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Haven for Tax Evaders[edit]

I think this article should state more clearly that Switzerland's economy is built primarily on its secret bank account system, which holds billions of dollars deposited by tax evaders and criminals from all over Europe... Perhaps there should be a 'criticisms' section. When you say 'Switzerland', most people immediately think 'tax haven' - Wikipedia should reflect this. Vorpaul (talk) 02:11, 27 October 2010 (UTC)

I don't see why you believe that Swiss economy is built on it's banking system. Please give me some additional information about your sources.
According to my sources (OECD and official Swiss statistics), the entire financial sector only contributes roughly 10 percent to the nation's GDP. The banking sector only contributes a part of this sector, the country's insurance industry is also very important. If you analyze Swiss banking further, you'll find that investment banking actually is responsible for nearly fifty percent of profits.
So the whole private banking sector only contributes roughly 2 to 3 percent to the GDP. As most assets managed by Swiss banks do belong to Swiss citizen, I'd estimate the money made with foreigners hiding their money in Switzerland of less than 1 percent of the GDP.
It's also worth noting that Switzerland has one of the world's strictest anti-money laundring laws, which is why criminals usually choose Hong Kong, Singapore, Cayman Islands or the Channel Islands for hiding their assets. Also dictators like Gadaffi increasingly avoid Switzerland - which is wise, as the Swiss government was the first one that froze Gadaffi's assets...
After my studies of the world's financial markets, I must conclude that many people seem to misunderstand the Swiss market. Perhaps this is because of some old movies where Swiss bank accounts, especially number accounts, were really secret. Jiuhao (talk) 22:56, 13 May 2011 (UTC)
please see --->,, as just two recent examples of Swiss banking being used for illicit purposes. HammerFilmFan (talk) 09:45, 12 September 2011 (UTC)
In this case you better write in the article about USA that some US citizens try to hide their money abroad to avoid paying taxes. If a man kills another man, do you blame the weapon store for this? A weapon store sells weapons and its not their job to observe their customers after a legal purchase. Banks are doing banking and its not their job to be tax detectives after a legal money deposit. Switzerland has one of the world's best anti-monney laundring laws. Swiss do fight to keep the tradition of their banking secrecy as the Americans do fight to keep their right to carry a weapon. The bank secrecy was not developped with the goal to avoid taxes, its rather an expression of the relationship between the Swiss their government, the strong desire to have protection of privacy. For Swiss this is equally fundamental as the weapons law for US citizens, which was developped to give US citizens the right to protect themselves, rather than to misuse weapons. Critical is the manner in which a law is used.--User1973 (talk) 08:28, 16 May 2013 (UTC)

John Calvin?[edit]

I'm really surprised that John Calvin isn't in this article. I don't know much about Switzerland, but I do know that, for good or ill, Calvin has had an enormous impact on Christianity in the West. I think it should be noted that he lived in Switzerland when he attempted to reform the religion. (talk) 16:58, 17 January 2010 (UTC)

Perhaps but Calvin was actually French (born in Picardy, far north of Switzerland). Historian932 (talk) 18:51, 23 April 2013 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Switzerland/GA2. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Jhbuk (talk) 19:36, 24 January 2010 (UTC)

Generally good, but referencing needs to be improved

  • More references needed. "Switzerland and the European Union" only has references in the first paragraph; more are needed across the article where I've put cite needed tags (I've put them in general paragraphs needing cites, not just after specific facts)
  • Separate notes from references using <ref group=note> - it's a lot easier to use than having them all grouped together
  • A few 1-2 sentence paragraphs that disrupt the flow ought to be combined with others
  • Couple of dead links [1]
  • Add an external ref for number 22 about Lenin

  • Are all the external links really necessary?
  • Possibly too many images?
  • "Swiss armed forces" - "a high percentage of the people voted in favour of it" - can you quote the actual figure?

I'm putting the article on hold, as I think the references can be sorted out in a week.

I added some references and separated them from the notes but there are still two citations missing in the first section (Etymology). Apparently all dead links have alternate source. mgeo talk 16:25, 25 January 2010 (UTC)
Symbol support vote.svg

Pass The article is at the GA standard - there are no substantial problems that would cause the article to fail the review. However, I think I can still see some areas that have still not been fixed from the first PR over 3 years ago, although the most significant have been. Jhbuk (talk) 18:22, 26 January 2010 (UTC)


The Anthem is not in German only, as may suggest the infobox. As stated in the linked Article, the anthem has lyrics in all four national languages. As I don't wan't to register only to correct this, I hope someone else does. (talk) 09:20, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

Put it in English. I don't think it is necessary to have the translations in every languages. mgeo talk 15:34, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

WW2 Bombing[edit]

Gertzi! It seems I read where either Shauffhausen or Winterthur was bombed by the Allies after repeatedly being warned to stop producing ball bearings for the Nazis. Can someone verify this? I lived in Luzern for 2 years and picked up the language from the locals. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:24, 29 January 2010 (UTC)

It was Schaffhausen, see Schaffhausen#History and de:Schaffhausen#Bombardierung Schaffhausens im Zweiten Weltkrieg (in German). Though the official version (also by the U.S.) is that it was a mistake. Lupo 11:58, 1 March 2010 (UTC)

How important was Capodistria?[edit] says: In 1809 Kapodistrias entered the service of Alexander I of Russia.[19] His first important mission, in November 1813, was as unofficial Russian ambassador to Switzerland, with the task of helping disentangle the country from the French dominance imposed by Napoleon. He secured Swiss unity, independence and neutrality, which were formally guaranteed by the Great Powers, and actively facilitated the initiation of a new Constitution for the 19 cantons that were the component states of Switzerland, with personal drafts. In the ensuing Congress of Vienna, 1815, as the Russian minister, he counterbalanced the paramount influence of the Austrian minister, Prince Metternich, and insisted on French state unity under a Bourbon monarch. He also obtained new international guarantees for the Constitution and neutrality of Switzerland through an agreement among the Powers. After these brilliant diplomatic successes, Alexander I appointed Kapodistrias joint Foreign Minister of Russia (with Karl Robert Nesselrode). Is that true? Supposedly there are some statues to Capodistria in Switzerland too. Simanos (talk) 17:04, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

Yes, that seems to be true. C.f. [2], [3], and [4]. A bust in honor of Kapodistrias was unveiled in Lausanne-Ouchy on September 21, 2009. Lupo 13:38, 5 March 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from, 21 May 2010[edit]


Please change "133th" to "133rd" because it is wrong. (talk) 15:35, 21 May 2010 (UTC)

Done --skew-t (talk) 18:22, 21 May 2010 (UTC)


I would rather mention Appenzeller cheese and Rivelle, Ovomaltine etc instead of Swiss wine. Unless there are some awards to prove that it is especially outstanding, I would leave the wine out. Since wine is not an especially Swiss or a product switzerland is known for, it add undue weight to the article. Greetings --hroest 10:12, 8 June 2010 (UTC)

It is. See e.g. [Pinot Noir Competition] and [Merlot Competition]. Engelec (talk) 17:16, 26 September 2012 (UTC)

Swiss conquest of England[edit]

Some authors say that the real conquerors of England were swiss and not at all normans. The reality must appear. It is not neutral. Check up.--Dogfish Jim and the Dixoap (talk) 20:32, 28 September 2010 (UTC)

"Some authors" really need to regularly take their medications. Please. Spare us the fringe.HammerFilmFan (talk) 08:55, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

Why the articles[edit]

(German: die Schweiz,[note 3] French: la Suisse, Italian: la Svizzera, Romansh: la Svizra) What's the need of articles in the incipit?-- (talk) 18:53, 5 October 2010 (UTC)

I don't know what WP:MOS recommends, but in German, at least, there is a good reason for putting the definite article. "Die Schweiz" is one of few nations where German language uses an article (other examples include "der Sudan", "die Ukraine", or nations in the plural form such as "die Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika" (or "die USA"), but simply "Deutschland", "Frankreich", "Australien", "Namibia", ... for most nations. In the three Romance languages, it is standard to use a definite article before a nation, unlike in English (also with a small number of exceptions). So it makes sense to write "la Suisse" as the correct form, because you wouldn't say "Suisse" (without "la") for the nation; "Suisse" would imply the demonym. ---Sluzzelin talk 18:21, 3 November 2010 (UTC)
Despite my weak attempt at justifying it, it looks like this usage isn't consistent with other articles on countries, including the featured articles on Peru and Chad, where the Romance translations are given as headwords without article. ---Sluzzelin talk 18:38, 3 November 2010 (UTC)
in Romance languages you put the definite article pretty much before of anything, this doesn't mean you need to write "la Suisse" or whatever else, only the proper name is relevant. Probably it's well justified in German, but in the other three cases I think it's just osmosis. -- (talk) 01:07, 19 November 2010 (UTC)
Corrected. mgeo talk 01:14, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Old Swiss Confederacy[edit]

The original three cantons where Uri, Schwyz and Unterwalden - and not Nidwalden. Unterwalden later split into Nid- and Obwalden.

The article History of Switzerland shows it correctly. Also does Confoederatio Helvetica on German Wiki. (talk) 16:40, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

Corrected. mgeo talk 22:18, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

Status of Swiss Language[edit]

I miss some information on the status of the languages: I understand that all 3 languages can be spoken in the national parliament, but are there restriction on official use of the languages in the different regions? Is education in French organised in the German speaking part and vice versa? And if no is it because there is no need for it or because it is not allowed?

Can a German speaking person expect to do his official communication with the government(tax papers, building permits, other administration) in German in the French speaking part (and vice versa)?

What is the language in local politics, is it fixed or are the politicians free to choose?

I had asked the question in Talk:Languages of Switzerland, but maybe here there is more chance on getting an answer.Nicob1984 (talk) 13:26, 7 November 2010 (UTC)

no, because these are the official languages at the federal level, and can be used in official communication with the confederation, but not on the cantonal level. Each canton has its own official language, mostly a single one, but as is noted at Languages of Switzerland, "The cantons of Fribourg, Bern and Valais are officially bilingual; Graubünden is officially trilingual." In general, most questions about Switzerland can be answered with "it depends on the canton". --dab (𒁳) 14:25, 7 November 2010 (UTC)

Ok I understand. So a citizen must do all his communication with the government in the language of his canton and can only follow education in the language of his canton.

I suppose that the official language of each canton is determined by the parliament of that canton. Are there any precedents of cantons that chanced their official language(s)? (As a Belgian I am very much interested in this topic, cause we have a similar situation, and I did not find answers on my beloved encyclopedia.)Nicob1984 (talk) 15:25, 8 November 2010 (UTC)

Not quite. It depends on the governmental level. On the Federal level any federal language will do. On the cantonal level, the official language(s) of the canton must be used. Same on the municipal level. All three are separate entities. Don Durandal (talk) 15:40, 8 November 2010 (UTC)

I think Rumantsh was added as the third official language of Grisons in the 1930s. The other bilingual cantons have been so since the foundation of the federal state. --dab (𒁳) 21:20, 9 November 2010 (UTC)

About the languages in the education system: It is so that next to your mother tongue you will have to learn an other official language, determined where the canton you're living in is situated (e.g. most Swissgermans have to learn French, some Italian; most Italianspeakers learn French, most Frenchspeakers German). When I grew up, it was at least 5 years french for everyone, however most had 8 years or more (because language courses continue during apprentisages) and of course English (for two years, however today most children learn English first, some already in kindergarden.) After the compulsory school a lot of people attend a school of higher education where learning a third official language is possible (though not compulsory). Communication with the government you can do in all 4 languages, only with your canton you have to do it in the cantons official language (which is determined foremost by the speakers who live there). In general you can say, that the language districts are very homogeneous, everyone there speaks the same language, only where language borders go through cantons you would have bilingual cantons. The Canton of Grisons is an exception because it has three languages (the only one with Rumantsh.) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Poppy fields (talkcontribs) 21:03, 10 January 2014 (UTC)

Switzerland is in the unusual situation of being the home of three of Europe's major languages.[edit]

The wording for this sounds very strange. The way it's worded is as if the three languages were invented in Switzerland which I'm sure isn't the case. It seems to me like this should be reworded, right? Switzerland#Culture —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:09, 25 January 2011 (UTC)

Tweaked. Belgium also hosts 3 major languages. Materialscientist (talk) 23:18, 25 January 2011 (UTC)

POV in most Swiss articles[edit]

I comment here as the topic concerns Swiss articles, rather than inserting the same discussion in the thousands of articles it concerns. During the autumn, User:Tobyc75 has done a fantastic job expanding the articles on Swiss communes, and I am the first to thank him for his extremely valuable contribution to Wikipedia! Unfortunately, there is one problem that, in my eyes at least, lower the quality of every article on Swiss communes. Looking at demographics and education, we are constantly given the opening line "The entire Swiss population is generally well educated." I have several objections to this phrase. To start with, it is not sourced. I'm sure the Swiss are well educated, but we're concerned with sourced facts. Even if a source of some kind was added, the next question is: "well educated" compared to whom? I'm Finnish myself, used to live in Canada and Sweden. Are the Swiss better educated than Finns, Swedes or Canadians? Perhaps, perhaps not and that's not really the point either. The phrase is quite simply vague and there's a strong hint of chauvinism to it, while not adding anything to the article on the individual communes. Quite the contrary, it detracts from the quality. If properly sourced, that claim could and should be made in this article and in the article Education in Switzerland, though not in every article on Swiss communes.Jeppiz (talk) 18:13, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

I'm afraid I don't really see what the big deal is here. The statement is a lead into a section on education, and makes no comparison with any specific other country. A few reports that show Switzerland's performance against other countries (focusing on the US's poor performance) NATIONAL CENTER FOR EDUCATION STATISTICS (US), World Economic Forum, ranks Switzerland as first in Global Competitiveness, CIA world fact book, says 99% literacy. Tobyc75 (talk) 16:53, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I have to agree with Jeppiz here. The statement "The entire Swiss population is generally well educated" is out of place at the start of every "Education" section about Swiss municipalities (e.g. Mendrisio#Education), not because it is wrong, but because it is vague and unrelated to the specific municipality. Instead, the hatnote
could be used at the start of the section, and general statements about Swiss education made there.  Sandstein  21:07, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Ok, fair enough, I think I'll just drop the line from the articles going forward. It appears in about 1500 articles right now, so removing it'll be a slow process. Anyone any good with bots? Tobyc75 (talk) 22:02, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Glad we all agree about removing the sentence. A bot would be great, but in the meantime I can start working on it by removing it from at least some articles. I'll start with the larger cities and better known municipalities, those that are likely to get most readers. CheersJeppiz (talk) 11:39, 10 February 2011 (UTC)
Well I have to agree with Tobyc75 about the statement. Anyway it doesn't seem really important to me and I think we should leave the choice to the editor who is doing the hard work (hence Tobyc75) and not use a bot - unless, of course, there is a broad consensus to remove the statement. mgeo talk 15:50, 10 February 2011 (UTC)


Should we mention in the introduction that Switzerland is home to the International Labour Organization and the World Trade Organization? To my knowledge they are not particularly related to Switzerland (unlike the Red Cross) and we could list dozens of other institutions that have at least the same notability. mgeo talk 14:46, 21 April 2011 (UTC)

Seeing no response, I removed them. mgeo talk 21:37, 7 June 2011 (UTC)

Central Europe or Western Europe[edit]

Recently, I engaged in a very strange 'battle' with Madgeographer. He argues that Switzerland is Western European while vast majority of resources say it is actualy central European, as an alpine country with no Atlantic colonies in the past and under confluence of Protestant and Catholic cultures. I suggest to stick to resources, unless mad. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Rejedef (talkcontribs) 04:10, 26 April 2011 (UTC)

No matter how many references you cite to support your point of view, in the English-speaking world Switzerland is still usually associated with western Europe rather than central Europe. There is already a note saying that Switzerland is sometimes considered part of central Europe. I really don't see what's wrong with that. mgeo talk 10:56, 26 April 2011 (UTC)

Understanding your reference concern, I provided only non-Wikipedia references. During the Cold war,Even Greece, Cyprus and Finland were in Western Europe. the cold war ended more or less 20 years ago andd new European sub-division was suggested by numerous scholars. Most importantly, the United NAtionns geography experts. This sub-division is in use by major media, including BBC: Switzerland.

You must be at least 35 years old like my teacher or just Extra-European. My teacher recommended my class to visit 'Eastern Berlin' while the city is nowadays united and finding Eastern Berlin is almost impossible, unless you just go to the East. I know that because I was there.

I tell you that to say that I understand your position. Please, just remain open enough for changes which took place in Europe. --Rejedef (talk) 21:16, 26 April 2011 (UTC)

I still don't agree with your edits. Switzerland is located on about every map of Western Europe, while it often doesn't appear on maps of Central Europe. You are also saying here that the term "Western Europe" is no longer in use, but it is simply not true:
  • For a relatively small country bang in the heart of Western Europe, Switzerland has an astonishingly complicated array of languages..., Rough Guide to Switzerland, 2003
  • Situated at the crossroads of Western Europe, Switzerland has traditionally had a liberal foreign trade system., OECD Economic Surveys: Switzerland, 2003
  • Switzerland appears as one of the great anomalies of European integration. Located at the heart of Western Europe and surrounded by European Union (EU) member states on all side, it has chosen not to be a member. Switzerland's Bilateral Agreements with the European Union, 2006
Therefore it seems to me that "middle of Western Europe" could be more appropriate than just "Western Europe" or "Western or Central Europe (depending on the definition)". mgeo talk 00:37, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

What I am saying is that the term Western Europe lost its cold war significance. Nowadays Alpine countries but Italy and related with HRE are Central European.

The fact that it doesn't appear in the maps of Central Europe is easy to challenge: how old are maps you are relating to? Do these maps relate to the new or old sub-division of Europe?

Relating to the fact that it is a country with an array of languages, it will support the fact that it is a Central European country, as Uniited Nations geographers suggest:

Rough guide of Switzerland for me is no reference because the publisher is not mentioned or well-established enough. Also, it is not a scholarly nor geographical book, but a guide which is about travel and leisure.

I didn't find your resource of OECD. What I found is a report stating several times Switzerland's Central Position in Europe:

Please note both resources were published before 2006 when the UN paper was published:

Now I expect you to stop editing this section of the article. --Rejedef (talk) 17:40, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

There is no "UN paper" stating that Switzerland is in Central Europe. For the United Nations Statistics Division, Switzerland is included in Western Europe (although it is principally for statistical purposes). This article is about Switzerland, not Geography of Switzerland. Why is it so important to you to have the term "Central Europe" explicitly mentioned in the introduction? mgeo talk 20:22, 1 May 2011 (UTC)

Both is right. Switzerland is in Central Europe but historically it was not part of the communistic countries, it was west of the iron curtain, so it's part of Western Europe.--User1973 (talk) 08:34, 16 May 2013 (UTC)


I suggest to keep the version "Western or Central Europe". I believe the previous version gives virtually no transparency to the fact that Switzerland is commonly considered as a Central European country, especially in Britain and Germany. This also mentions Western in the FIRST PLACE. As Western Europe is still in use and relatively common, especially before 2006 and during the Cold War when countries like Turkey, Finland, Greece, Malta and Cyprus were 'Western European' just because they weren't in the Warsaw Pact. --Rejedef (talk) 23:18, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

This "controversy" is seriously getting out of hand. For me, being Swiss and all, it's a clear case that most Swiss people regard themselves Central Europeans (together with Germans and Austrians and a few others). Apparently, this does not cut it in a lot of English sources. So well. Let's have an edit war for a few weeks. And a fine one at that, one to take serious WP pride in. For Jimminy's sake, let's acknowledge both notions if we must, and move the s**t on. Can we have a "yay"? ("Which one is 'yes'?" - "Yay.") Trigaranus (talk) 06:53, 6 May 2011 (UTC)
The proposed consensus is good. The added comment by Trigaranus about "most Swiss people" is to be understood as "Swiss German speaking people" (a majority indeed). French and Italian speakers tend to feel otherwise. Clpda (talk) 13:29, 25 August 2011 (UTC)

Edit request[edit]

The following part of Reference 2 looks spurious:

Also known for their amazing chocolate around the world. Switzerland creates a wonderful variety of desserts filled with rich cocoa.

Lalsam (talk) 10:05, 24 June 2011 (UTC)


From the description of a picture "Some of the Swiss scientists who played a key role in their discipline (clockwise): Leonhard Euler (mathematics) Louis Agassiz (glaciology) Auguste Piccard (aeronautics) Albert Einstein (physics)"

Einstein is a german. Are there not enough real swissborn people to present? I know he studied in swiss but still... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:32, 2 October 2011 (UTC)

This section is not about Swiss-born people, it is about science in Switzerland. Einstein was Swiss and he was a Nobel Prize winner, see any major biography. mgeo talk 10:52, 3 October 2011 (UTC)
Einstein was german born and he was german citizen and lived in germany when he recieved the nobel prize, i dont understand why the article suggests einstein was swiss. are there not 4 real swiss people who are worth to mention in this section? Would be better than indicating einstein was a swiss born. And yes i know he was a swiss citizen, but he also was an american... . At least it should be mentioned that einstein was a german and simply lived in switzerland for a while not more... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:54, 7 October 2011 (UTC)

- "Many Nobel prizes were awarded to Swiss scientists, for example to the world-famous physicist Albert Einstein" this is simply wrong. Pls check sources regarding nobelprice, einstein is mentioned as german, simply because he was one. when he got the nobel prize, he was german born, he was german citizen and he lived in germany. Please change this statement. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:57, 7 October 2011 (UTC)

Einstein was a german. He officially rejected german citizenship while he was 17 and lived in Switzerland, where he was studying. And sure he was not german when he won the Nobel. It's interesting to note that Nobel winners Von Lenard and Stark (they were actually german) categorized Einstein's works as "Jew Physics" under the 3rd Reich. --Pascalbrax (talk) 08:55, 19 October 2011 (UTC)
Einstein was born in Germany and was a German citizen from 1879–1896 and from 1914–1933. The Nobel Price he received in 1921, so of course he was a German citizen at the time. Apart from that, he was and always will remain "German-born"; therefore mostly being German.--IIIraute (talk) 10:46, 9 March 2012 (UTC)

This is anyway completely irrelevant in this article. There are other people born outside Switzerland mentioned in this article and we don't give their origins. mgeo talk 11:29, 9 March 2012 (UTC)
The science part is full of bias and misleading in the way it is written. It also did claim that Einstein did write his "General Theory of Relativity (1916)" in Bern, while it was the "Special Relativity (1905)" he did write in Bern. In his early days in Berlin, Einstein postulated that the correct interpretation of the special theory of relativity must also furnish a theory of gravitation and in 1916 he published his paper on the general theory of relativity. In 1921 he received the Nobel Prize while being a German citizen, researching and living in Germany. (see: (talk) 11:40, 9 March 2012 (UTC)
Yes you're right about the "special theory" he developed in Bern (and not the general theory). Thanks for the correction. mgeo talk 11:41, 9 March 2012 (UTC)
  • What a cheap shot, to accuse me of edit warring, while I had sent you a WP:3RR and opened WP:RfC, 15 minutes before you did write the message above [5].--IIIraute (talk) 13:55, 9 March 2012 (UTC)

Einstein may be born German, but he definitely had the Swiss citizenship in 1921. If he had the German Citizenship at this time, although he was at this time working there, is generally questioned.

Minor edit request[edit]

A point about English idiom. "Its policy of neutrality has been internationally recognised at the Congress of Vienna in 1815" You can say "Switzerland has been neutral since 1815" but for a once-only act you need to use "was" not "has been". So you could say "Its policy of neutrality was internationally recognised at the Congress of Vienna in 1815."Alphick (talk) 22:10, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

I corrected it. Thanks for spotting the mistake. mgeo talk 20:06, 20 December 2011 (UTC)

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MadGeographer's constant edit-warring and violation of WP standards and policy[edit]

For some weird reason editor MadGeographer does not like Switzerland being said to be situated in both "central" and "western Europe", even though the very article he had me check SAYS THAT VERY THING about Switzerland. It says in the "Geography of Switzerland" article these very words: "Switzerland can be either part of Western or Central Europe, both concepts being context-dependent and carrying cultural, economical and political connotations." There's no real indication that "western Europe" for Switzerland is necessarily more accurate. But this is the thing. I did a fair compromise that his MG editor (who does not understand that he does not own any article, yet he is acting as if he does, because he has some affinity for Switzerland apparently (check his page), and therefore has certain biases or preferences of how something should or should not be) did not see as an "improvement" in rude arrogance. I put it as "situated in central and western Europe" to make it clear that it's considered both. Why? BECAUSE SWITZERLAND IS CONSIDERED AS IN BOTH. So what's the problem? Just because he "does not like" is not a valid WP reason to blatantly undo an edit that is 1) accurate 2) sourced 3) supported by other WP articles and 4) good-faith. NO BUSINESS UNDOING THAT, simply because of his own personal tastes or whims or jerkiness. I won't put up with it.

Again, he acts as if he owns the article, and does not understand that he does not, and he is supposed respect other edits as long as they're technically accurate and good-faith. That's WP recommendation and NOT revert. Reverting things you don't like even if they're valid and sourced etc, anything other than real inaccuracies or vandalism etc, is against WP drift and policy, if one bothers to study the policy on these things. The point is it's a fact that Switzerland is ALSO considered as in "Central Europe" TOO. So I put it as both central and western. MadGeographer for some reason has a problem with it, but that's HIS problem, that he should not be nuisancing Wikipedia with, as it his personal issue. Not a valid WP argument or situation. And his constant reverting is edit-warring, and not to be tolerated. Regards. Hashem sfarim (talk) 23:37, 25 February 2012 (UTC)

Western Europe and Central Europe (note the capital letters) are regions of Europe, western Europe only means the western part of Europe, which is more correct in this case than central Europe (e.g. Switzerland is much closer to the Atlantic ocean than the Ural mountains).
I think the introduction should be clear and without unnecessary details, hence my revert. You can always propose a better introduction/definition on this talk page, so other editors can comment on it and choose the better one (per Wikipedia:BOLD, revert, discuss cycle). mgeo talk 00:04, 26 February 2012 (UTC)
Both are applicable the other article says, so there's nothing wrong (but just more clear) to state both. There's no valid WP reason to rudely revert just because an editor does not personally "like" it.
But even if that's the case, MG is in violation as he broke 3RR BIG TIME here. And he never went to Talk like I asked him to more than once. He never discussed it out in this discussion page. MG is in clear violation on a number of levels. Breaking 3RR, and refusing to discuss, and undoing valid accurate edits or modifications or elaboration, simply because he personally does not like it. But again, the other article says there's no real one better than the other. And that BOTH are applicable. So there's nothing wrong in stating both. It's accurate to do so, and even more clear. So you're wrong in saying that it should be ONLY one or the other. Because it's a fact that it's both. But regardless, MadGeographer is in clear violation, and now he's reported. Regards. Hashem sfarim (talk) 00:35, 26 February 2012 (UTC)


The science part is full of bias and misleading in the way it is written. It also did claim (before my edit) that Einstein did write his "General Theory of Relativity (1916)" in Bern, while it was the "Special Relativity (1905)" he did write in Bern. In his early days in Berlin, Einstein postulated that the correct interpretation of the special theory of relativity must also furnish a theory of gravitation and in 1916 he published his paper on the general theory of relativity. In 1921 he received the Nobel Prize for his 1916 publication, while being a German citizen, researching, teaching and living in Germany. (see: - The former source cited (before the changes) is full of mistakes and POV, gives wrong dates, etc. --IIIraute (talk) 11:48, 9 March 2012 (UTC)

The source: Einstein tops list of leading Swiss -, should be removed, as it is full of wrong & bias information. (Wrong theory, wrong date for Nobel Prize, wrong curriculum vitae & citizenship, etc.)--IIIraute (talk) 11:53, 9 March 2012 (UTC)
see response(s) in section "Question" above. mgeo talk 12:24, 9 March 2012 (UTC)

Sound file for National Anthem[edit]

See also: Template talk:Infobox country#Can we add a small button to play the anthem? mgeo talk 07:36, 23 April 2012 (UTC)

It would make a better arctitcle which i think it should be put up for the people, not the editors preference. lets take a vote. vote yes for the sound box to be up vote no for it to be on a different link and i vote yes philpm930Philpm930 (talk) 18:10, 22 April 2012 (UTC)

forgot to add the sound, this is a good version

philpm930Philpm930 (talk) 18:12, 22 April 2012 (UTC)

I don't think it is necessary to have this huge button in the infobox and anyone can click on the link to access the anthem page when interested. The infobox is already big, so I think we'd better avoid including things that are not strictly necessary. mgeo talk 07:31, 23 April 2012 (UTC)
actually it is neccisary since all of the nations and most in Europe have one. it would be great to have one! I personally listen to the anthem when i read the article. It shouldn't be our opinions. It seem the readers interest that the button should be on the page for ease of access. It doesn't make sense to have the link only! Sometimes......,we just have to take a risk to make wiki better, and i'd love to make wiki beter by putting up this box!!!!! Thank you!! Philpm930 (talk) 19:00, 23 April 2012 (UTC)

Edit war: colour of the Swiss flag and coat of arms[edit]

Lurid red: official logo of the (Federal Authorities of the) Swiss Confederation

Hello! Please note that the lurid red is the official red of the Swiss flag, coat of arms and the official logo of the Federal Authorities of the Swiss Confederation. On my discussion page you can read something about the right color. I can not understand why my changes have been always reset. You can see the logo on the website of the Federal Authorities of the Swiss Confederation (and for example in the “CD-Manual”; “CD” means “Corporate Design”). — PsY.cHo, 13:24, 18 May 2012 (UTC) this - is what I call a really weird discussion. Obviously Switzerland must be a very, very happy place, indeed.[6]
Although I have seen flags of both colours on buildings in Switzerland - this → [7] seems to support your version.--IIIraute (talk) 13:47, 18 May 2012 (UTC)

Besides the color, the dimensions of the flag seem to be off. The proper proportions are a 5x5 square, with a 3x3 cross. i.e. one can construct the entire flag from 5 white squares and 20 red squares, all of which have the same size. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:56, 9 February 2013 (UTC)

No, they are correct, see Flag of Switzerland. mgeo talk 09:16, 12 February 2013 (UTC)

World War II bank claims need citation[edit]

The following sentence from the Modern History section; "Even in the 21st century, some Swiss banks and entities still refused to surrender the assets obtained from victims of Nazi persecution." is a claim of fact on a controversial subject that requires a citation from a reputable source. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Ad Orientem (talkcontribs) 22:32, 1 August 2012 (UTC)

I removed it. To me the history section seems to contain to many unnecessary details like this one. We really need to shorten this section. The sentence in question could be included in Switzerland during the World Wars if cited. mgeo talk 21:55, 3 August 2012 (UTC)

Grave mistakes and errors in your text [from an origin citicen from Switzerland][edit]

Foundation of the nation There is an error about the Table under 'independence' and there foundation date: As only few of the really old states and state-simmilar constitutions the swiss history is based on a origin document and underbuilt by other documents about the creation of the coenfederatio helvetica. The modern state is still in the same spirit and the origin federal charter of 1291 after christi is worth to be studied: please refer to the official translation from this text written in a early Allemannish but still understandable from original habitants from swiss german part of switzerland:

There is also the mentionned sources of scientific documents about this early aera: The Origin of the Swiss Confederation Section 1, Document Volume 1, Aarau, 1933

Languages You made a really big mistake. It's completely wrong that in switzerland Latin would be a official language! Latin was longtime oficcialised as part of study program in the collegues by side of french and english respectively german and english for french spoken regions respectively (french OR german) AND english for italian spoken regions. Today - after a program review in the eigthies- it is still obligatory prorgram in the branch of studies : medical, culture, language, literature, philosophy.. and NO MORE for technical and oeconomics. the high scool no more held this language in theyr education program. NEVER Bold textswiss origins had spoken this language. Latin is definitively a dead language like old greek. So- in order to refer to official language you have to hold you tight on declaration of that state you're writing about. it is not as serios enougth. Please correct them. Aprovals, Sources:

  • in our constitution in article 4, ones can read (in the english version as cited behind):

The National Languages are German, French, Italian, and Romansh. English is not an official language of the Swiss Confederation. This translation is provided for information purposes only and has no legal force.

  • the swiss money (paper money) is correctly held in all four official languages, as is the federal constitiution and some cultural things.   and also

There are many other unconvenients, but lets finish here. I am sad to see that there are authors they write about things they don't know. Really not the concept of wikipedia - is n't? I am shure you can find a very big lot of people able to perfectly write in english the are really knowing switzerland. -- (talk) 09:08, 19 August 2012 (UTC)

I can't understand most of this, but nowhere does our article say that latin is an official language of Switzerland.  Sandstein  11:05, 19 August 2012 (UTC)
It actually did! Someone added it recently, probably in good faith, seeing the Latin name for the Confederation. I just removed it as unsourced. mgeo talk 12:11, 19 August 2012 (UTC)
so why do you have the notice in your table that 0.5% of Swiss citiciens are native latin speakers? What kind of mess...

--Cosy-ch (talk) 11:54, 19 August 2012 (UTC)

Oh what kind of surprise: your right nhow: in the changings about the main article I found this:

(cur | prev) 11:54, 19 August 2012‎ MadGeographer (talk | contribs)‎ . . (138,019 bytes) (-31)‎ . . (undoing recent addition of Latin as national language (unsourced)) (undo) @MadGeographer: thank you for the changing! and @Sandstein: keep whatever you want. For me and for Swiss oficials, what you are doing by 'englishing' official names from our cantons: it is no gentil way of behaviour. Therfore, I will also underline, that cantons are not only governal district- the concept is completely different. Your arguments for names I cannot agree. For correct spelling, please refer to You are not as mutch as logical correct, because international papers are refering BASEL as BASLE ?? Did you? Why GENEVA ZURICH and LUCERNE (ghrrr) but NOT BASLE ????????...and so on.. you can find others... --Cosy-ch (talk) 12:13, 19 August 2012 (UTC)

What you don't understand here is that we have the article titles Geneva, Zurich and Lucerne, hence we use here "Geneva", "Zurich" and "Lucerne" in order not to confuse the readers. If you think one of those cities/cantons has a title that fails the Wikipedia common name creterion you should feel free to start a discussion at the specific talk page (for example Talk:Geneva, Talk:Basel) and if a consensus is reached there, the article title may be modified. mgeo talk 12:55, 19 August 2012 (UTC)
ok, just let me do a final comment about that issue: In the period of coming semantic web I cannot understand that authors are trying to rename origin names and labels of things like town and important persons names and so on. I can only imagine that they don't aware about weight and influence to semantic adherence . You never will find authentic articles about politic, financial reports, job offers and other staff by searching eg. "Lucerne" without semantic aid from Google Lucern is a entity of {Luzern, Lucerne, Lucerna}. I am fully agree with kind of solutions to ADD english nomination byside of orginate.

If you send a physical letter here in switzerland with a name as Lucerne you risk to get it automaticly back to you. since automatic tray centers are doing the job, there is a obligation to follow exactly official addressing scheme. "unreadable" addresses are automaticly rejected. --Cosy-ch (talk) 14:01, 19 August 2012 (UTC)

No, there's an obligation to use the English language here on English wikipedia. Local names are given on the specific pages. CMD (talk) 04:34, 20 August 2012 (UTC)

Administrative divisions: Errors[edit]

This part is full of errors. reasons: 1) You HAVE to follow official namings 2) as english is no official language, there is no place to write administrative regions and theyr capitals in english! 3) There are some adm. divisions they have anchored in theyr constitution two official languages. Therfore they are named allways in both variants. I propose this here.

Mistakes belonging 1) and 2) obviously wrong:

* Geneva correct to Genève (same for town)
* Lucerne correct to Luzern (same for town)
* Zurich correct to Zürich (same for town)

Two official denominations: belonging 3):

* Fribourg : add Freiburg for official german (same for town): nearly half / half French/German native residents
* Bern:  add Berne  for official french(same for town)
* Valais: add Wallis for official german (town is Sitten for German): a little bit mor german residents then french

It is really important to differ between commercial and publicistic publications and this one . I guess you want to be honest and serious and not arbitrary amateurs. Personnaly I am origin swiss german, living in french part of Valais (here around speaking, living and loving in French) and not so fit in english.. But- thinking/dreaming twice is enought (in french AND swiss german) --Cosy-ch (talk) 09:40, 19 August 2012 (UTC)

Hi. That is a style issue. Wikipedia articles are normally named according to what is the most common name in English for any particular place; hence Geneva and Zurich instead of Genève and Zürich. See WP:COMMONNAME.  Sandstein  11:07, 19 August 2012 (UTC)
Just in case you did not notice, at Cantons of Switzerland#Names in national languages (which can be accessed by clicking the link on the top of the section) you will find a list including the regional language name for each canton. mgeo talk 11:48, 19 August 2012 (UTC)


The sentence is wrong: Electricity generated in Switzerland is 56% from hydroelectricity and 39% from nuclear power, with 5% of the electricity generated from conventional power sources resulting in a nearly CO2-free electricity-generating network.

I am shure that you missinterpreted the last 5%. If you (as US or UK - based writers) understand by "convential power sources" the production by heatprocess by firing coal or gas- you are completley wrong. We have no production of electrical energy by gas or by coal nether by oil. There have been one site for oil - buth this is our of service since nhow 27 years. The wording would be correct, if you replace "conventional" by "unconventional": There is acutally arround fife percent of production based on

* waste incineration processes (heat recuperation and vapour driven turbines)
* wood burning processes (industrial sized installation with production of vapor that drives turbines)
* photovoltaics
* gas from deposits(combined heat and gas to electricity machines)
* gas (same as above) but from water clearing installations and from farmer installations

--Cosy-ch (talk) 11:50, 19 August 2012 (UTC)

Administrative divisions[edit]

I wonder why on the list of cantons are listed only half of them?

Cautious (talk) 11:57, 8 October 2012 (UTC)

Have another look. The table's first two column's display one half; columns 3 + 4 represent the (alphabetically) second half. ---Sluzzelin talk 03:48, 22 October 2012 (UTC)

Swiss Army Knife[edit]

(read subject) HELLO?! WHO WOULDN'T PUT ANYTHING IN ABOUT THE Swiss Army knife?! Not to be impolite, but I think someone should put in stuff about that. I, however, cannot. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:55, 17 December 2012 (UTC)

Probably too trivial to deserve a mention... mgeo talk 09:33, 12 February 2013 (UTC)

Ease of doing business index[edit]

There has been some controversy about adding the phrase "worse than most Western World nations" in this sentence

Switzerland is an easy place to do business; Switzerland currently ranks 28th of 178 countries in the Ease of Doing Business Index, worse than most Western World nation.

I believe according to WP:NPOV we should report the facts and not interpret them. Also it is factually incorrect to say "worse than most Western World" (apart from the difficulty of defining the western world) since many countries like France, Belgium, Austria, Spain, Luxemburg, Italy etc that I consider to be part of the western world are ranked below Switzerland. Maybe if one would like to add a comparison, one could compute the rank of Switzerland within the OECD or the new and old EU countries (even though Switzerland is not part of the EU, its geography suggest a comparison / ranking with other EU countries).

One could also question whether this index should even appear in the main article and why we use this index and not the Indices of economic freedom or Global Competitiveness Report. Interestingly, Switzerland ranks much better in those two later indices. Greetings --hroest 12:15, 19 December 2012 (UTC)

"Official" languages don't add up?[edit]

The main page lists Switzerland's official languages (German, French, Italian, Romansh) by percentage but when you add them up it only reaches around 90%...I could understand if they were listing languages actually used in Switzerland (in other words non-official languages used by immigrants and businesspeople such as English) but it's "official" languages...doesn't make sense to me? (Perhaps 10% of the population does not speak any of the four?) Historian932 (talk) 18:59, 23 April 2013 (UTC)

Not sure if this is the reason, but that might be the percentage of the population that has each language as a mother tongue. Given that CH has a large foreign population, I find it OK that it does not add up to 100%. If it was the percentage of population that spoke each language, it would add to way more than 100%, since a lot of people speak at least two languages. Uirauna (talk) 19:11, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
yes, see also Languages_of_Switzerland#Immigrant_languages --dab (𒁳) 18:38, 16 August 2013 (UTC)


Why you didn't write anything about Kapodistrias? Without him Switzerland would never exist.

I assume you're talking about Ioannis Kapodistrias, who could be mentioned for his involvement in the Congress of Vienna.Tobyc75 (talk) 19:18, 16 May 2013 (UTC)

GA Reassessment[edit]

This discussion is transcluded from Talk:Switzerland/GA3. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the reassessment.

The economy section contains several statistics without citations, thus failing criterion 2b. I've added citation needed tags to indicate which parts that needs to be addressed. I will wait a week before closing this reassessment so editors can have the opportunity to fix these issues.--FutureTrillionaire (talk) 15:52, 11 July 2013 (UTC)

Hi FutureTrillionaire, could you be somewhat more specific which statistics is lacking citations? I can currently only see the median household income (which could be obtained from and the GDP per worked hour which are currently unsourced. I would thus opt to either find citations for these statements or remove them but not re-assess the GA status of the article because of minor issues. Cheers --hroest 12:39, 12 July 2013 (UTC)

If an article fails the GA criteria (in this case 2b), GAR is appropriate. Since I'm not an expert on this topic, I can't fix these problems myself. Also, there are citation needed tags in the transportation section.--FutureTrillionaire (talk) 12:59, 12 July 2013 (UTC)

Result: Kept. There was only one citation needed tag left, and I managed to find a source for that.--FutureTrillionaire (talk) 01:33, 21 July 2013 (UTC)

Copyright violation?[edit]

I came upon this book; clicking the "Search inside this book" link shows us a preview, and surprisingly its contents are pretty much a copy of this article, presenting it as an original work of the author, Tomas Clancy. I am not sure how to proceed, so I'm hoping someone with better understanding of copyright stuff will handle this situation. Poromiami (talk) 05:08, 23 July 2013 (UTC)

It looks like this book was self-published and Amazon gives a publication date of Feb 11, 2012. Looking at a Wikipedia version from Feb 8, 2012, a few days before, the text is almost exactly the same as the book. The book looks like it was lifted from the Switzerland article. Looking at the table of contents, it looks like this book was lifted from numerous Wikipedia articles. I'm not sure if packaging the articles together and selling them violates the free licenses that the Wikipedia articles were released under. Someone with more knowledge than me would have to comment on that.Tobyc75 (talk) 20:23, 23 July 2013 (UTC)

Import and export in the introduction[edit]

In the introduction, the sentence "It is the twentieth largest exporter and eighteenth largest importer of goods" needs to be updated. See List of countries by imports and List of countries by exports. Thanks! Coreyemotela (talk) 10:35, 23 August 2013 (UTC).

I updated that, thanks! Door Dow Win 345 (talk) 18:54, 2 October 2013 (UTC).

Edit request on 29 August 2013[edit]

Please remove all references to "half-canton" in this article as this term is superseded since the new Constitution entered into force on 1 January 2000. There are now simply called 26 cantons. See art. 1 of the Constitution

Among others, the section on the Council of States should be corrected. Art. 150 of the Constitution deals with this particular topic (talk) 12:52, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

Partly done: There are three references to half-canton in the article:

  1. "... 46 representatives (two from each canton and one from each half-canton) ..."
  2. "*These half-cantons are represented by one councillor (instead of two) in the Council of States."
  3. "... vote in the six traditional half-cantons each counts as half the vote ..."
only the second can be changed to canton without affecting the meaning. I've linked the first to a good explanation. (I considered scare quotes as well, but they are discouraged by the style guide.) The third refers to "traditional half-cantons" which seems fine even after an official name change. If you want different changes, please supply the text. Thanks, Celestra (talk) 18:04, 7 September 2013 (UTC)


Anyone have any idea why NPOV was added? The editor who did so gave no reason. Uberstadt (talk) 17:18, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

No, but I just came to the talk page here to see what NPOV discussions were taking place. This entry has sections that read like they were written by the Tourism Association. Very positive bias infused in many sections of the article. (talk) 18:33, 17 February 2014 (UTC)


The term Non-Denominationalhas been used as translation of the Gemran word Konfessionslos. I doubt though that these two words mean (exactly) the same. Konfessionslos does include atheists, agnostic etc but Non-Denominational as per the wikipage does not. I replaced Non-Denominational by unchurched allthough a literal translation - without confession - is maybe better.

Grsd (talk) 14:57, 18 April 2014 (UTC)

"Unchurched" tends to be used in a derogatory sense, however. More appropriate IMO might be something like "Unaffiliated." Uberstadt (talk) 18:43, 18 April 2014 (UTC)
Wasn't aware of a derogatory conotation. Thanks for the improvementGrsd (talk) 14:30, 19 April 2014 (UTC)


Percent numbers are INCORRECT! 73,1 + 23,1 + 6,1 + 0,7 = 103

--Pimlico27 (talk) 18:27, 25 April 2014 (UTC)

I'll look into it, but my guess is that they are rounded to one decimal place, as such figures often are. That's why many similar tables on Wikipedia have a disclaimer that the numbers do not add up to 100%. Uberstadt (talk) 19:13, 26 April 2014 (UTC)

Switzerland is rather in Central Europe[edit]

Culture of Switzerland is too backward to be considered culturally Western European. It introduced universal vote for women very late, in mid-20th century, and it also opposed to a large extent LGBT equality. See the report here: (talk) 13:14, 11 June 2014 (UTC)

Automobile Racing[edit]

This article states that racing is now legal in Switzerland, but it you read the Wikipedia article about the 1955 Le Mans Disaster, it states that it's still outlawed. (

Please refer to this:

Also looks like it was in fact still outlawed as of 2009:

Here's another source (not exactly the best):

Multiple sources here, but judging by the second one, racing is still outlawed. I'm guessing that the article about The Le Mans Disaster is correct and this one should be edited. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Melvinlusk (talkcontribs) 21:13, 12 June 2014 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done — added verbiage, along with a reference (to the same site btw), indicating that the legislation was only passed by one house of the Federal Assembly of Switzerland and that the other house rejected the change. Mojoworker (talk) 17:21, 13 June 2014 (UTC)

Separation from the HRE[edit]

The time-lapse map of Europe here shows the separation of Switzerland from the Holy Roman Empire occurring in 1609, well after the union of the Swiss Confederation within the HRE but decades earlier than the Peace of Westphalia in 1648, described in the article as the point where European countries began to recognize Switzerland as an independent entity. Is the time-lapse map correct? Does it reflect some key event that's missing from the history section of the article and that should be added? —Largo Plazo (talk) 13:37, 7 September 2014 (UTC)

The separation de jure of Switzerland from the HRE occurred with the Peace of Westphalia, in 1648. The map is wrong. Alex2006 (talk) 14:25, 7 September 2014 (UTC)
All right, it just came to my attention that it also shows the recession of Germany from Eastern Europe occurring into the 1950s. The synchronization between the years and the border shifts is way off altogether. —Largo Plazo (talk) 14:33, 7 September 2014 (UTC)
Forget internet, look on the books... :-) Alex2006 (talk) 14:40, 7 September 2014 (UTC)

Removal of "Future Enlargement" Section[edit]

Hallo, I removed the section about possible future enlargements of Switzerland per WP:UNDUE. I don't think that this story deserves its own section in a general article about Switzerland. The whole story belongs more to a "trivia" section and the motion of Baettig - a politician notorious for his provocations - has never been discussed, since he was not reelected,and its party (SVP) did not present it again. Of, course, if you don't agree with the removal, feel free to revert it and discuss here. Alex2006 (talk) 05:39, 17 October 2014 (UTC)

European Union[edit]

When will Switzerland is going to join the European Union — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:05, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

Possibly after the U.S. :-) Alex2006 (talk) 15:41, 7 December 2014 (UTC)