek preview at its temporary location:
|Students of Low Saxon (Low German) will find on these pages lists and tables of North Saxon grammatical forms and paradigms. This is an ongoing effort. Corrections and suggestions are welcome and should be sent to Reinhard "Ron" F. Hahn (email@example.com). Further pages are being planned, including an introduction to pronunciation.|
is Low Saxon (Low German)?
It is a language that descended primarily from Old Saxon, which is also one of the ancestors of English. Today’s Low Saxon (these days usually called “Low German” in Germany) is spoken in what used to be the old territory of the Saxons (the true Saxons, as opposed to the people of today’s German state of Saxony) that covers today’s Northern Germany and the eastern provinces of the Netherlands. It is also used by many North and Latin Americans as well as by people in the former Soviet Union with roots in that Northwest European region. This includes most Mennonites. Due to having been a suppressed or even oppressed minority language within its own territory, the language has never developed a standard variety and standard spelling. It is greatly fragmented with regard to dialects, social groups and opinions, and it is therefore endangered. However, Low Saxon literature goes back uninterruptedly to the early middle ages and is currently blossoming again, in great part due to Low Saxon having become an officially recognized language in Germany, the Netherlands and thus Europe and having thus regained a measure of respectability.
|A note about spelling:
Low Saxon (Low German) was recognized as a legitimate language only recently. Prior to that, the dialects of Northern Germany were regarded as belonging to German, and the dialects of the Eastern Netherlands were regarded as belonging to Dutch. Because of centuries of official and educational neglect and suppression, the language has been unable to develop a standard dialect and a standard orthography, even though there is a notable written Low Saxon tradition. There are several spelling conventions, based on German principles in Germany and based on Dutch principles in the Netherlands, and few writers strictly adhered to any of them. So far, spelling systems have been devised and developed mostly by activists and writers with insufficient familiarity with phonological principles, and most Low Saxon writers have been trying to write their home dialect "phonetically." This disunity, together with attempts to Germanize Low Saxon orthography, has led to a confusing situation that does anything but help this minority language survive.
Only German-based spelling of the North Saxon dialects will be used on these pages. Alternative spelling will be listed (separated by "~"). However, the following conventions will not be considered:
* The literal meaning of the Low Saxon title is "Ground Joists (or Thresholds) and Tiles of Low Saxon (Low German)."
Corrections? Suggestions? Wishes? Please send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org.
© 1997-2006, Reinhard "Ron" F. Hahn. All rights reserved.